Other Power-Driven Mobility Devices (OPDMD)

Use of OPDMD in California State Parks

In conformance with Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), California State Parks is pleased to improve access for people with mobility disabilities by allowing the use of Other Power-Driven Mobility Devices (OPDMD) in areas where they can be operated safely, without posing substantial risk of serious harm to natural or cultural resources, and without fundamentally altering the nature of our services, programs, or activities.

Mobility devices help people with mobility disabilities enjoy greater freedom and independence. They include devices such as manual or power-driven wheelchairs, manually-powered devices, and other-powered devices.

Wheelchairs are devices designed primarily for use by an individual with a mobility disability for the main purpose of indoor, or of both indoor and outdoor locomotion, and include manual wheelchairs, power wheelchairs, and electric scooters. Manually powered devices include mobility aids such as walkers, crutches, canes, braces, and other similar devices.

Wheelchairs and manually-powered mobility aids are permitted into all areas where members of the public are allowed to go.

What are OPDMD?

OPDMD are any mobility device powered by batteries, fuel, or other engines—whether or not designed primarily for use by individuals with mobility disabilities—that is used by individuals with mobility disabilities for the purpose of locomotion, but that is not a wheelchair.

Who may use OPDMD?

The use of OPDMD in California State Parks is restricted to people with a qualifying disability as defined by Title II of the ADA (28 CFR Part 35 § 35.108). For the purposes of OPDMD use, a qualifying disability is any physical impairment that substantially limits an individual's ability to stand, walk, or perform manual tasks.

All users of OPDMD must provide credible assurance that the mobility device is required for locomotion because of their disability. Credible assurance may be provided by presenting to park staff a valid Access Pass issued by the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass Program, valid proof of assignment of any state’s disabled parking placard, or other valid State-issued proof of disability assigned to the person who will be using the OPDMD.

Individuals who provide only verbal representation, not contradicted by observable fact, that the OPDMD is required because of a mobility disability will not be denied the benefit of an OPDMD. However, persons who falsely represent themselves as disabled to gain the benefits of using of an OPDMD in California state parks will be denied and may be subject to citation and penalties.

Approved Devices

In the California State Park System, the Trails Handbook describes the physical and design characteristics of state park trails, and minimum trail standards. These characteristics and standards, and federal assessment factors, are the basis upon which state park professionals evaluated the suitability of devices. Devices that meet all of the following criteria are approved for use, where approved (see Approved Routes). Where a device does not meet one or more of the following criteria, see OPDMD Deviation Requests.

FactorCriteriaJustification
Size OPDMD shall not be wider than 36” or longer than 48”. Assessment factors (i, ii, iii, v). Larger devices affect the safe flow of pedestrian traffic, impede safe passing of other users and devices, and may encounter issues with tight turning radius. Due to the physical and design characteristics of park routes, larger devices may stray from the established route, which creates a substantial risk of serious harm to the immediate environment and natural or cultural resources.
Weight The overall weight of the OPDMD and user(s) shall not exceed 550 pounds. Assessment factors (i, iii, iv, v). Heavier devices affect the ability of the device to stop quickly, which creates a substantial risk of serious harm to other users. Due to the physical and design characteristics of park routes, heavier devices may affect and degrade the composition and surface of park routes, and thus pose a substantial impact to the immediate environment, natural or cultural resources, and sustainability.
Speed OPDMD shall not be operated at speeds more than 5 miles per hour.1 Assessment factors (i, ii, iii). Considering the physical and design characteristics of park routes, devices operated at speeds more than 5 mph may affect the safe flow of pedestrian traffic and impede the safe passing of other users and devices.
Noise OPDMD shall not produce noise levels more than 70 decibels (dB). Assessment factors (iv, v). Noise pollution exceeding 70 dB may be a safety risk to other users, poses substantial risk of serious harm to natural resources such as wildlife, and may fundamentally alter the nature of the experience for other users.
Emissions OPDMD shall not exceed zero emissions during use. Assessment factor (v). Devices with emissions reduce air quality, affecting other users and harming natural resources. Emissions producing devices create a substantial risk of serious harm to the immediate environment and natural or cultural resources due to the fire dangers of a hot engine, potential spark emissions, and the remote nature of park routes.

 

1OPDMD capable of exceeding 5 mph will not be prohibited from use, but individuals observed exceeding the speed limit may be subject to citation and penalties.

Approved Routes

Devices that meet all of the preceeding criteria are generally allowed in the following locations within California state parks:

  1. Class I designated trails that are designated as accessible or multiple use.
  2. Exterior routes of travel designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas.
  3. Controlled access roads such as fire roads.

As of December 2023, approved roads and trails in each park unit, by District are as follows (more to come): 


Unit Name

Approved road or trail

Del Norte Coast Redwoods SP
  • Hamilton Road
  • Child's Hill Road from Hamilton Road to Crossover Road (MP 0.0 to 6.6)
  • Rock Creek Road from Crossover Road to Child's Road (MP 14.2 to 20.8)
  • Crossover Road
  • Bummer Lake Road from Child's Hill Road (MP 14.2 to 20.8)
  • PJ Spur
  • Cougar Ridge Road from Hamilton Road to Tera Road (MP 0.0 to 1.5)
  • Teran Road from Cougar Ridge Road to Upper First Gulch Road (MP 0.0 to 3.7)
  • Upper First Gulch from Teran Road to Hamilton Road (MP 0.0 to 3.4)
  • Last Chance Road
Grizzly Creek Redwoods SP
  • Cheatham Grove Trail
  • Cheatham Grove Environmental Campsite Trail
Humboldt Redwoods SP
  • Drury Chaney Grove Trail
  • Founders Grove Trail
  • Burlington Nature Trail
  • Rockefeller Loop Trail
  • Stephen's Grove Trail
  • Kent Grove Trail
  • Bull Creek North (Big Tree to Albee Creek Campground)
  • Mattole Road
  • Pole Line Road
  • Squaw Creek Road
  • Grasshopper Road
  • Perimeter Road
  • Look Prairie Road
  • Peavine Ridge Road
  • Kemp Road
  • Greig Road
  • Tanbark Road
  • Fox Camp Road
  • Hansen Ridge Road
Jedediah Smith Redwoods SP
  • Peterson Loop Trail
  • Simpson Reed Loop Trail
  • Stout Grove Loop Trail
  • Walker Road
  • Howland Hill Road
  • Little Bald Hills Road
  • Society Hole Road
  • Peacock Hole Road
Prairie Creek Redwoods SP
  • Big Tree Trail
  • Campfire Center Trail
  • Campfire to Campfire Center Trail
  • Foothill trail (Class I)
  • Prairie Area to Campfire Center Trail
  • Prairie Creek Access Trail #1
  • Prairie Creek Trail (Class I)
  • Redwood Access Trail
  • Revelation Trail
  • Entrance Station to Campground Trail
  • Cork Screw Tree Trail
  • Cal Barrel Road
  • Davison Road
  • Gold Bluffs Beach Road
Richardson Grove SP
  • Nature Trail
  • Nature Trail to Campground (West side of Hwy 101)
Standish-Hickey SRA
  • Grove Nature Trail
  • Page & Gates Road
Sue-Meg SP
  • Campfire Center Trail
  • Meadow Trail
  • Native Trail/Native American Plants Trail
  • Patrick's Point Campfire Center Spur Trail
  • Patrick's Point Access Trail
Trinidad SB
  • Elk Head Trail

Unit Name

Approved road or trail

Año Nuevo SP
  • Año Nuevo Point Trail
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Big Basin Redwoods SP
  • Redwood Loop Trail
  • Rancho Del Oso area - Paved entrance road to the closure beyond the Welcome Center
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
Burleigh H. Murray Ranch PP
  • The fire road access into the park
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Castle Rock SP
  • The Whole Access Trail
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Half Moon Bay SB
  • Coastside Trail
  • Cowell Ranch fire road
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Henry Cowell Redwoods SP
  • Redwood Loop Trail
  • River Trail
  • Meadow Trail
  • Ridge Fire Road
  • Powder Mill Fire Road
  • Ox Fire Road
  • Rincon Fire Road
  • Pipeline Road
  • Day Use Road
  • Picnic Lots Road
  • Residences Road
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Lighthouse Field SB
  • All fire roads
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Natural Bridges SB
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
New Brighton SB
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Pigeon Point Light Station SHP
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Portola Redwoods SP
  • Upper and Lower Escape Road
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Santa Cruz Mission SHP
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Seacliff SB
  • Promenade Trail - adjacent to the beach from Rio Del Mar to the Seacliff Campground
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Sunset SB
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
The Forest of Nisene Marks SP
  • Aptos Creek Fire Road
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots
Wilder Ranch SP
  • Old Cove Landing Trail
  • Ohlone Bluff Trail
  • All paved walkways designed for pedestrian use within developed public use areas
  • All paved roads and parking lots, including within the Wilder Cultural Preserve

Unit Name

Approved road or trail

Armstrong Redwoods SNR
  • The Discovery Trail
  • The Pioneer Trail from the park entrance to the picnic area
  • The Nature Trail from its intersection with the Pioneer Trail near the Icicle Tree to its intersection with the Discovery Trail near the Armstrong Tree
  • Forest Amphitheatre Trail
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates
Fort Ross SHP
  • Trail between the Visitor Center and the Fort Compound
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates
Greenwood SB
  • Elk Beach Trail
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates
Hendy Woods SP
  • Discovery Trail
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates
Jug Handle SNR
  • Blulff Trail
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates
MacKerricher SP
  • Haul Road
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates
Mendocino Headlands SP
  • Big River Haul Road
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates
Russian Gulch SP
  • Fern Canyon Trail
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates
Salt Point SP
  • Bluff Trail between Stump Beach and Gerstle Cove
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates
Sonoma Coast SP
  • Willow Creek Campground Road
  • Pomo Canyon Campground Road
  • Kortum Trail between Carlevaro Way and Wright's Beach
  • Vista Trail
  • Bodega Head Nature Trail
  • Bodega Dunes Boardwalk
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates
Van Damme SP
  • Fern Canyon Trail
  • All publicly accessible unpaved fire roads without gates

 

For assistance with determining the names and locations of approved park routes in a park unit, contact the District Office responsible for the park unit or the Roads and Trails Program. To operate a device on a route that is not covered in the preceeding approved routes, see OPDMD Deviation Requests.

OPDMD Deviation Requests

People with mobility disabilities who wish to utilize an OPDMD that does not meet one or more of the preceeding criteria, or on a park route that has not been approved, may submit a deviation request for accommodation. Requests are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. All requests must include a description of the requested device and the desired routes where the device will be operated. To submit a request, please use the OPDMD Deviation Request form. Determinations will be made within 45 days upon receipt of a request.