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

    Big Cypress

    National Preserve Florida

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  • 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 »

2012 60-Day Recreational ORV Closure

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Date: May 22, 2012
Contact: Bob DeGross, 239-695-1107

Beginning at 12:01 a.m. Monday, June 4 the annual 60-day recreational ORV closure for all units of Big Cypress National Preserve that allow for wheeled ORV access will begin. The closure will be lifted on Friday, August 3 when recreational access will resume.

The Recreational Off-Road Vehicle Management Plan calls for a 60-day seasonal closure to allow a period free from resource pressures related to ORV use. The ORV closure within Big Cypress National Preserve was first instituted in 2002.

Landowners, and their guests, that hold special use permits to access private properties within the Preserve will retain continued access to property along approved routes.

The recreational closure for airboat use within Zone 4 of the Stairsteps Unit was implemented from 3/23 through 5/22. However, due to continued low water levels recreational access into the Zone will not resume until further notice.

Zone 4 of the Stairsteps Unit allows for access via airboats only. The Bear Island, Turner River and Corn Dance Units, and Zones 2 and 3 of the Stairsteps Unit provide for access by specified, wheeled ORVs. All management units within the Preserve allow for ORV travel along designated trails only.

For information on other closures click here.

Did You Know?

Hunters entering the Preserve on a swamp buggy. Photo courtesy of Jack Moller.

Big Cypress National Preserve was one of the first national preserves within the National Park System. As a preserve, Big Cypress manages for a broader range of recreational activities, including hunting and off-road vehicle access.