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Big Cypress National Preserve Backcountry Volunteer Program

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Big Cypress National Preserve Backcountry Volunteer Program. An educated Off-Road-Vehicle user is a responsible ORV user. Jill Wilson and Isobel Kalafarski, March 2009 ORV Advisory Committee Meeting. Goals of the Backcountry Volunteer Program. Increase visitor safety

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slide1

Big Cypress National Preserve Backcountry Volunteer Program

Aneducated

Off-Road-Vehicle user

is a responsible

ORV user.

Jill Wilson and Isobel Kalafarski, March 2009 ORV Advisory Committee Meeting

slide2

Goals of the Backcountry Volunteer Program

  • Increase visitor safety
  • Increase compliance with regulations
    • Including TREAD Lightly!
  • Increase agency (National Park Service) visibility
  • Additional Backcountry staff is available for assistance in day to day operations and in emergencies
slide3

What is a Backcountry Volunteer?

  • Works in partnership with the National Park Service (NPS)
  • Are responsible Off Road Vehicle (ORV) Operators
  • Are stewards of the resource
  • Provide education and educational materials
  • Assists with trail maintenance
  • Aids in minor emergencies
slide4

Why We Need a Backcountry Volunteer Program?

  • Primarily due to an increase in ORV use
    • 1,500 ATVs/ORVs are sold per day in the United States!
    • Each year up to 2,000 ORVs permits are sold in Big Cypress National Preserve
  • There is limited ORV access to other public lands in FL
  • Educated Volunteers help to protect the resource
    • They teach other individuals that if they want access, they need to protect the areas they are permitted to access
  • Volunteers provide education
    • About ORV regulations, hunting regulations, and trail orientation
    • About safety
    • About natural history
slide5

What are the Benefits of Becoming a Backcountry Volunteer?

  • Opportunity to meet other ORV enthusiasts
  • Protecting ORV opportunities by promoting responsible riding
  • Taking pride in public lands by educating others and providing assistance to ORV users and the NPS staff
slide6

Backcountry Volunteer – Who is Right for the Job?

  • Good communicator
  • Safety conscious
  • Professional demeanor
  • Even-tempered
  • Education oriented
slide7

Program Building Blocks -

  • Training
    • ORV training
    • First Aid and Emergency Training
    • Natural History training
  • Quarterly Backcountry Volunteer meetings
  • Teamwork Activities with NPS staff and other Backcountry Volunteers
  • Easily identifiable to ORV riders as Backcountry Volunteers by wearing a designated uniform
slide8

Training / Skill Requirements

  • Big Cypress ORV Course
  • ASI Riders Course
  • Tread Lightly Training
  • First Aid and CPR Training
  • Radio and GPS Training
  • Data Collection Training
  • Successful and Safe Visitor Contacts Training
  • Small Equipment Repair Skills
slide9

ORV Safety Equipment Needed

ATVs:

  • Approved helmet
  • Protective eyewear
  • Gloves
  • Long pants
  • Long sleeved shirt/Volunteer Uniform
  • Boots
  • Other:
  • First aid kit
  • Portable radio
  • GPS - Global Positioning System
  • PLB - Personnel Locator Beacon
  • Cell phone
slide10

Next Steps

  • Finalize Backcountry Volunteer Handbook and Training Course
  • Finalize Position Description for Volunteer Work
  • Begin Recruitment of Volunteers
  • Designate Equipment needs and look for Funding for Program Needs
  • Conduct First Training Sessions
slide11

Ultimate Goal for Backcountry Volunteer Program

  • To recruit a corps of 10 – 15 local volunteers, to work as pairs on a regular, continuing basis.
  • To find one or two volunteers to assist the NPS as “leads” for the program.
  • To have a well trained corps of volunteers to:
    • Assist visitors in the backcountry
    • Help with maintenance, resource and emergency needs as they arise
    • Protect ORV opportunities by promoting responsible riding
    • Educate others about the Preserve and the NPS
slide12

Aneducated

Off-Road-Vehicle user

is a responsible

ORV user.

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