Oversand Vehicle Permit

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OSV Permits must be purchased online, at https://thetrustees.org/program/mv-osv-permits/

Permits must be picked up in person; permits cannot be mailed.

All permits purchased online will be available for pick-up at the Mytoi Gatehouse and the Norton Point Gatehouse, during open hours. You may also pick up your permit at the Vineyard Haven office, 860 State Road in Vineyard Haven, Monday – Thursday, 9AM – 2PM, year-round.

When picking up your stickers, please be sure to bring your e-mail confirmation and oversand vehicle with you. The stickers will be affixed to your vehicle at that time. Vehicles not bearing both stickers (front and back bumper on the same vehicle) are invalid. Replacements for lost and misplaced stickers will not be issued. If you decide to change vehicles (i.e. you’ve sold the vehicle, the vehicle is in the shop, etc.) please remember to remove both stickers and bring them with you to request a re-issue. Even if the permits are damaged or torn up into small pieces, that’s okay – we just need physical evidence that they are no longer in use!

Please note that there are two different Over-Sand Vehicle permits. Both are valid from April 1 through the following March 31.  Therefore, the later in the year you purchase OSV permits, the fewer months’ use you will get out of them.

Norton Point Beach Annual Permit: 

$90 for vehicles registered in Dukes County, or

$140 for vehicles not registered in Dukes County.

Cape Poge and Wasque Reservations on Chappaquiddick Annual Permit:

$190 for vehicles, no matter where the vehicle is registered. 

Annual OSV permits include one year’s free Family-level membership in The Trustees (a $70 value).

Please make sure you are applying for the correct permit(s). Each permit is valid only for the property it specifies!

If you purchase both permits at the same time -- called a combination purchase -- there is a $10 discount on the combined cost of the permits. The combination of Norton Point and Cape Poge/Wasque Annual Permits:

$270 for vehicles registered in Dukes County, or

$320 for vehicles not registered in Dukes County.

There are currently no daily, weekly, or monthly passes available.

Applicant must be the owner of the vehicle (no rentals allowed) and be present in car with following equipment:

· valid vehicle registration
· shovel
· tow rope (15 feet long ½ inch poly propylene 5/8 inch nylon) -- local hardware stores carry them
· low-pressure tire gauge (one which shows 12 and 15 pounds per square inch)
· jack support board (we recommend 12 x 12 x ¾ plywood)
· full size spare tire

To take advantage of the discount for vehicles registered in Dukes County, the purchaser must show the vehicle registration as proof.

It is very important to lower your vehicle’s tire pressure to no more than 12 to 15 pounds per square inch, to avoid getting stuck in the sand. There are free re-inflation air hoses available at the Mytoi garden entrance and at the South Beach entrance to Norton Point Beach.

Please be forewarned that vehicle access to any beach area may certainly be restricted at any time during the year, due to erosion, nesting shorebirds, the presence of rare or endangered species, severe weather events, flooded trails, or for other unforeseen reasons. In other words, purchasing an OSV permit is no guarantee of access --- we may without notice close vehicle trails, and we cannot predict when these closings may occur.  Do not expect a refund if the beach trails are closed when you want to use them.  Purchasing a permit is no guarantee of access.

FAQs re OSV permits

Can I Buy a Permit for an All-Wheel Drive vehicle?

We can sell you the permit. What is the true indicator of a vehicle's success on the beach lies in its ground clearance which they can look up online.  For adequate beach travel the OSV should have at least 6.5 inches of ground clearance. Some people have success with their All-Wheel Drive vehicles, and some people don’t.  We would refund the person the price of the OSV permit on same day that they bought it, if they found that the vehicle did not handle well. Some versions of All-Wheel Drives don’t engage until the tire has already started slipping and digging into the sand, which is of course too late.

I now have a different vehicle from the one that I bought the permit for.  Can I get new stickers for the new vehicle? 

Yes.  If you return to us the permits you were first issued, we will take the information on your new vehicle, and issue you replacement permits at no cost. 

For more information please call the Trustees of Reservations (508-627-7689)

 

Vehicular Access Regulations

Permit

  1. Vehicles must be in four-wheel drive and must display a current Norton Point Beach permit on the front and rearbumpers.  Permits are not transferable.
  2. Vehicles must remain on the designated trails.
  3. Vehicles are prohibited from driving along the bay-side tidal flats.
  4. Tires shall be maintained at a maximum of 15 pounds per square inch to protect the trail and to reduce strain on your engine.
  5. Either adverse weather conditions or the presence of nesting shorebirds may close part or all of the beach to vehicular access.  
  6. Driving or parking is prohibited in the following areas:
    1. On vegetation;
    2. Within 15 feet of sand fencing;
    3. Within 15 feet of the toe of a dune.
  7. Speed limit of 15 miles per hour.
  8. In places the designated trails are wide enough for only one vehicle; Use designated pull off areas to allow oncoming traffic to pass.
  9. Parking on designated trails or in pull off areas is prohibited.
  10. All vehicles must carry the following:
    1. These regulations;
    2. Spare tire;
    3. A rope, strap, chain or cable of sufficient strength and length to tow your vehicle;
    4. Jack and a board to go under the jack (a jack in  the sand is use-less;
    5. Heavy duty shovel;
    6. Tire pressure gauge registering 10 psi or less.
  11. Drivers must fill in the ruts and or holes they dig to remove their vehicle from loose sand.
  12. The Beach Manager and/or County Commissioners may enact and post additional regulations to protect public health and safety or to protect the integrity of the beach.

SUMMARY OF GENERAL REGULATIONS

THE FOLLOWING ACTIVITIES ARE PROHIBITED:

  1. Climbing dunes – This activity damages the dunes and/or the vegetation holding the dunes in place.
  2. Cutting, removing or walking on any vegetation – This vegetation is what holds the beach in place, so it must be protected.
  3. Littering – At the least, remove all the materials you bring to the beach.  Please consider removing other litter as well.
  4. Carrying and consumption of alcoholic beverages.
  5. Overnight camping or sleeping.
  6. Open fires.
  7. Removing, defacing or otherwise damaging signs, barriers or other property.
  8. Behavior that endangers the public, causes a nuisance, or harasses wildlife.
  9. Dog and Pet Restrictions:
    1. 1 January – 31 March – No Restrictions;
    2. 1 April – 14 May – Dogs and pets are prohibited within 100 yards of posted nesting habitat by federal and state regulation;
    3. 15 May – 30 August - Dogs and pets are prohibited within 100 yards of posted nesting habitat by federal and state regulation AND Dogs and pets are prohibited on all beaches between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.;
    4. 1 September – 15 September - Dogs and pets are prohibited on all beaches between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.;
    5. 16 September – 31 December – No Restrictions; and
    6. Dog and pet excrement must be picked up and disposed of properly.
    7. There is a $50 fine for violation of Section 4 (Mass. General Law Section 161 Acts 1971).

Approved By County Manager April 27, 2005

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