FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: Will I ever lose my camping reservations?
A: No, a reservation holder will never lose their reservation, no matter when they check in. Both Modesto and Woodward Reservoirs just ask that the reservation holder checks in at the entrance station when they arrive. The reservations are never cancelled, even if the reservation holder does not show up!
Q: Can I pick up leftover cans and bottles at campsites/in parks?
A: No, it is against County ordinance to take trash or recyclables from County Parks. The reason is to reduce existing trash receptacles from being dumped, creating an unsanitary environment in the park.
Q: Is there a limit to how many tents I can have at one site?
A: There is no limit on how many tents are at a camping site as long as the campers do not encroach on the adjacent campsite. Only 8 people and 2 vehicles are allowed per campsite.
Q: What are the restrictions related to campfires?
A: The following restrictions apply to campfires:
Campfires CANNOT be left unattended and must be extinguished upon leaving the campsite.
Campfires MUST be contained or in the fire rings provided.
Keep all flammable materials away from the fire area to prevent spread.
Gather firewood only in designated areas. Woodcutting is prohibited.
Campfire size only – no large fires.
All fires, including their size and location, are subject to the control of Parks staff and Cal Fire.
No Christmas trees, pallets, or any nail-laden wood (i.e. fencing) can be used as firewood.
Q: Do I need registration for my OHVs?
A: YES! All vehicle units must have an OHV registration in the form of a Red or Green sticker, or an on-road registration to be driven on public land. Red/Green stickers have different regulations and can be purchased from the DMV. Please check with California’s DMV for the most current sticker cost and regulations. See OHV FAQs for more info.
Q: I found an injured animal – can you come get it?
A: Parks and Recreation does not provide any kind of injured/deceased wildlife pickup service. You can contact the Stanislaus Wildlife Care Center @ (209) 883-9414. They are open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and they are located on 1220 Geer Road in Hughson.
Q: Is hunting allowed anywhere else in Stanislaus County besides Frank Raines?
A: No. Hunting in Stanislaus County is limited to deer, wild pig, and rabbit in the Minniear Day Use Area in Del Puerto Canyon. Waterfowl hunting is limited to Modesto and Woodward Reservoirs when in season. All hunting activities require appropriate permits and registration with the County.
Q: Any questions regarding Crows Landing Airfield:
A: Please contact Brad Diemer with General Services Agency at (209) 525-6503.
Q: Is proof of vaccinations required for dogs at the Reservoirs?
A: No, but Modesto Reservoir does not allow pets (including horses) at any time.Woodward Reservoir does allow dogs, and there is a fee of $3 per day, per dog.
Q: Are there any first-come, first-serve RV sites at Frank Raines?
A: Yes. Sites 20 through 24 are held as non-reservable.
Q: Can I rent the Salida Ballpark?
A: The Salida Ballpark is facilitated by the Salida School District. Their current contact is Lucy @ (209) 543-3108. The only thing Parks maintains in relation to the ballpark is the restroom and concession stand which is on County Park property. Salida Little League has an exclusive use contract for the concession stand, and they pay the power bill.
Q: I want a band/music group to play at a party I’m throwing at one of the County Parks. Is anything required?
A: Any live music requires a special permit per Stanislaus County ordinance. Please reach out to our office at (209)525-6750 to inquire about applying for a permit to have live music as a County Park. 10.46.060 Specific noise source standards. (qcode.us)
Q: Where is my Annual Pass accepted?
A: Annual passes are valid at all regional parks for day use only.
Q: Does my Lifetime All Access Pass work at regional parks?
A: Unfortunately no. The Lifetime All Access Pass is generally only valid for national parks, though there are some exceptions. It does not, however, provide entry into our regional parks.
Q: When will there be the next fish plant?
A: Fish plants are scheduled and conducted by California Fish & Wildlife. A full schedule of upcoming plants can be found here: https://nrm.dfg.ca.gov/FishPlants/.
Q: Are spark arrestors and mufflers required for my OHV?
A: YES, as regulated by the California Vehicle Code.
Q: What safety equipment is required when operating an OHV?
A: Helmets are required by state law. Please refer to the OHV Laws and Regulations resource listed in our OHV FAQs. Safety flags are not required, but highly recommended.
Q: Is there an additional fee for horse trailers?
A: No, but there is a $3 per day, per horse fee.
Q: Do I need a permit to scout Minniear Day Use Area?
A: No, you do not. The Minniear Day Use Area is open for hiking, horseback riding, bird watching, and scouting. A permit is required if you are wanting to hunt in the area.
Q: Is there a water source in Del Puerto Canyon/the Minniear Day Use Area?
A: Yes, there is a seasonal creek.
Q: Where can I buy annual passes?
A: You can buy annual passes at the Modesto Reservoir or Woodward Reservoir entrance station any day of the week. Annual passes are available for purchase at the La Grange OHV Park entrance station on Saturdays and Sundays only.
Q: Can I bike in off-road areas?
A: No bicycles, walking, hiking, camping, picnicking, fires, or similar recreation is permitted in any Off-Road area.
Q: How many pigs are taken from Minniear Day Use Area per year?
A: We do not maintain that information, but annual take counts can be found on California Fish & Wildlife’s website: https://wildlife.ca.gov/.
Q: Do I need a permit to throw a birthday party at a County park?
A: County parks are for the public and a permit is not required to gather there. However, an exclusive use permit can be purchased for $100 per day ($90 rental fee + $10 reservation fee) to RESERVE an area exclusively for your party. If you do not have an exclusive use permit, there is no way to guarantee that park/picnic shelter will not be occupied by another party.
Q: What is the body-to-water contact restriction at Woodward Reservoir?
A: This is an annual restriction mandated by the South San Joaquin Irrigation District in order to comply with state regulations to preserve the quality of drinking water. The body-to-water contact restriction at Woodward Reservoir goes into effect after Labor Day weekend and is traditionally lifted in mid-April. Boats launched from the ramp are still allowed as long as you do not need to touch the water to get in your vessel. This restriction means no swimming, no wading, no jet skiing, no kayaking, or any other activities that include body to water contact. Dogs are also NOT permitted in the water at this time.
Q: Can I use the open area at Woodward Reservoir to hold dog training?
A: Dog training at Woodward Reservoir is for Field Trial Dog training exclusively. An annual pass must be purchased and either a private dog training permit if they are training their own dog only, or a commercial dog training permit if they are training other people’s dogs for field trials (hunting retrieval) is required. Pet dogs must be on a leash at all times.
Q: Can I fly a drone at a County park?
A: Yes, drone use is not restricted at Stanislaus County parks. However, park staff have the authority to ask a drone operator to cease drone flight if they believe them to be posing threats to the safety and privacy of park visitors, staff, property, or wildlife. We also ask that you consider the following safety tips when operating a drone in a public space.
Safety tips when operating drones in public parks
Many public parks are meant to be enjoyed by kids and adults who simply want to relax or play sports. As a drone pilot, it is your responsibility not to make these people feel that you are intruding in their activities or are posing any safety threat.
To make sure that your drone flight operations don’t ruin the fun of the other people in the park, here are a few tips:
1. Check the airspace classification
You may not find any rules in a public park that prohibits drone flight, but there are public parks that fall within controlled airspace. A quick check-in a mobile app like B4UFLY can let you know if you need to file a LAANC authorization request before you can fly your drones.
2. Ask for permission before taking photos
Although there’s no law prohibiting you from taking photos of people in public places, it is merely courtesy to ask for their permission anyway – especially if you’re around kids. This is a good gesture, even if you’re not actually taking photos of the people around you. They don’t know exactly where your camera is pointed at, and people are naturally suspicious of a stranger holding a camera, especially one that can fly around.
3. Make the people around you feel comfortable
When you fly a drone in a public place, you will undoubtedly have people looking your way and getting curious about what you’re doing. Strike a conversation with them and show them the photos you’ve taken. This way, you can make them see that you’re not doing anything malicious or illegal. Who knows? You might even convince a few people to buy their first drones.
4. Do not fly directly over other people
Both recreational and commercial drone flight rules prohibit drone flight directly over people who are not directly participating in the operations. Doing so poses a huge safety threat to the people should your drone crash. In the same vein, it’s best to keep a healthy distance away from people since a drone will crash along a trajectory, which is hard to predict. We also recommend keeping away from walking paths, playgrounds, or any area where dogs are allowed to move around without a leash.
5. Make sure to have a Part 107 license if you’re flying commercially
If you’re planning to do any commercial drone photography in a public park, make sure that you have earned your Part 107 license and that you have the license on hand. Park staff have the authority to ask you to present your drone license or to cease your operations if they feel that you are endangering other people.