Why isn’t Pine Creek Road ‘grandfathered in?’

I have been a resident of Pine Creek for 45 years. For the first nine years of that time we accessed our property through what is now the “locked gate” area to get to our home. After that we moved down to our present home and view the road’s daily traffic. Pine Creek has been well used by everyone from all over all year whether hiking, four wheeling, skiing, sledding, fishing, hunting, riding horses, and having campfires in the many fire rings that dot the road, with no problem. A few different logging concerns owned the property before this new owner who is not a newcomer to the area. After moving down from our former home to our new home, the “locked gate” property was logged by one of the logging concerns. I was friends with some local historians who told me some Pine Creek history. Right past the “locked gate” there was a bridge across the river where people from Baker City and the area would come to picnic. At one time you could see the timbers of what supported the bridge though they are now gone. Right past the “locked gate” was a stamp mill. The road bed of our first home was built on the old ditch which brought water to run the stamp mill. There was a sawmill at the junction of the road to our former home. There were piles of slab wood there until after the logging. The main road was the way to the Baisley Elkhorn Mines which was a thriving community in its day, the thoroughfare being built in 1889. The middle mine usually has a mining claim on it. People have had to access this road for the upkeep of Pine Creek Reservoir for the usage of water for the valley’s ranchers and farmers. Pine Creek has been a well used road through all the years by many many people. From the viewpoint of history and all of Pine Creek Road’s usage, what has happened to “grandfather rights?”

Lynne Zwanziger

Baker County

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