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County to Take Up Peavine Shooting Concerns at May Meeting

By Bob Conrad
peaving shooting sign
peaving shooting sign

Sign entering trailhead on Peavine Mountain. Photo: Bob Conrad.

Peavine Mountain has been plagued with complaints about shooting near homes for years, and the Washoe Board of County Commissioners is expected to take up the issue at a meeting in May.

Commissioner Jeanne Herman said at Tuesday’s County Commission meeting that she is working with the county community services department and Washoe County Sheriff’s Office to develop a multiple-use plan for the area, where shooting will be allowed in designated areas.

Kitty Jung

Commissioner Kitty Jung

The new plan comes in the wake of historic conflicts between shooters and hikers and bikers.

Commissioner Kitty Jung said that the plan is needed quickly because of safety concerns but that hikers bear some responsibility for their safety.

“Unfortunately, I want to say this to the hikers: Please talk to your group too because we’ve got reports that hikers can be quite aggressive, walking into these people and telling them, ‘you can’t shoot here,'” she said Tuesday. “I think you should wear an orange vest, I think you should have a whistle, I think you need to take responsibility for your own safety.”

Jung stressed that the plan needs to be developed quickly before anyone gets shot and that the Sheriff’s Office is going to step up enforcement. The Sheriff’s Office encourages residents to call 785-9276 to report illegal shooting.

A Facebook group, “Promoting Safety on Peavine Trails,” tracks and monitors shooting concerns on Peavine.



Midtown Girl April 21, 2016 - 7:38 am

Is Kommish Kitty blaming the victims here?

Radcliffe April 16, 2016 - 6:44 am

The response by Commissioner Kitty Jung is dismissive at best regarding the safety of Peavine Mountain area users – who are unarmed. Perhaps the commissioner needs a reminder about how guns work, she might use the internet and learn that an explosion and resulting gas charge in a tubular chamber launches projectiles at high velocity with an ability to travel very long distances.

When people shoot guns into the sides of a mountain (like Peavine), into bodies of water (like Kiowa pond) and in general at targets (like the stolen cars pulled from Kiowa pond), a secondary risk known as a ricochet can endanger or hit unintended targets. When hikers and bikers, who do not belong to said “group” are unaware of such risks, they might finds themselves within an area of risk resulting from people shooting guns. They may find themselves far out of the sight (orange vest), sounds (whistles) of shooters and does not permit unarmed users as the commissioner states have the “need to take responsibility for your own safety”.

I am a gun owner currently and have been since my early years growing up in a remote area, where hunting was a way of life. Shooting guns requires a responsibility on the part of the shooter to ensure the safety of the others, a no-brainer here is shooters should always find places where ricochets are given consideration. Reno has grown, more people means more hikers and Peavine is near the city, this means once acceptable shooting areas may now not be, and there are plenty of places further outside of town to target practice. And by the way commissioner, I carry a whistle when I hike and I also carry a gun because shooters notice other gunfire much better than a whistle and orange vest. I’m going to use your logic that as an armed user, my status is greater than that of an unarmed user.

Going beyond the commissioners short sighted response, our society now has many combat veterans who suffer from PTSD, and call Reno home. Constant shooting and feeling endangered from gunfire is just one more concern I have living next to Peavine Mountain. I have seen young people riding motorcycles and off road groups, horse back riders, dog walkers, elderly walkers, school buses in nearby housing areas, public and utility workers on service roads, Stead Airport low level flights, and federally protected eagles – all around, below and above the shooting areas on Peavine. There are far too many risks and only group is endangering all others – the shooters with little regard for those they can not see, hear or don’t care to consider.

Perhaps the commissioner should focus on how to provide that diverse population using Peavine Mountain instead of labeling them all into the hiker “group” she suggests bares the responsibility of safety, even more perhaps the commissioner should think about her role as a public official regarding public safety, for the unarmed users of the mountain.

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