News Release

Status of South Florida National Parks and Preserve During Federal Government Shutdown

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Date: December 22, 2018
Contact: Michelle Collier, 305-224-4238

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Date: December 22, 2018

General Park Information: Available at respective park website only (provided at bottom below).

Local and Regional Media Queries: Available during furlough in emergency circumstances only e-mail us, 305-224-4238

National Media Outlet Queries: Contact  e-mail us

Due to the lapse in federal appropriations, the National Park Service (NPS) is unable to fully staff the properties under its management. It is not feasible to close or otherwise prohibit all access to NPS properties. Under these circumstances, the planned and current accessibility of Everglades National Park, Biscayne National Park, Dry Tortugas National Park, and Big Cypress National Preserve under this government shutdown, is reflected below, and subject to change without prior notice.

Big Cypress National Preserve: 

  • All Superintendent's Compendium* Closures Remain in Effect
  • Preserve Headquarters - Closed
  • Oasis Visitor Center - Open
  • Swamp Welcome Center - Closed
  • Campgrounds: Bear Island, Burn's Lake, Gator Head, Midway, Monument Lake, Mitchell's Landing, Pinecrest Group Camping, Pink Jeep – Open but unstaffed
  • Commercial Use Authorizations - Will operate as usual
  • Special Use Permits - No permits issued and uses requiring oversight and monitoring ceased
  • Landowner access - Accessible
  • Vault toilets - Accessible
  • Recreational ORV access - Will remain unchanged
  • Hunting season - Will remain in progress, except in designated closed areas
  • Loop Road, Turner River Road, Wagonwheel, and Birdon Roads - Accessible
  • H.P. Williams, Kirby Storter Boardwalk, the Swamp Welcome Center boardwalk, Fire Prairie Trail, and Gator Hook - Accessible 
  • Turner River Canoe Launch and Halfway Creek - Accessible - Caution Advised

 

Biscayne National Park

  • All Superintendent's Compendium* Closures Remain in Effect
  • Marine Waters - Publicly Accessible - Extreme Caution Advised
  • Dante Fascell Visitor Center - Closed
  • Biscayne National Park Institute Boat Eco Adventures - Open
  • Commercial Use Authorizations - Will operate as usual
  • Boca Chita, Elliott Key and Adams Key - Accessible but no visitor services and restrooms.

 

Dry Tortugas National Park:

  • All Superintendent's Compendium* Closures Remain in Effect
  • Marine Waters - Publicly Accessible - Extreme Caution Advised
  • Garden Key & Fort Jefferson - Publicly Accessible per Superintendent Compendium
  • Fort Jefferson Bookstore - Will operate as usual
  • Yankee Freedom Boat Tours - Will operate as usual
  • Key West Seaplane Adventures - Will operate as usual
  • Garden Key Campground - Closed (Campers will not be asked to leave)
  • Mooring balls available on a first-come first-serve basis
  • Special Use Permits - No permits issued and uses requiring oversight and monitoring ceased

 

 Everglades National Park:

  • All Superintendent's Compendium* Closures Remain in Effect
  • Marine Waters - Publicly Accessible - Extreme Caution Advised
  • Key Largo - Closed
  • Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center & Public Restrooms - Closed
  • Main Park Road - Accessible
    • Park Entrance Station - Unstaffed
    • Homestead Trolley - No Park Rangers onboard
  • Royal Palm - Accessible
    • Anhinga Trail - Accessible
    • Royal Palm Gift Shop - Will operate as usual
    • Restrooms - Open
  • Nike Missile Base - Closed
  • Dan Beard & Bill Robertson Centers - Closed
  • Long Pine Key
    • Day Use Area - Accessible (Restrooms Closed)
    • Campground - Open
  • West Lake - Accessible (Restrooms Closed)
  • Flamingo
    • General Area - Accessible
    • Campground - Open
    • Visitor Center - Closed
    • Restrooms - Closed
    • Fish Cleaning Station - Closed
    • Boat Launches - Accessible
    • Backcountry Camping - Open first come first serve permits will not be issued.
  • Coopertown Airboats - Will operate as usual
  • Gator Park - Will operate as usual
  • Everglades Safari Park - Will operate as usual
  • Shark Valley
    • Park Entrance Station - Unstaffed
    • Tram Tours & Bicycle Rentals - Will operate as usual
    • NPS Visitor Center and Bookstore - Closed
    • Parking lot - accessible per Superintendent's Compendium
    • Restrooms
  • Gulf Coast
    • NPS Visitor Station and Book Store - Closed
    • Everglades National Park Boat Tours - Will operate as usual
    • Backcountry Camping - Open first come first serve permits will not be issued.
  • Commercial Use Authorizations
    • Fishing Guides - Will operate as usual
    • Birding Guides - Will operate as usual
    • Other Guide Services - Will operate as usual
      • Special Use Permits - No permits issued and uses requiring oversight and monitoring ceased
  • Environmental Education Centers - Closed
    • Hidden Lake - Closed
    • Loop Road - Closed

 

Park visitors are advised to use extreme caution if choosing to enter NPS property, as NPS personnel will not be available to provide guidance, assistance, maintenance, or emergency response. Any entry onto NPS property during this period of federal government shutdown is at the visitor’s sole risk.

 

The NPS will not operate parks during the shutdown period, and no visitor services will be provided. The NPS will not issue permits, conduct educational programs, collect trash, operate or provide restrooms, maintain roads or walkways (including plowing and ice melting), or provide visitor information.

 

The NPS will cease providing services for NPS-operated campgrounds, including maintenance, janitorial, bathrooms, showers, check-in/check-out, and reservations. Visitors in campgrounds will not be asked to leave, but no services will be available, including check-in/check-out services. Visitors holding campground reservations should be aware that there is no guarantee their reserved campsite will be ready and available should they arrive during a government shutdown.

 

The National Park Service shutdown contingency plan is available at www.doi.gov/shutdown.

 

*The Superintendent Compendiums referenced herein are available at each park’s respective website:nps.gov/evernps.gov/drtonps.gov/bisc and nps.gov/bicy. Please note that due to furlough of NPS staff, neither these websites, nor the parks’ social media, will be maintained.

 

Live feed from the Anhinga Trail Webcam in Everglades National Park remains available 24/7.

 



Last updated: December 22, 2018

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

40001 State Road 9336
Homestead, FL 33034

Phone:

(305) 242-7700

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