articles

Want to Cut Down Your Own Tree? Christmas Tree Permits Available Now!

By Recreation.gov November 13, 2022

Whether you're carrying on a beloved family tradition or creating a new one, make memories that will last a lifetime and support the health of forests across the Centennial State this holiday season by cutting down your own Christmas tree.

National Forests in Colorado have Christmas Tree Permits available through recreation.gov.


🎄 5 Safety Tips for Cutting Down Your Own Christmas Tree

  • Read all the rules on your permit. Some permits have very specific instructions for the size of tree you can cut down and the areas where you can find a tree.
  • Due to the recent mountain pine beetle epidemic, before you head into the forest to cut your Christmas tree, look up — look down — look around! Avoid standing dead trees. Stay out of recently burned areas. Be aware that trees can fall at any time and use extra caution on windy days.
  • Check the latest weather conditions, forest warnings, and road closures before you leave on your trip. Roads may not be plowed. Four-wheel drive or all-wheel drive is recommended. Carry tire chains, a shovel, and a tow chain.
  • Bring a map with you. Don't rely on GPS because it may not be up-to-date with forest service roads.
  • Start your day early. Be sure to find your tree and leave the woods before dark. Plan to return to your vehicle by 3:00 pm.

🎄 FREE Christmas Tree Permits for 4th Graders

The Forest Service offers a free Christmas tree-cutting permit to every fourth-grade student with an Every Kid Outdoors pass. Christmas tree-cutting permits in Colorado vary from $10-$20.

Learn more about the Every Kid Outdoors program HERE.


🎄 In-Person Christmas Tree Permit Vendors:

  • County Ace Hardware, Granby
  • Fireside Market and Eatery, Winter Park
  • Murdoch's Ranch and Home Supply, Fraser
  • Winter Park Chamber of Commerce, Winter Park
  • Grand Lake's Visitor's Center, Grand Lake

🎄 Where to Cut Down Your Christmas Trees

Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests

  • Christmas tree permits will be on sale beginning November 10, with permitted cutting through January 6 for the Sulphur Ranger District of Grand County.
  • Christmas tree cutting is permitted in the Canyon Lakes Ranger District of Larimer County from November 25 through January 7.

White River National Forest

Pike and San Isabel National Forest

  • South Platte Ranger District (closest to Denver): Tree-cutting season is 11/25–12/10.
  • Pikes Peak Ranger District (closest to Colorado Springs): Permits available 11/25–12/18. 
  • South Park Ranger District (near Fairplay): Permits available 10/13–12/31. 
  • Leadville Ranger District (near Leadville): Permits available 11/10–12/31.
  • Salida Ranger District is located in the heart of Colorado along the Continental Divide surrounding the communities of Salida and Buena Vista. Permits are available 11/10–12/31.
  • San Carlos Ranger District includes the Sangre De Cristo Mountains, the Wet Mountains, and the Spanish Peaks. Permits available 11/10–12/31.

What are you waiting for? Cue the holiday tunes, pour yourself some cocoa, find a forest near you, and get your Christmas tree permit today!