Currently there is fire activity within the Preserve. More »
Campfire Ban in Effect.
Due to severe fire conditions campfires restrictions are currently in place. More »
2013 Zone 4 Closure
Beginning at 12:01 am Monday, April 8, 2013, the Zone 4 airboat access within Big Cypress National Preserve will be closed due to low water conditions. More »
Beginning Monday, May 13 through Friday, August 16 camping will be available at the Midway Campground and the “loop” in the Bear Island Campground within Big Cypress National Preserve. All other established campgrounds will be closed. More »
Big Cypress Fire Update X
Contact: Bob DeGross, 239-695-1107
Contact: Chris Worth, 715-209-0095
The Preserve remains closed to all recreational access and activities in areas north of I-75, and within the areas of the Addition Lands south of I-75 and east of Turner River Road. Additionally, there is a mandatory evacuation in affect for camp owners and residents within the Bear Island Unit and those areas of the Addition Lands north of I-75 and west of Turner River Road. The Florida National Scenic Trail north of U.S. 41, to the northern border of the Preserve, is also closed.
Yesterday’s Fire Activities:
- The Midrest Fire’s main flame front is about 4 miles east of Highway 29 (north of I-75); however, the fire’s advance has greatly slowed due to its encounter with the moister fuels conditions of the East Hinson Marsh. Firefighters, with the help of water drops from aircraft, made good progress building and burning out lines along both the Midrest Fire’s northern and southern flanks. Where conditions were favorable, burnout operations were initiated to reinforce the control lines.
- The west flank of the Strickland Fire continues to spread to the west and north. Fireline supervisors scouted out potential locations along Strickland’s northern perimeter in order to construct lines and check the fire’s slow spread. Fire crews persisted with mop up and/or patrol operations on the other fires in the complex.
Date Started: May 4, 2007; Cause of Ignition: Lightning; Location: north & east of Everglades City; Size: 52,000 acres; Percent contained: 55%; Est. Containment: Unknown; Aircraft: 4; Handcrews: 5; Equipment: Engines 14, Dozers 3; Number of Personnel: 273; Injuries to date: None
The BICY Complex is made up of two major fires:
The Strickland Fire, located north of I-75 and, west of Levee 28 Interceptor Canal is estimated at about 30,000 acres. The Midrest Fire, situated north of I-75 and west of the Strickland Fire has grown to 18,900 acres.
Today’s Planned Events:
- Firefighters will continue laboring on the north and south sides of the Midrest Fire using swamp buggies, aircraft and tracked vehicles to help with suppression efforts. The west side of the fire continues to be difficult to extinguish because of severe drying conditions and high winds.
- On the Strickland Fire, fire crews will continue to snuff out “hot spots” and mop-up along its north, east, and south sides. Opportunities for burnout operations will continue to be assessed. All other fires will be patrol status.
- Air patrol will also be examining the fires within the complex, such as the FT6 Fire, with specialized, infrared, heat sensing equipment to find out where “hot spots” might still be smoldering.
- Jeff Whitney’s Southwest Area National Incident Management Team (IMT) will be transitioning with members of the Northern Rockies National IMT in preparation to take over command of the Big Cypress Complex on Sunday, May 27 at 7:00 a.m.
Temperature: High 90, winds E/NE 8-12 mph, with a relative humidity of 43%.
Updates will not be posted on this site, or emailed to typical recipients on 5/27 and 28. Updated information for those days can be viewed at the links on the right side of this page.
Did You Know?
Airboats are one of the approved ways to access remote areas of Big Cypress National Preserve. Remember, all off-road vehicle access requires a valid permit, and visitors operating ORVs need to know the legal areas they can operate.