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 »
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 »
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?
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.