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

    Big Cypress

    National Preserve Florida

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  • Secondary Trail Closure

    As part of a settlement agreement with plaintiffs related to the designation of secondary off-road vehicle trails, all secondary off-road vehicle trails are closed until further environmental review and analysis can be completed. More »

  • October Off-Road Vehicle Advisory Committee Meeting Cancelled

    The National Park Service at Big Cypress National Preserve has cancelled the off-road Vehicle Advisory Committee meeting that was scheduled for Tuesday, October 7. More »

Preserve Announces Annual ORV Closure

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Date: May 12, 2010
Contact: Bob DeGross, 239-695-1107

Beginning on Monday, June 7, 2010 the annual 60-day Off-Road Vehicle (ORV) closure will be implemented within Big Cypress National Preserve. ORV access will be re-opened on Friday, August 6, 2010.

Upon reopening access in August all ORV use within the Turner River Unit of the Preserve will be along designated primary and secondary trails only. Preserve staff are currently working on marking the trail system within the unit and maps of the designated trails will be available at the Oasis ORV Office and on the Preserve website prior to August 6.

The National Park Service continues to move towards ORV use along designated trails only within the Preserve. Presently, designated ORV trail use is required within Zones 2, 3 and 4 of the Stairsteps Unit, and within the Bear Island Unit of the Preserve.

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

Landowners that hold special use permits to access their private properties within the Preserve will retain continued access to their 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.

Did You Know?

A purple galinule walking along spadder dock.

The purple galinule though one of the most colorful birds in Big Cypress, is often well camouflaged. Look carefully along canal edges and gator holes for this beautiful bird. Many of the surrounding colors blend well with the birds feathers.