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Landowner reopens gate to popular swimming hole in Christian County

Published: Sep. 17, 2021 at 12:21 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - The gates to a popular swimming hole in Christian County reopened to the public. It comes after a court battle in which a judge ruled the road along the Finley River access known as Lindenlure is public.

Property owners blocked Canyon Road at the access in March 2020. Judge Laura Johnson gave the owners a deadline of Thursday to reopen the property. They did.

The lawsuit also involved Christian County, but the judge did not order the county to maintain the road, although it was found to be public. The entrance to the road is a little rough, but open to those willing to give it a try. It appears someone already knocked down some of the overgrowth near the gates.

Landowners put up the gates to stop bad behavior, such as littering and other criminal activity. Of course, landowners and those who waited many months to return to Lindenlure, like Kevin Ross, hope that people will treat it with respect.

“Absolutely, if people would come down here and take care of it like their own, and unfortunately, some of those people do take care of it like their own,” said Ross. “Their homes are probably just as trashy as they leave this place. Hopefully it’ll change, and just hope for the best.”

David Romano, who led the fight for access, says he and other members of the River Access Coalition https://riveraccesscoalition.org/ will meet at the access Saturday at 3 p.m. They invite others who are passionate about Lindenlure to join them.

“We need everybody to treat that right as a privilege,” Romano says. “That means cleaning up after yourself, cleaning up after others if necessary, behaving when you’re down here, not trespassing over the ordinary high water mark.”

Earlier this week, the landowners filed a motion asking the judge to reconsider the judgement. Neither the landowners nor their attorney returned phone calls on Friday.

“It’s time we move forward. For a small fraction of the money that it would cost to continue arguing this in court with an appeal, the landowners can use just a fraction of that money to get some cameras up here, to help the sheriff get more patrols out here,” says Romano. “Our group can use its money for cleanups and for signs if they’ll let us place them up.”

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