The following rules are codified as follows…
- Title 36. Parks, Forests, and Public Property
- Chapter I. NATIONAL PARK SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
- Part 7. SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM
§ 7.75 Padre Island National Seashore.
(a) Off-road motor vehicle and motorcycle operation.
(1) The following regulations pertain to the operation of motor vehicles and motorcycles off established roads and parking areas. The operation of such vehicles and motorcycles is subject also to the applicable provisions of part 4 of this chapter and paragraphs (e) and (g) of this section.
(i) No person may operate a motor vehicle or motorcycle without a valid operator’s license or learner’s permit in his possession; an operator who has a learner’s permit must be accompanied by an adult who has a valid operator’s license; a driver’s license or learner’s permit must be displayed upon the request of any authorized person.
(ii) In addition to the requirements of § 4.10 of this chapter, every motor vehicle and motorcycle must have an operable horn, windshield wiper or wipers (except motorcycles), brake light or lights, and rearview mirror.
(iii) Motor vehicles and motorcycles must have valid license plates.
(iv) Every motor vehicle and motorcycle must have a valid State vehicle inspection certificate when such certificate is required for highway use in the State in which the vehicle is licensed.
(v) When two motor vehicles or motorcycles meet on the beach, the operator of the vehicle in southbound traffic shall yield the right-of-way, where necessary, by turning out of the track to the right.
(2) Off-road motor vehicle and motorcycle use areas and routes. The following routes and areas are open to such vehicles:
(i) Travel is permitted on all of the beach adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico, except for the approximately 4 1/2 miles of beach between the North and South Beach Access Roads.
(ii) The route west of Big Shell Beach, locally known as the Back Road. This route begins on the beach adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico approximately three miles south of Yarborough Pass and returns to the beach approximately 15 miles south of Yarborough Pass.
(iii) The route beginning on the beach adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico approximately 11 miles south of Yarborough Pass and ending with its intersection with the Back Road approximately one mile west of the beach. This route is locally known as the Dunn Ranch Road.
(iv) Travel is permitted in an area within 200 feet of the north bank of the Mansfield Channel, beginning on the beach adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico and ending approximately 3/4 mile west of the beach.
(1) Hunting is prohibited, except that during the open season prescribed by State and Federal agencies, the hunting of waterfowl is allowed upon the waters of Laguna Madre wherever a floating vessel of any type is capable of being operated, at whatever tide level may exist. Provided, however, that the waters surrounding North and South Bird Islands and other designated rookery islands are closed to all hunting as posted. Hunting, where authorized, is allowed in accordance with all applicable Federal, State and local laws for the protection of wildlife.
(2) The erecting of a structure for use as a hunting blind is prohibited except that a temporary blind may be used when removed at the end of each hunting day.
(e) Prohibited vehicle operations. The following operations are prohibited on and off established roads and parking areas.
(1) The use of ground effect or aircushion vehicles is prohibited.
(2) The use of vehicles propelled by the wind, commonly known as sail cars, is prohibited.
(3) Towing of persons behind vehicles on a sled, box, skis, surfboard, parachute, or in any other way is prohibited.
(4) Riding on fenders, tailgate, roof, or any other position outside of the vehicle is prohibited.
(g) Speed. Except where different speed limits are indicated by posted signs or markers, speed of automobiles and other vehicles shall not exceed 25 miles per hour where driving is permitted on the beach.
(h) Mineral exploration and extraction –
(1) Scope. The regulations in this paragraph are made, prescribed, and published pursuant to the Act of September 28, 1962, 76 Stat. 651, 16 U.S.C. 459d-3 (1964), to provide for the occupation and use of so much of the surface of the land or waters within the Padre Island National Seashore – for all purposes reasonably incident to the mining and removal of oil and gas minerals and of other minerals which can be removed by similar means – in a manner that will be consistent with development of recreational facilities by the Secretary of the Interior, with surface use of the lands and waters in the Seashore by the public for recreational purposes and with preservation of the area’s natural features and values. The provisions of these regulations shall govern also any right of occupation or use of the surface within the boundaries of the Seashore, granted by the Secretary subsequent to April 11, 1961, for the exploration, development, production, storing, processing or transporting of oil and gas minerals that are removed from outside the boundaries of the Seashore. They shall not apply to such rights of occupation or use existing on April 11, 1961, which are reasonably necessary.
(2) Operator. As used in this paragraph, an operator shall mean anyone who in accordance with the provisions of the aforesaid Act of September 28, 1962, possesses the right (whether as owner of a mineral interest, lessee, holder of operating rights, or otherwise), to mine or remove minerals from lands within the Padre Island National Seashore or the right to occupy or use the surface of Seashore lands for the exploration, development, production, storing, processing or transporting of oil and gas minerals that are removed from outside the boundaries of the Seashore.
(3) Exercise of non-Federal Oil and Gas Rights. Before entering the National Seashore for the purpose of conducting any operations pursuant to a mineral interest authorized under the Act providing for establishment of the Seashore, the operator shall comply with the requirements of part 9, subpart B of this chapter.
(4) All activities relating to the exercise of mineral interests which take place within the boundaries of the park shall be in accordance with an approved Plan of Operations.
(5) Applicability of State laws. All operators, as defined in subparagraph (2) of this paragraph shall abide by all rules and regulations as may be prescribed by the Texas Railroad Commission or other authority of the State of Texas.