View Full Version : Trespassing and caving

09-05-2009, 07:14 AM
A friend recently took me to a cave he just discovered. This cave starts out on Boulder County open space, but travels towards a private property line. There are several entrances to the cave, and two of them pop up on private property. Another caver that I was with seemed very certain that unless the property owner had mineral rights that we were not trespassing. Does anybody know for sure? When you buy land are you just buying the surface or do you own any caves that are found there, If not then who owns the cave?

09-06-2009, 08:49 AM
Did you get the answer you wanted on the NSS board? That's a tricky question. If you buy land, you are buying surface rights unless you purchase mineral rights in addition to buying the land. Like others have said, I don't think a cave is considered a mineral resource. It is a void. I wonder how commercial caves hold claim to their caves. The tricky part is the multiple entrances. I'm sure TAG cavers would have more experience with multi-entrance caves and private property. Maybe someone else will chime in here or on the NSS board. I know around here, a lot of mineral rights have been bought up by the oil and gas companies. With the explosion of gas drilling in recent years, property owners have gone to purchase minerals rights to their property, only to find out that they are owned by someone else. Usually, it's the gas companies or the government.

09-07-2009, 05:41 AM

I guess I got an answer. I need to find out who owns the mineral rights for that property first.