Over Sand Vehicle (OSV) Use
Maryland District OSV Zone: Open to the state line as of 11/29/13.
The Over-Sand Vehicle (OSV) zone at Assateague Island National Seashore contains miles of unspoiled beaches managed by the National Park Service to accommodate OSV enthusiasts and other beach goers.
OSV permits are issued for a year from the month of purchase. The permit fee ranges from $70 to $150, depending upon the type of access desired. All vehicles using the OSV zone must display a valid OSV Permit. Upon signing the registration for the OSV permit, operators accept responsibility for knowing and following all OSV regulations. Please see the OSV brochure for complete regulations.
OSV operators in designated zone must carry the following equipment:
OSV permits are issued for individual vehicles in the name of the registered owner. Sale or transfer of the vehicle voids the permit. A replacement permit may be issued for the new vehicle only if enough of the original permit, to include serial numbers and month sticker, is returned for exchange. Permits destroyed in a vehicle accident may be replaced only if an official accident report is brought in for documentation. A receipt for purchase is not sufficient for permit replacement. Lost permits are not refundable or replaceable!
OSV permits must be permanently affixed to the lower corner of the windshield on the driver's side, within seven inches (7") of the edge of the windshield. The expiration month sticker must be affixed before adhering to windshield.
In Virginia, permits may be obtained at the Toms Cove Visitor Center, the OSV Closure Booth (summer only) and the Herbert H. Bateman Education Center. In Maryland, permits may be purchased at the Sinepuxent Ranger Station. Permits may also be purchased by mail. Call 410-641-3030 or download an application and return it to the Park with a check made payable to: Department of the Interior-NPS. Please allow up to three weeks for receipt of the permit.
At Assateague Island National Seashore we strive to provide you with a safe and enjoyable over-sand vehicle (OSV) experience. Regulations and equipment requirements are necessary for your safety and the safety of other visitors and National Park Service staff. Changing beach conditions, vehicle breakdowns, and human judgement errors may occasionally result in over-sand vehicles becoming stuck and needing assistance. In these instances, National Park Service staff can: Assist with removing sand from around the tires. Deflate tires. Use traction devices such as boards Make a phone call on your behalf to friends/family. Provide information regarding local towing services. National Park Service staff cannot: Winch or pull the vehicles out. Recommend a towing company. Please be prepared when using the OSV zones on Assateague Island. Carry the required safety equipment; adequate food, water and clothing; and know the park rules and regulations.
Did You Know?
When you see beach foam think of egg whites! Beach foam is created when the tumultuous action of the surf forces air into the ocean water. It is similar to whipping egg whites into froth but instead of egg whites the ocean contains organic compounds that reduce the surface tension of the bubbles.