A lot of us have been getting into the great outdoors a little more since the pandemic and social distancing started, but if you come across purple paint on a tree or a fence you've got to get out immediately. Here's why. 

Idaho has the "Purple Paint Law. What does that mean?

The Purple Paint Law originated in Arkansas back in 1987 and means you cannot trespass and/or hunt on the property. Apparently the purple paint law come into effect because "no trespassing" signs were getting destroyed by the elements.

If you would like to incorporate the purple paint law on your property, keep a few things in mind.


  • Purple paint markings must be vertical, at least 8 inches long, at least 1 inch wide
  • The bottom of the mark should be between 3-5 feet above the ground
  • Markings can be no more than 100 feet apart in timberland
  • Markings can be no more than 1,000 feet apart on open land, [and] they must be in a place visible by those approaching the property

I think you also risk a lot of people not knowing about or not understanding the purple paint law, so you may still have to kick people off for trespassing.

Other states that have adopted this law according to tiphero.com

-North Carolina
According to Inlandforest.com, the penalties for trespassing are pretty stiff.
  • First offense: $300 fine if they leave when asked. If not, the charge could carry 6 months jail time and up to $1,000 in fines.
  • Second offense within five years: misdemeanor, up to six months jail time and between $1,500 and $3,000 in fines.
  • Third offense within 10 years: possible felony, up to 10 years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines.
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