Desert trespass….

On one side of the blown fence, it’s county park property, on the other side, it’s state trust land…land set aside for the state to use for its various institutions.

On one side, you drive through a gate with an attendant and pay $7 to access the park property for a day, and on the other you pay $15 to access it for a year, unless you’re a hunter, and then you only have to pay for the hunter’s license.

I parked outside of the gate on the trust side, stepped over the mangled fence, and went wandering through land that had single and double-track trails leading all over the desert, went past old watering ponds and tanks that had been marked with graffiti, stepped over spent shotgun and other shells, shattered clay pigeons, and beyond the other marks of man searching for more ancient trails of creatures that care nothing for trespassing signs and fences.

There were small and larger dry waterways with footprints of birds, mice, rabbits, lizards, and coyotes; tracks worn into the desert floor that were likely created by cattle heading toward the watering ponds from those past eras when the land was (more?) open and access was simply granted by desire; and tracks of time’s passing in the already parched desert grasses and wildflowers, the new buds on trees still waking in middle Spring, and various sizes of cacti in their growing, thriving, and dying.

Should I be concerned that I will be arrested for stealing the intellectual property contained in the images I made while trespassing on State land…..?

16 responses

  1. Love that dead tree . . . is it a tree or some other type of vegetation? I don’t know of tree trunks that are hollow and woven such but then there’s a lot I don’t know.

    As for intellectual property . . . state land is public land, as far as I can tell. Even national parks are public lands. Also, you can only steal intellectual property if it’s something that is man-made or β€” in the case of iconic images of iconic natural features β€” if you then use the images to represent yourself or your company as having an association with said locale and if you profit from it for doing so. Say you use a photo to advertise guided tours and you don’t pull a permit for such tours or get permission from the park for such tours. By law, no commercial enterprise is allowed in the parks without permission.

    Technically, and there are various degrees, you should obtain a permit if doing a photographic shoot for commercial purposes . . . and that’s where it gets into the gray area.

    Some people have websites where they sell their photography or use their photos to attract people to their sites and then sell them other stuff. Heck, unless you pay for no ads, WordPress runs ads in posts with your photos in them so if one wants to be strict, those photos are used in a commercial enterprise.

    However, the parks are usually more concerned with people defacing places or damaging things in the process of photographing them and this is more of an issue for larger production companies. Or, they’re concerned with photographers going to places where the public is not generally allowed without a permit or doing things that are forbidden. Meaning, as an individual, the park is only coming after you if your behavior had a negative impact on the flora and fauna and features of the park (the photos or videos are the only evidence they need).

    I’m no lawyer but that’s my understanding of the law as it currently stands. Meaning, I’m just blowing hot air out of one of my orifices and the value of it is indistinguishable regardless of which orifice it comes out of.

    Also, as is the case with fast-evolving technology, the law is somewhat behind in clarifying what people can and cannot do with new-fangled things and new Interner-born opportunities.

    We live in interesting times.

    April 28, 2019 at 10:55 am

    • Well…thank you for that “hot air,” Emilio…whatever the origin…and I’m not making any money off of these photos, so I would imagine that I’m really in the clear anyway.

      As for the image of the “dead tree,” it’s the remaining skeleton from a cholla cactus…something that’s quite common in this bit of desert around here. And I agree, it’s kinda cool.

      April 28, 2019 at 11:54 am

      • You know, I should have known that since now that you mentioned it, I remembered you showing and identifying it before.

        . . . it sucks getting old . . . or maybe I’m just swamped with too many things competing for attention.

        . . . or both . . .

        April 28, 2019 at 12:09 pm

        • Yep…freaking’ memory issues….

          June 8, 2019 at 9:18 am

  2. Love the place, Love your images. Wish I were there …WITH MY CAMERA (s!) M πŸ™‚

    April 28, 2019 at 3:24 pm

    • I’m sure it will still be here whenever you get here!

      June 8, 2019 at 9:19 am

  3. I love the photos, but the last one has a particular appeal.

    April 28, 2019 at 7:29 pm

    • Thank you, Terry…the last one seemed to need the black and white touch.

      June 8, 2019 at 9:20 am

  4. It seems you’re developing a slight affinity for this environment… judging by the beauty you’re finding on your explorations. Beautiful shots of the Engleman’s Cactus and that Cholla skeleton is pure, raw beauty in a desert-ish way. πŸ˜€

    April 28, 2019 at 8:48 pm

    • Just a little bit, Gunta…and I only whisper that to a handful of people!

      I do rather enjoy those Engleman’s and chollas, too. πŸ™‚

      June 8, 2019 at 9:21 am

  5. Fascinating images and place. So many marvelous textures! I can hear and feel the crackling dryness.

    April 29, 2019 at 8:35 am

    • Thank you, Lemony…it’s very difficult to walk quietly out there…it seems that everything makes noise!

      June 8, 2019 at 9:22 am

  6. Liana

    β€œTracks of time”

    You do that.

    May 1, 2019 at 8:10 pm

    • Thank you, Liana….

      June 8, 2019 at 9:22 am

  7. So many gems here, visual and literary….their growing, thriving and dying….access was simply granted by desire….you have a way with communication of many kinds, I’d say. Beautiful criss-crossing skeletons…

    May 25, 2019 at 2:08 pm

  8. I had/have been slowly re-reading Robert MacFarlane’s “The Old Ways” and wanted to get out and find some trails and marks of passing in my own backyard, as it were…and this post is what resulted from the unplanned ensuing exploration. Thank you for your words, Lynn. πŸ™‚

    June 8, 2019 at 9:30 am

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