What Does a Purple Fence Post Mean? – A Definative Guide 2021

For tourists and hunters, knowledge of outdoor safety laws and regulations can be the difference between a beautiful day on the street, life and death, or a long prison sentence. Nevertheless, some American states have laws and necessary know-how that even the most avid tourist may not know about, and this can create many problems for them.

what does a purple fence post mean

For example, in many remote areas of America, in states such as Texas, Maine and Arizona, tourists may encounter a curious sight: fence posts painted purple. They look whimsical, unique and even stylish. This feature is not a tourist’s alarm, but it definitely deserves attention.

Mysterious Purple Pillars

In late summer – at the very beginning of the hunting season – you can see a curious thing if you stroll through vast, seemingly unexplored areas of North America. People here paint the fence posts and trunks purple. To the uninformed hiker or hunter, this may seem like an odd choice for decorating their home, as the purple color contrasts strongly with the yellow-brown color of burnt grass and the dark green color of evergreen trees. But this painting is not an aesthetic choice.

So what’s the point? One of the local correspondents, Rudy Fernandez, recently explained this feature. Surprisingly, knowing what this means can actually save lives.

purple fence post meaning

“I was out here recently with a couple of my friends, and they asked me why the poles were painted purple. They thought the locals just liked this color. They were very surprised when I told them the truth, ”said Rudy.

The fact is that over the years, local property owners with huge tracts of land have not wanted lost tourists and hunters passing through the area to accidentally wander into their territory, which often borders on colossal tracts of untouched land.

Fences around the outside of their lands can alert hikers and hunters to stay away from here. But the hedges break down, leaving withered pillars that look abandoned. However, local residents have found a solution to this problem.

An interesting solution to the problem of property protection

There are no prohibition signs here. The fact is that the climate in Texas is very dry and hot. All signs fade very quickly. To prevent property owners from constantly replacing sun-burned road signs or constantly repairing dilapidated fences, Texas passed a law in 1997 that offered a permanent, more sustainable solution.

do not trespass sign

The law was passed after it was shown to be effective in the state of Arkansas in 1987. It was later adopted in nine other states: Illinois, Missouri, North Carolina, Maine, Florida, Idaho, Montana, Arizona, and Kansas.

In 1997, the Texas state government agreed that if you paint the fence posts in a certain color, then this can be interpreted as well as a “No entry” sign. Officials agreed to a representative color – purple – for a specific reason.

Why purple?

Purple is a specific color that even color blind people can see. For years, the law has been that you must paint the tops of fence posts, near gates, and along all your lands. But in its original form, the law had a reservation.

In Texas, Rudy said, you can’t just slap purple on a fence post and be done. In the early years of the law, this paint had to be accompanied by a prohibiting sign of violation of borders, which in some way contradicted the purpose of the paint itself.

no hunting purple paint

About ten years after the law was passed, hunters, law enforcement officers and people who were going to visit the country knew what purple meant. They knew it was just a sign of a border violation. So the law has changed.

Under the revised law, border trespass signs were no longer needed. In Texas, purple paint on a pole had the same legal effect as a prohibition sign. But this led to some problems.

Property Protection in Texas

Traveling hunters and tourists visiting Texas, or people like Rudy’s friends who were fascinated by the purple paint on the poles had no idea what purple meant without prohibition signs.

purple paint post the paint

And let’s face it: for someone unfamiliar with the law, a purple-painted tree trunk hardly says “No Entry”, as a fence with a “No Unauthorized Entry” sign can do. But in any case, going behind the pillars painted in purple paint is very life-threatening. The point is that this is private property. Whether there is a prohibitory sign or not, this does not play a role in the protection of property by its owner. In Texas, property can be defended with lethal weapons.

Therefore, Rudy warned his friends: “If you see purple paint, it indicates the boundaries of the property. You don’t need to go here or hunt here. Follow this rule and it will keep you alive and out of trouble in Texas.