MeatEater's Auction House of Oddities is Back Again in Support of Public Land Access

MeatEater's Auction House of Oddities is Back Again in Support of Public Land Access

We’re happy to announce that MeatEater’s Auction House of Oddities is up and running once again!

After careful consideration, we’ve decided that proceeds from the spring Auction House of Oddities and the 2024 Land Access Initiative (LAI) will fund the ongoing legal fees of the Wyoming corner crossing case. (For more information on the background of this case, take a look at Jordan Sillars' article here.)

“While I admit that this decision to use the Auction House and LAI funds to pay legal fees may appear to be a departure from how the funds were used in the past—securing access to one particular location—the risk-reward here for public land users cannot be understated,” MeatEater’s Director of Conservation, Ryan Callaghan, said.

Currently, over 8 million acres of state and federal lands are out of reach of the public due to being “corner-locked” by about 27,000 corners. In other words, this public land will remain inaccessible if corner crossing is deemed illegal.

"To see how much this case matters for access, check out onX's Corner-Locked Report,” Cal said. “The outcome of the judge's decision could give access to over 8 million acres of public property across multiple western states. When you think of it that way, there isn’t a better place to cut a check right now.”

So far, the four Missouri hunters who were charged with trespassing in Wyoming haven’t lost a case. They were cleared of criminal trespassing and most recently earned a victory in a civil suit in which the judge ruled that public land users who corner-cross are immune from civil liability: “The Court finds that where a person corner crosses on foot within the checkerboard from public land to public land without touching the surface of private land and without damaging private property, there is no liability for trespass,” Judge Skavdahl wrote in his 32-page ruling.

But this fight is far from over. Right now, the U.S. District Court for the District of Wyoming’s May 2023 ruling that corner crossing on foot from one section of public land to the next section without touching or damaging the adjacent private land is not an actionable trespass is being reviewed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.

The plaintiff, Iron Bar Holdings, has appealed Judge Skavdahl’s decision to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. This leg of the legal battle will require approximately $35,000.

Whichever way the Tenth Circuit rules—upholding the District Court’s decision or reversing it—that ruling will be the law of the land for six Western states, Oklahoma, Kansas, New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, and Utah plus those portions of Yellowstone National Park extending into Montana and Idaho.

The Tenth Circuit will hear oral argument in the case on May 14, 2024, at 9:00 am in Denver. A decision is expected in the following three to four months.

And, either way the Tenth Circuit rules, the only court left to review the issue would be the Supreme Court of the United States.

All proceeds from this round of the Auction House of Oddities will go directly to Wyoming BHA’s Corner Crossing Legal Defense Fund. Click here to donate directly to the fund.

Wyoming is where the massive debate surrounding the legality of corner crossing started. It also has the most land of any state—over two million acres—that is locked in a checkerboard. In recognition of the Cowboy State (and for all you Pokes fans out there), we have a Limited “Cowpoke” Edition Weatherby Mark V Rifle chambered in .300 Win. Mag. open for bidding in the Auction House.

And be sure to check out the pair of custom oars built just for you by the man, the myth, the legend himself, Pat Durkin. We also have a one-of-a-kind muskrat FHF Chest Rig, a llama-guided fishing trip in Wyoming’s Snowy Range, and so much more.

So go check out MeatEater’s Auction House of Oddities right now and place your bid to support public access for years to come!

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