Due to a swarm of lightning-strike wildfires in the northern portion of Big Cypress National Preserve, the following closures are effective immediately, including a portion of the Florida Trail normally accessed from MM 63 Rest Area on I-75 extending both south and north.
The following information comes straight from the preserve:
Naples, FL – Due to multiple wildfires burning in the Northern areas of Big Cypress National Preserve, an emergency temporary closure will take effect immediately.
The temporary closure includes lands administered by Big Cypress National Preserve south of Interstate 75, from mile marker 59 to mile marker 75 (Turner River Road), south to Upper Wagon Wheel Road. The closure also extends to lands administered by Big Cypress National Preserve north of Interstate 75, from mile marker 59 to mile marker 70, north to the Big Cypress Preserve Boundary.
These areas will be closed in order to provide for public and firefighters safety in areas of high fire activity. These areas are closed to all recreational use including Off-Road Vehicles (ORV), hiking, and camping. This area includes portions of the Florida National Scenic Trail from mile 12, traveling north to the northern boundary of Big Cypress National Preserve.
For your safety, it is not safe for the public to enter the closure area. Helicopters, swamp buggies, engines, and crews continue to work on the fire perimeter. The roads and trails in these areas are being heavily used by firefighting equipment and personnel and lead directly to active fire areas.
All other areas of the Preserve including visitor use areas and visitors centers along Tamiami Trail remain open at this time.