An Unfortunate Day at the Crown V Ranch
Posted in the Davisburg Forum
#1 Aug 8, 2010
The following is a letter that I sent to the DNR after an unfortunate experience in the Highland Recreation Area (specifically the Crown V Ranch) on August 8, 2010. I hope that it helps to avoid a similar recurrence.
Hello, I'm writing to tell you about a very sad experience I had today - my first visit to the park. After spending several hours at the beach, my friend and I headed toward the park entrance, hoping to explore a little more of the park before leaving. We pulled off onto the road toward the horse riding stables, as indicated by the signage. Upon entering, there was a dirt road that led around the ranch. So, we decided to see what was around. After a short while, the road gets thinner and less manicured, so we turned back to return to the entrance. Upon returning, a man (TJ Sullivan) came briskly toward our automobile with another man and his dogs, demanding that we turn off the vehicle and explain why we were there. At this point, my friend and I were already quite startled because he was obviously very angry. We explained that we were merely trying to explore the park. There was no signage indicating that this area was private or off limits to park guests. In fact, nearby there is a road with a sign that states "Employees Only", so it only seemed natural that the road we took into the ranch would also be similarly marked if it was off limits. In trying to explain this, TJ cut us off again and again, calling us "liars", claiming that it was obvious we were lying because of our nervous breathing, and threatening us with police action. We were nothing but explanatory and apologetic, and his response was to berate us and make us feel threatened. It was really appalling behavior that turned a really nice day at the beautiful park into a very upsetting experience. When he let up on his interrogation, and told us to "Get out of here" and "Don't ever come back, or I'll call the police", we left immediately to the entrance and spoke with a park employee at the gate. The employee explained that TJ leases the land from the park service, and made it clear that TJ is well known for his hostile behavior. I understand that the park service has a beneficial business relationship with him, and I'm not sure what I hope to accomplish by writing this letter, but I hope the park reconsiders this relationship. I can only imagine that his behavior today reflects how he runs his business. At the very least, I think it's in the interest of the park to mark his land as private property. I hope that no one else will have this experience of the Highland Recreation Area. Thanks for listening.
#2 Oct 7, 2010
I think your story is at best untrue. At worst it is an attempt to slander and creat harm. I know the road and there is a gate. Not only that but had you been looking for an enjoyable horse back riding experience T.J. would have been more than accommodating. Your story sounds suspect. What is your motive
#3 Jun 16, 2011
If the road is getting narrower wouldnt you think to turn around since its obviously not for vehicles? itss a Riding Stable and those are the riding trails. i have been to Crown V Ranch dozens of times and TJ has been nothing but nice and the horses are great but if you see a parking lot and a small trail at a riding stable wouldnt you think that the trails not for vehicles. oh and the dogs are his and TJ is not the kind of guy to come up angrily unless you really did something.
#4 Jun 16, 2011
also the DNR doesnt know nothing about the way it is ran and if they left him alone he wouldnt have to be that way. also i was there and he was calm when he walked off so you would have had to really get him mad. also come on have a little common sense your at a riding stable and you see narrow trails perfect for horses and drive dowwn them?! the horses are right there too what cant you see?
#5 Apr 25, 2013
I've also been here a handful of times and all of my experiences were different but the one thing that stayed the same was the attitude there. Everyone is very friendly including tj. I've been there with a crowd of people and they were fast an considerate. I've also been there with few people and the people were nothing but generous and helpful. It seems to me that if he was hostile at all it's because he was pissed that you were driving on a HORSE TRAIL. He most likely just worried for the horses and people. Maybe you should use some common sense.
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