Return to Texas River Guide

Motor Vehicles Are Prohibited In Texas Navigable Riverbeds STARTING JANUARY 1, 2004

• The Canadian River and Prairie Dog Town Fork of the Red River are exempted by statute.

• A motor vehicle is defined as “any wheeled or tracked vehicle, machine, tractor, trailer, or semitrailer propelled or drawn by mechanical power and used to transport a person or thing.”

• A navigable river or stream is one that “retains an average width of 30 or more feet from the mouth or confluence up.”

• The public retains constitutional right to travel navigable waterways, as long as a motor vehicle is not used.

• It is illegal to obstruct, restrict, or interfere with lawful public recreational use of a navigable river or stream.

• Crossing private property without permission to access a river or stream is illegal.

• Local River Access Plans may allow motor vehicles in specified river areas.

• Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is seeking grant proposals and sites for off-road vehicle parks.