2014 Zone 4 Closure
Beginning at 12:01 am Monday, April 7, 2013, the Zone 4 airboat access within Big Cypress National Preserve will be closed due to low water conditions. More »
Turner River Closure
Turner River is closed due to low water conditions. It is advised that visitors consider paddling Halfway Creek as an alternative. More »
Beginning January 27, through August 28, Burns Lake Campground will be closed to camping. It will still be accessible for day use and backcountry access, however. 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 »
Commercial Use Authorization Application Schedule
Applications to provide visitor services for the Preserve will be accepted only during the months of September, December, March, and June. Applications will be accepted only during the open period. This is intended to expedite processing by Preserve staff as well as allowing for more focused attention for each activity.
Initially, applications will be accepted in sequenced groups according to activity in order to be most efficient in phasing in commercial activities in the Preserve. The first open month will be accepting applications for water-based visitor services, including canoe and kayak rentals, livery, and tours in appropriate management zones. The second open month will be accepting applications for bicycle-based activities, including bicycle rentals, livery, and tours in all appropriate preserve management zones. The third open month will be accepting applications for land based hiking tours, both one day and multi day operations in all appropriate preserve management zones. This may include birding, wildlife viewing, or photography tours on foot. Also during this open month, applications for providing firewood sales in campgrounds will be accepted. The fourth open month will be accepting applications for those revenue producing visitor services that are not accepted in the previous three open months.
This schedule may change at any time, if the number or complexity of applications calls for a different schedule, or if the Preserve is not prepared to manage a particular type of commercial visitor service.
Applications for permits will be accepted in groups according to the activity in order to be most efficient in phasing in commercial services within the Preserve.
The next period for accepting applications for commercial use authorization permits will be from September 1-30, 2012. During this open period, applications will be accepted for providing water based activities only. The non-refundable application fee is $100 per permit. Currently, the cost of a commercial use authorization within Big Cypress National Preserve is $850 per year, and each permit is valid for two years. The National Park Service is prohibited from offering a right of renewal for commercial use authorization permits.
Did You Know?
Many do not expect to see bears in Florida. Actually, we have a healthy population within the state. Big Cypress is one of their ideal habitats in Southwest Florida. If camping in the area, be sure to keep your camp "bear proof."