Friends of the Hastain Trail v. Coldwater

Plaintiffs did not allege facts sufficient to show that defendant landowners impliedly dedicated a fire road over their land to public use, since fire roads are only temporary easements and do not alert the landowner to any risk that they could be surrendering property rights, and there was insufficient evidence that the road was constantly used by hikers.  Neither maps showing a fire road over defendants’ property nor the decades-long use of those fire roads for 4,000 hikers per year were sufficient evidence to support a finding that the owners of the property over which the fire road ran had impliedly dedicated the road to public use.  Fire roads are only temporary easements and do not alert the landowner to the risk that the road will be deemed dedicated to public use.  There was insufficient evidence of constant use of the fire road by hikers.

California Court of Appeal, Second District, Division 1 (Rothschild, P.J.; Chaney, J., concurring; Johnson, J., dissenting): July 27, 2016; 2016 WL 4014067

 

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