TITLE XVIII
FISH AND GAME

Chapter 212
PROPAGATION OF FISH AND GAME

Acquisition of Land, Etc.

Section 212:1

    212:1 Acquisition by Purchase, Lease or Gift. – The state may acquire title to or control of lands or waters, or hunting or fishing or other rights on private lands or waters, suitable for the protection and propagation of fish, game and fur-bearing animals, or for fishing or hunting or administrative purposes, by purchase, lease or gift.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:1.

Section 212:1-a

    212:1-a Acquisition by Condemnation; Hearing Before Governor and Council. – The governor, with the advice of the council, on his own motion or a special committee of 3 persons appointed by the governor and council for the purpose, may determine, upon hearing, whether there is occasion for the state to own any lands or water rights that are needed for fish and game department uses for the protection, regulation and management of wildlife resources and implementation of department programs and, if so, the governor, with the advice of the council, shall appoint a commission of 3 persons who may purchase land or other property in the proposed location. Such land and water rights shall be in a location proposed by the executive director of the fish and game department. All property rights acquired under the provisions of this section shall be in fee simple including property acquired by condemnation proceedings. Any such lands or water rights which cannot be acquired by agreement with the owner or owners thereof may be acquired in accordance with RSA 498-A.

Source. 1993, 241:1, eff. July 1, 1993.

Section 212:1-b

    212:1-b Acquisition by Condemnation; Hearing Before Commission. – The governor, with advice of the council, may appoint a commission of 3 persons who, upon hearing, shall determine whether there is occasion for the state to own any lands or water rights that are needed for fish and game department uses for the protection and management of wildlife resources and implementation of department programs, and if so, the commission may purchase land or other property in the proposed location. Such lands or water rights shall be in a location proposed by the executive director of the fish and game department. Any such land or property which cannot be acquired by agreement with the owner or owners thereof may be acquired in accordance with RSA 498-A. All property rights acquired under the provisions of this section shall be in fee simple, including property acquired by condemnation proceedings.

Source. 1993, 241:1, eff. July 1, 1993.

Section 212:1-c

    212:1-c Owners Defined. – For purposes of this subdivision, "owners" shall include tenants for life or years, remaindermen, reversioners, municipal lienholders or holders of undischarged mortgages of record whose mortgages are dated not earlier than 20 years prior to the date of filing such petition.

Source. 1993, 241:1, eff. July 1, 1993.

Section 212:1-d

    212:1-d Oath of Commissioners. – Persons appointed to the commission shall be sworn to act faithfully and impartially in the performance of their duties, and the certificate of each oath shall be returned to the secretary of state.

Source. 1993, 241:1, eff. July 1, 1993.

Section 212:1-e

    212:1-e Notice of Hearing. – The governor with the advice of the council, or the commission appointed by the governor with advice of council, at least 14 days prior to hearing, shall cause notice in writing of the time and place of hearing appointed by them, together with a description of the proposed location to be given to each owner of land or other property in the proposed location and to the clerk of any city or town in which said land or other property is located.

Source. 1993, 241:1, eff. July 1, 1993.

Section 212:1-f

    212:1-f Method of Giving Notice. –
I. When the owner resides or lives within the state, notice shall be given to the owner in person or left at the abode or sent to the owner by certified mail.
II. When the owner does not reside or live within the state, notice may be given to the person, if any, who has the care or possession of the land, or may be sent by registered mail to the owner's last known address.
III. If the owner is a person under guardianship or conservatorship, notice shall be given to the owner's guardian or conservator. If the owner is under any legal disability, a guardian or conservator may be appointed.
IV. When the owner or resident is unknown or uncertain, a copy of such notice, when posted in 2 public places in the city or town in which the land is situated, at least 14 days previous to hearing, shall be deemed sufficient notice to such owner.

Source. 1993, 241:1, eff. July 1, 1993.

Section 212:1-g

    212:1-g Hearing. – The governor and council, or the commission, at the time and place appointed for hearing shall make a personal examination of the proposed location, shall hear all the parties interested who may attend, and may adjourn as they see cause. They may admit or reject any evidence offered and there shall be no appeal from their findings on the matter of the occasion for the state to own any lands or water rights needed for fish and game department uses for the protection, regulation and management of wildlife resources and implementation of department programs, in the absence of fraud or gross mistake.

Source. 1993, 241:1, eff. July 1, 1993.

Section 212:2

    212:2 Repealed by 1993, 241:5, I, eff. July 1, 1993. –

Section 212:3

    212:3 Repealed by 1993, 241:5, II, eff. July 1, 1993. –

Section 212:4

    212:4 Repealed by 1993, 241:5, III, eff. July 1, 1993. –

Section 212:5

    212:5 Repealed by 1993, 241:5, IV, eff. July 1, 1993. –

Section 212:6

    212:6 Repealed by 1993, 241:5, V, eff. July 1, 1993. –

Section 212:7

    212:7 Title and Control. – The title to any land acquired by purchase, gift, or lease, shall be approved by the attorney general and shall be taken by the executive director in the name of the state. The deed to any such land or property shall be deposited with the secretary of state. The entire control of such land shall be under the direction of the executive director.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:7.

Section 212:8

    212:8 Reasonable Price. – The executive director, with the approval of the governor and council, may pay a fair and reasonable price for waters, lands or rights therein with or without buildings, required for the establishment of fish hatcheries, game farms, game refuges and fish and game department uses for the protection, regulation and management of wildlife resources and the implementation of department programs. The executive director, subject to the approval of the governor and council, may expend for the purchase of land, waters or rights therein during any year only such total sum as may be appropriated therefor. The executive director shall, within its biennial report pursuant to RSA 20:7, make a report of all lands, waters or rights therein so acquired since the last report to the senate president and the speaker of the house.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:8. RSA 212:8. 1969, 146:1. 1993, 241:2, eff. July 1, 1993. 2015, 259:28, eff. July 1, 2015.

Section 212:9

    212:9 Sale and Exchange. – Whenever the executive director shall deem it to be in the best interests of the state, he may, with the consent of the governor, authorize the sale or exchange of any lands, or any part thereof, to which title has been acquired by purchase, gift, lease or condemnation, together with the buildings, improvements, and appurtenances thereon, for privately owned lands of equal or greater value, and suitable for fish and game department uses for the protection, regulation and management of wildlife resources, implementation of department programs, or administrative purposes.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:9. RSA 212:9. 1993, 241:3, eff. July 1, 1993.

Section 212:10

    212:10 Use of Lands. – Lands to which title has been acquired by the state, or which have been leased, or any part thereof, may be used for the purpose of creating and maintaining game refuges, or for fish and game department uses for the protection, regulation and management of wildlife resources, implementation of department programs, and as much thereof as is deemed necessary may be used for the administration of such lands. The executive director of the fish and game department, after consultation with the director, division of forests and lands, department of natural and cultural resources, may cut and remove and sell, or permit the cutting or removing and selling of timber, on lands to which title has been acquired by the state. The executive director of the fish and game department may sell or otherwise dispose of buildings or other improvements on lands acquired under this chapter, whenever such buildings or improvements are no longer of use to the state, except that no building or improvements valued at $100 or more shall be sold without the approval of the governor.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:10. RSA 212:10. 1993, 241:4, eff. July 1, 1993. 2017, 156:14, I, eff. July 1, 2017.

Section 212:10-a

    212:10-a Connecticut Lakes Headwaters Tract Natural Areas Camp Leases. – The executive director of the fish and game department shall make contracts for the leasing of seasonal camp lots within the Connecticut Lakes headwaters tract natural areas, which were in existence at the time of the state's acquisition of the tract, for periods not exceeding 5 years. All such contracts extending for a period of more than 5 years or for an annual consideration of more than $5,000 shall be approved by the governor and council prior to being effective. All money collected from the leasing of seasonal camp lots within the Connecticut Lakes headwaters tract natural areas shall be credited to the fish and game fund established under RSA 206:33.

Source. 2004, 45:4, eff. July 2, 2004.

Section 212:10-b

    212:10-b Leases and Privileges. –
I. The executive director of the fish and game department may execute leases or contracts for the short-term use of buildings or lands owned by the department. All such leases or contracts extending for a cumulative period of more than 30 days or for a consideration of more than $5,000 shall be approved by the governor and council prior to being effective. All such leases and contracts shall be consistent with the purposes of Title XVIII. All money collected from such contracts and leases shall be credited to the fish and game fund established under RSA 206:33.
II. The executive director of the fish and game department may assign department housing without charge to a classified employee, including only, any or all of the following utilities: heat, fuel, gas, electricity, and water; provided, that said housing is being furnished for the operational convenience of the department, the housing is on state property administered and managed by the department, and the classified employee is required to accept such lodging as a condition of employment.

Source. 2005, 127:1, eff. Aug. 14, 2005.

State Fish and Game Refuges

Section 212:11

    212:11 Establishment. – The executive director, in conjunction with the commissioner of agriculture, markets, and food, may establish and maintain state fish and game refuges for the protection and propagation of fish, game, and fur-bearing animals, on all or any portion of the state fish and game lands, wherein fish, game, and fur-bearing animals shall not be hunted, pursued, taken, disturbed, or molested at any time except as provided in RSA 212:15. They may also, with and by the consent of the proper authorities, establish and maintain such refuges on state forests, national forests, or otherwise publicly owned lands or waters within the state. They may also establish and maintain such refuges on privately owned lands with the consent of the owner and abutters, for such purposes. No such refuge shall exceed in area 1/2 of the total area of the state or national forest on which it is located, nor shall it exceed 2,500 acres in area, if not located on a state or national forest. No such refuge exceeding 500 acres in area shall be established within 10 miles of another such refuge.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:11. 1949, 60:1. RSA 212:11. 1995, 130:5, eff. July 23, 1995.

Section 212:12

    212:12 St. Paul's School Game Refuge. – The limitation as to distance between state fish and game refuges, provided for in RSA 212:11, shall not prohibit the establishment of such a game refuge on premises belonging to St. Paul's School in the city of Concord, provided the owners and abutters consent to the establishment of such a refuge, under the procedure set forth in RSA 212:11. If such a refuge is established the boundary on the north of said refuge shall be the Hopkinton road and the expense of policing the refuge shall be assumed by St. Paul's School.

Source. 1939, 26:1. RL 246:12.

Section 212:13

    212:13 Bear Brook Refuge. – The limitations as to the area within refuges on publicly owned lands and as to distances between refuges as provided for in RSA 212:11 shall not prohibit the establishment of a game refuge on the Bear Brook area so-called in the towns of Allenstown, Deerfield, Candia and Hooksett transferred from the United States to the state of New Hampshire for public park, recreational and conservation purposes, provided that not less than 2,000 acres within the boundaries of the area shall be open to hunting according to the laws of this state from October 1 to March 15 and that all of said area shall be open to fishing in accordance with the laws of this state. If such a refuge is established, the expense of policing the refuge shall be assumed by the executive director.

Source. 1943, 158:1. 1947, 152:1. RSA 212:13. 1957, 253:1, eff. Oct. 1, 1957.

Section 212:14

    212:14 Taking of Deer by Bow and Arrow. – In addition to the area open to hunting as provided by RSA 212:13, when in the opinion of the executive director of the fish and game department and by agreement with the department of natural and cultural resources it is to be deemed in the interest of good game management practices, said Bear Brook Game Refuge may be open to the taking of deer by bow and arrow under such regulations as may be prescribed by the executive director of the fish and game department.

Source. 1947, 152:2, eff. May 20, 1947. 2017, 156:14, I, eff. July 1, 2017.

Section 212:15

    212:15 Taking of Game in. – Any game refuge may be open to the taking of any particular species of game, game bird or fur-bearing animal at any time and by any means under such regulations as may be prescribed by the executive director.

Source. 1949, 60:2, eff. Mar. 11, 1949.

Section 212:16

    212:16 Boundary Lines; Notices. – Each game refuge shall be surrounded by a well defined line, road, or cleared strip of land, and in the discretion of the executive director, by wire at the boundary thereof. On the boundary of each such refuge, there shall be posted in conspicuous places, not more than 150 yards apart, notices bearing the following: "State Game Refuge-Hunting is Unlawful," and such other information or rules or regulations as the executive director may deem advisable.

Source. 1935, 124:6. 1937, 188:21. RL 246:13.

Section 212:17

    212:17 Penalty. – Any person found upon a state game refuge, except as may be permitted under RSA 212:15, or upon any land under the control of the executive director, which has been established by the executive director as an area for the propagation of game, who discharges a firearm for the purpose of taking wildlife, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

Source. 1937, 188:19. RL 246:14. 1949, 60:3. RSA 212:17. 1973, 528:124, eff. Oct. 31, 1973 at 11:59 p.m. 2012, 125:1, eff. Jan. 1, 2013.

Public Hunting and Fishing Grounds

Section 212:18

    212:18 Maintenance. – The state may acquire by purchase, lease or gift, hunting and fishing rights to lands or waters and rights of access thereto suitable for fishing and hunting and maintain thereon public fishing and hunting grounds.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:15.

Rules and Regulations

Section 212:19

    212:19 Adoption, Posting, Etc. – The executive director may formulate, adopt, and post such rules and regulations for the government of lands and waters under his control including state game refuges, and for the protection and propagation of fish, game, fur-bearing animals and marine species thereon, as he may deem necessary for their proper use and administration, or as may be established pursuant to agreements with the director, division of forests and lands, department of natural and cultural resources, or proper federal authority or lessors.

Source. 1935, 124:6. 1937, 188:20. RL 246:16. RSA 212:19. 1975, 340:12, eff. Aug. 6, 1975. 2017, 156:14, I, eff. July 1, 2017.

Section 212:20

    212:20 Penalty for Violating Rules. – Any person who violates any rule adopted by the executive director made under the provisions of RSA 212:19 shall be guilty of a violation if a natural person, or guilty of a misdemeanor if any other person.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:17. RSA 212:20. 1973, 528:125. 1997, 9:4, eff. Jan. 1, 1998.

Section 212:20-a

    212:20-a Repealed by 1983, 47:3, eff. May 2, 1983. –

Propagation by the State

Section 212:21

    212:21 Executive Director's Powers. – The executive director may take, remove or transfer fish, game, fur-bearing animals and marine species at such times, in such manner, and from such places as he may deem proper for the protection or propagation thereof.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:18. RSA 212:21. 1975, 340:13, eff. Aug. 6, 1975.

Section 212:22

    212:22 Sale. – The executive director may sell or exchange fish, including the eggs or fry thereof, birds or the eggs thereof, game, and fur-bearing animals, with or to other states or individuals.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:19.

Section 212:23

    212:23 Accounts. – The executive director shall keep an itemized account of all such sales or exchanges, and include the same in his biennial report to the governor and council pursuant to RSA 20:7, and shall remit to the state treasurer all money received under the provisions of this subdivision, to be credited to the fish and game fund.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:20. 2015, 259:29, eff. July 1, 2015.

Section 212:24

    212:24 Federal Aid. – The state of New Hampshire hereby assents to the provisions of the acts of Congress entitled the "Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Act," to provide that the United States shall aid the states in wildlife restoration projects, and for other purposes, 16 U.S.C. section 669 et seq., as amended, and the "Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Act," to provide that the United States shall aid the states in fish restoration and management projects, and for other purposes, 16 U.S.C. section 777 et seq., as amended. The fish and game department, or any other state agency permitted by said act of Congress, are hereby authorized and empowered to perform such acts as may be necessary to the conduct and establishment of co-operative wildlife restoration and fish restoration and management projects as defined in said acts of Congress, in compliance with the said acts and rules and regulations promulgated by the Secretary of the Interior thereunder. Provided, that any funds accruing to the state of New Hampshire from license fees paid by hunters and fishermen shall be diverted to no other purpose than the administration of the duly authorized activities of the fish and game department.

Source. 1951, 152:1. 2009, 7:1, eff. June 16, 2009.

Propagation by Private Persons

Section 212:25

    212:25 Permit Required. –
I. No person shall propagate or sell, dead or alive, wildlife or the eggs or progeny thereof, or operate a hunting preserve, without first obtaining a permit from the executive director except as permitted under title XVIII. The executive director shall have the authority to determine the time period and any other conditions governing the issuance of such permit. The executive director may refuse to issue a permit if he determines that such issuance may pose significant disease, genetic, ecological, environmental, health, safety, or welfare risks to persons or wildlife.
II. The executive director shall adopt rules, pursuant to RSA 541-A relative to the taking, permitting, inspection, possession, processing, sale, rearing, harvesting, identifying, releasing and transportation of wildlife as related to the propagation or selling of wildlife, or the operation of a hunting preserve, including, but not limited to:
(a) The size, sex, number and quantity possessed, processed or imported.
(b) The areas to be opened or closed to their harvesting, rearing, and releasing.
(c) The method and manner of harvest.
(d) The transportation within or through the state of New Hampshire and its waters.
(e) The sale, inspection, processing, and marking.
(f) Method of keeping.
(g) Method of recapture.
(h) Permit fee schedules.
(i) Appropriate definitions.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:21. RSA 212:25. 1992, 171:8. 1994, 153:3, eff. Jan. 1, 1995.

Section 212:25-a

    212:25-a Special Permit to Keep and Propagate Wild Turkeys. – No person shall import any species of wild turkey, hybrid wild turkey, or wild turkey-domestic turkey cross or any egg of these species into New Hampshire. Any person in possession of wild turkeys, hybrid wild turkeys, or wild turkey-domestic turkey crosses or the egg of any of these species when this section takes effect shall be permitted to keep or propagate them or both by special permit from the executive director. A person not an employee of the fish and game department acting in his official capacity as an employee of that department or a person not acting under the supervision of, by the orders of, and in the presence of an employee of the fish and game department shall not sell, give away, or release into the wild a live wild turkey, hybrid wild turkey, or wild turkey-domestic turkey cross, or any fertile egg of any of these species. Any person holding a permit under this section shall submit to the executive director a report by December 31 of each year stating the number and sex of wild turkeys, hybrid wild turkeys, or wild turkey-domestic turkey crosses in his possession.

Source. 1973, 23:1. 1975, 114:2. 1977, 459:3, eff. Sept. 10, 1977.

Section 212:26

    212:26 Application; Revocation or Suspension. – Such licenses shall be issued by the executive director, in his discretion, upon application in writing, and shall be subject to revocation and suspension at any time, in the discretion of the executive director.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:22. RSA 212:26. 1963, 135:1. 1986, 214:6. 1992, 171:9, eff. June 7, 1992.

Section 212:27 to 212:30

    212:27 to 212:30 Repealed by 1992, 171:12, V, eff. June 7, 1992. –

Section 212:30-a

    212:30-a Sale of Fresh Water Fish Raised Outside of State. –
I. Fresh water fish raised outside the state may be possessed, bought and sold for use as food, provided that for each package there shall be a bill of sale bearing the species of fish, the weight of the package, and the place of origin. Said bill of sale shall remain with the package until sold.
II. Any hotel, restaurant or retail store wishing to sell fresh water fish raised outside the state shall be required to have a bill of sale accompanying said fresh water fish until sold or eaten. Said bill of sale shall bear the species of fish, the number of pounds and the name of the wholesale dealer from whom the fish was purchased.

Source. 1955, 33:2. 1959, 11:2. 1973, 301:1. 1975, 339:1. 1996, 108:19, eff. Jan. 1, 1997.

Section 212:30-b, 212:30-c

    212:30-b, 212:30-c Repealed by 1992, 171:12, V, eff. June 7, 1992. –

Section 212:30-d

    212:30-d Sale of Venison Imported from Outside the State. –
I. Notwithstanding the provisions of RSA 208:11, venison, including the species red deer and elk (Cervus elaphus), but not including Virginia white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), imported from outside the state may be possessed, bought, and sold for use as food, provided that for each shipment there shall be a bill of sale bearing the date of purchase, the species of venison, the total weight of the shipment, and the place of origin. Said bill of sale shall remain with the shipment until the entire shipment has been sold.
II. The packaging on all imported deer meat or venison which is offered for sale within this state shall be clearly labeled or marked with the country or state of origin.
III. Resident and nonresident wholesalers who wish to sell imported venison in this state as permitted in paragraph I shall procure a wholesaler's license from the department of fish and game to do so, the fee for which shall be set by the executive director pursuant to RSA 206:10, I. Said license shall expire on December 31 of each calendar year. Wholesalers shall provide bills of sale in duplicate, one copy of which shall be given to the retail seller, and the other copy of which shall be retained as a file copy by the wholesaler and shall be available for inspection by any agent of the executive director.
III-a. Resident wholesalers licensed pursuant to paragraph III may import venison, including the species red deer and elk (Cervus elaphus), but not including Virginia white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), into this state.
IV. Retail outlets, including hotels and restaurants, shall only sell venison purchased from a licensed wholesale dealer as set forth in paragraph III or permitted propagator as set forth in RSA 212:30-e, I.
V. Any person convicted under this section shall be guilty of a violation if a natural person and guilty of a misdemeanor if any other person.

Source. 1983, 139:1. 1992, 92:1, 2. 1993, 237:4-6. 1994, 153:1, eff. Jan. 1, 1995. 2015, 186:23, eff. July 1, 2015.

Section 212:30-e

    212:30-e Sale of Venison Raised by Licensed Propagators. –
I. Notwithstanding the provisions of RSA 208:11, deer carcasses or venison, including the species red deer and elk (Cervus elaphus), but not including Virginia white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) raised within the state by persons holding a valid permit issued pursuant to RSA 212:25, may be possessed, bought and sold pursuant to the requirements set forth in this section.
II. The sale of Virginia white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) carcasses or venison for food shall be prohibited. Nothing in this paragraph shall prohibit the hunting or taking of Virginia white-tailed deer by a person hunting with permission on premises authorized pursuant to RSA 212:25 for the taking of Virginia white-tailed deer. The provisions of RSA 208:11 shall apply to all Virginia white-tailed deer so taken.
III. For each sale of deer carcasses or venison as permitted by this section, there shall be a bill of sale bearing the date of purchase, the species of venison, the total weight of the deer carcass or venison, the name and address of the purchaser, and the name, address and permit number of the propagator making the sale. The bill of sale shall remain with the deer carcass or venison as long as it remains in this state.
IV. The propagator making the sale shall provide bills of sale in duplicate, one copy of which shall be given to the customer, and the other copy of which shall be retained as a file copy by the propagator and shall be available for inspection by any agent of the executive director.
V. No person other than one licensed to propagate deer, including the species red deer and elk (Cervus elaphus), shall be permitted to sell deer carcasses or venison pursuant to this section; provided, however, a person who has obtained the appropriate resident or nonresident wholesaler's license described in RSA 212:30-d, III shall be permitted to purchase deer carcasses or venison pursuant to this section for resale.
VI. Any person convicted under this section shall be guilty of a violation if a natural person and guilty of a misdemeanor if any other person.

Source. 1990, 51:1. 1992, 92:3, 4. 1993, 237:7. 1994, 153:2, eff. Jan. 1, 1995.

Section 212:31

    212:31 Repealed by 1993, 236:2, eff. Jan. 1, 1994. –

Section 212:32

    212:32 Rights Protected. – Any person who shall hunt, capture, take or kill any fish, game or fur-bearing animals from any lands or waters covered by such license, without the permission of the licensee, shall be guilty of a violation.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:27. RSA 212:32. 1973, 528:126. 1992, 171:10, eff. June 7, 1992.

Section 212:33

    212:33 Penalty. – A licensee who violates any of the provisions of this subdivision or who violates any rule adopted by the executive director governing such private propagation shall forfeit his license and be guilty of a violation.

Source. 1935, 124:6. RL 246:28. RSA 212:33. 1973, 528:127. 1992, 171:11, eff. June 7, 1992.

Liability of Landowners

Section 212:34

    212:34 Duty of Care. –
I. In this section:
(a) "Charge" means a payment or fee paid by a person to the landowner for entry upon, or use of the premises, for outdoor recreational activity.
(b) "Landowner" means an owner, lessee, holder of an easement, occupant of the premises, or person managing, controlling, or overseeing the premises on behalf of such owner, lessee, holder of an easement, or occupant of the premises.
(c) "Outdoor recreational activity" means outdoor recreational pursuits including, but not limited to, hunting, fishing, trapping, camping, horseback riding, bicycling, water sports, winter sports, snowmobiling as defined in RSA 215-C:1, XV, operating an OHRV as defined in RSA 215-A:1, V, hiking, ice and rock climbing or bouldering, or sightseeing upon or removing fuel wood from the premises.
(d) "Premises" means the land owned, managed, controlled, or overseen by the landowner upon which the outdoor recreational activity subject to this section occurs.
(e) "Ancillary facilities" means facilities commonly associated with outdoor recreational activities, including but not limited to, parking lots, warming shelters, restrooms, outhouses, bridges, and culverts.
II. A landowner owes no duty of care to keep the premises safe for entry or use by others for outdoor recreational activity or to give any warning of hazardous conditions, uses of, structures, or activities on such premises to persons entering for such purposes, except as provided in paragraph V.
II-a. Except as provided in paragraph V, a landowner who permits the use of his or her land for outdoor recreational activity pursuant to this section and who does not charge a fee or seek any other consideration in exchange for allowing such use, owes no duty of care to persons on the premises who are engaged in the construction, maintenance, or expansion of trails or ancillary facilities for outdoor recreational activity.
III. A landowner who gives permission to another to enter or use the premises for outdoor recreational activity does not thereby:
(a) Extend any assurance that the premises are safe for such purpose;
(b) Confer to the person to whom permission has been granted the legal status of an invitee to whom a duty of care is owed; or
(c) Assume responsibility for or incur liability for an injury to person or property caused by any act of such person to whom permission has been granted, except as provided in paragraph V.
IV. Any warning given by a landowner, whether oral or by sign, guard, or issued by other means, shall not be the basis of liability for a claim that such warning was inadequate or insufficient unless otherwise required under subparagraph V(a).
V. This section does not limit the liability which otherwise exists:
(a) For willful or malicious failure to guard or warn against a dangerous condition, use, structure or activity;
(b) For injury suffered in any case where permission to enter or use the premises for outdoor recreational activity was granted for a charge other than the consideration if any, paid to said landowner by the state;
(c) When the injury was caused by acts of persons to whom permission to enter or use the premises for outdoor recreational activity was granted, to third persons as to whom the landowner owed a duty to keep the premises safe or to warn of danger; or
(d) When the injury suffered was caused by the intentional act of the landowner.
VI. Except as provided in paragraph V, no cause of action shall exist for a person injured using the premises as provided in paragraph II, engaged in the construction, maintenance, or expansion of trails or ancillary facilities as provided in paragraph II-a, or given permission as provided in paragraph III.
VII. If, as to any action against a landowner, the court finds against the claimant because of the application of this section, it shall determine whether the claimant had a reasonable basis for bringing the action, and if no reasonable basis is found, shall order the claimant to pay for the reasonable attorneys' fees and costs incurred by the landowner in defending against the action.
VIII. It is recognized that outdoor recreational activities may be hazardous. Therefore, each person who participates in outdoor recreational activities accepts, as a matter of law, the dangers inherent in such activities, and shall not maintain an action against an owner, occupant, or lessee of land for any injuries which result from such inherent risks, dangers, or hazards. The categories of such risks, hazards, or dangers which the outdoor recreational participant assumes as a matter of law include, but are not limited to, the following: variations in terrain, trails, paths, or roads, surface or subsurface snow or ice conditions, bare spots, rocks, trees, stumps, and other forms of forest growth or debris, structures on the land, equipment not in use, pole lines, fences, and collisions with other objects or persons.

Source. 1961, 201:1. 1969, 77:1-3. 1973, 560:4. 1977, 208:1. 1981, 538:7. 2003, 29:1. 2005, 172:2; 210:11. 2010, 131:1, eff. Jan. 1, 2011. 2012, 214:1, eff. June 13, 2012. 2013, 162:1-3, eff. Jan. 1, 2014. 2015, 165:1, eff. Jan. 1, 2016.