Laws and Regulations

All areas of the refuge are closed to public entry unless otherwise explicitly posted as a nature trail, wildlife observation area, or parking lot. Some areas are closed seasonally and are posted as such.

Visitors to national wildlife refuges must comply with all applicable local, state, federal regulations and signs.

Hours – San Joaquin River NWR is open daily from ½-hour before sunrise to ½-hour after sunset.

Fees – There are no fees to use the nature trail or wildlife observation area.

Permits – There are no permits required to use the nature trail or wildlife observation area.

State / Federal permits and/or licenses are required for activities that are traditionally highly regulated (such as hunting) or otherwise prohibited. Common examples include:

A refuge specific Special Use Permit (SUP) is required to enter closed areas or conduct activities that are otherwise prohibited. For more information or to request a permit, contact the refuge manager for the area where the proposed activity will occur at the San Luis NWR Complex: 209-826-3508.

Visitors must comply with all posted rules and regulations, in addition to what is listed below:

  • No trespassing in posted closed areas. Do not walk or drive beyond “Area Closed” signs.
  • No entry behind closed gates or fences
  • No night use. The refuge is open from ½-hour before sunrise to ½-hour after sunset.
  • No travel off of designated public use roads or trails
  • No parking outside of designated parking lots
  • No pets off leash when outside of vehicles
  • No dog field trials or dog training
  • No fishing
  • No bicycling
  • No horseback riding
  • No camping
  • No fires or cooking grills
  • No weapons or discharge of firearms
  • No take, disturbance or collection of wildlife or plants
  • No search for or removal of objects of antiquity or other valued objects
  • No prospecting or mining
  • No feeding wildlife
  • No spotlighting
  • No interference with persons engaged in authorized activities
  • No marijuana