• The Florida panther's steely gaze - NPS/RALPH ARWOOD

    Big Cypress

    National Preserve Florida

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  • Annual 60-Day ORV Closure for Wheeled Vehicles

    Beginning at 12:01 am Monday, June 2, the annual 60-day recreational ORV closure for all units of the Preserve that allow for wheeled ORV access will begin. The closure will be lifted on Friday, August 1. More »

  • Secondary Trail Closure

    Effective 8/1/2014, following the 60-day recreational ORV closure, only the designated primary trails in the backcountry will be open to recreational ORV use and access. All secondary trails will remain closed on an interim basis for an additional 60-days More »

  • Campground Closure

    All campgrounds but Midway and the loop in the Bear Island Campground are closed through August 29. More »

  • Interstate 75 Mile Marker 63 Closure

    Beginning summer of 2013, the rest area and backcountry access at Mile Marker 63 will be closed due to construction. More »

Tamiami Trail & Monroe Station

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Gateway arch to Collier County traveling from Miami west along the Tamiami Trail, soon after the road was open to the public ca. 1928.

In April 1928, the Tamiami Trail (Tampa to Miami Trail) was completed across the last great wilds of the eastern United States. The project was the first east/west corridor south of Lake Okeechobee on the Florida peninsula. The task of completing the trail from Miami to Fort Myers took more than 11 years at a cost of $7 million dollars and many declared the project an engineering feat comparable to building the Panama Canal.

History of the Tamiami Trail and Brief Review of the Road Construction Movement in Florida published by authority of the Tamiami Trail Commissioners and the County Commissioners of Dade County Florida, Miami 1928

The Tamiami Trail - Muck, Mosquitoes and Motorists: A Photo Essay by Doris Davis

The Tamiami Trail - Beauty and the Beasts a series about the past and present of the Trail from the St. Petersburg Times, 2003

 
Mon-Sta-and-Royal-Palm-Historic-Photos
Monroe Station
 

Soon after the Tamiami Trail was open six service stations were constructed along the most remote stretch of the road through Collier County, much of which is within Big Cypress National Preserve, today. The stations provided a welcome rest to the road-weary traveler, whose ultimate goal was the sun and sand of tropical Florida. Monroe Station is one of only two of the stations that remain today, and is located in the heart of the national preserve.

Click on the links below to learn more about the trail and Monroe Station.

National Register of Historic Places registration form for Monroe Station, 1999

Historic American Buildings Survey on Monroe Station, HABS No. FL-544, 2007

Did You Know?

Researchers gather data from a bear that was removed as a nuisance.

Do not feed wildlife within the preserve. A "fed bear is a dead bear." This bear was fed and eventually became a threat to visitor safety. Nuisance wildlife is sometimes removed, but typically does not survive.