• 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 »

2014 Annual ORV Closure

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Date: May 23, 2014
Contact: Bob DeGross, 239-695-1107

Beginning at 12:01 a.m. Monday, June 2, the regularly scheduled 60-day ORV closure for management units within the Preserve that allow for wheeled ORV access  will be implemented. This closure will be lifted on Friday, August 1.

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.

Zone 4 of the Stairsteps Unit of the Preserve 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.

Zone 4 airboat access has been closed as of April 7, 2014. Pending water levels, this unit may re-open to access by airboats on Friday, June 6, 2014.  At this time water levels in the area would not warrant re-opening the unit to airboat access. More details related to this closure will be provided as the proposed opening date approaches.

For information on other closures within the national preserve click here.

Did You Know?

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Big Cypress National Preserve is big. REALLY BIG. With a total land area of 1,139 square miles, the state of Rhode Island can easily fit within its boundaries.