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Christmas tree cutting permits to cut your own tree for forests in Washington State

On the busiest Christmas tree hunting and bough gathering weeks of the year, Washington's Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is asking for the public's help to protect school trust land trees. Trees and boughs are not available from trust lands, but private you-cut and national forest permits are available. "Cutting a Christmas tree is a great family tradition," said Doug Sutherland, Commissioner of Public Lands. "But people need to remember that cutting trees or boughs from a state forests isn't allowed."

Where to get a National Forest Christmas tree cutting permit.

For a $5 fee, you can cut a tree in a national forest. Permits are available for different forests at different locations and with different conditions and restrictions, so be sure to scroll down the page to find the forest closest to you:

For the Olympic National Forests:

Forest Service Christmas Tree permits go on sale in mid-November. Permits are $5.00 each and are good for one U-cut tree on the Olympic National Forest. Permits may be purchased at any Olympic National Forest office. Credit cards are now accepted as well as cash and checks.
Permits can also be purchased through the mail with this Christmas Tree- Mail Order Form (PDF). Please mail check for $5 for each tree permit, payable to Forest Service, to the district office for the area where you plan to cut your tree. See office locations/hours.

  • Olympia at 1835 Black Lake Blvd. Phone: 360-956-2402.
  • Olympic National Forest Headquarters in Olympia (360-956-2300)
  • Hood Canal Ranger District Office in Quilcene (360-765-2200)
  • Pacific Ranger District Office in Quinault (360-288-2525)
  • Hoodsport Visitor Information Center (360-877-2021)
  • Forks Visitor Information Center (360-374-6522)

There are many other National Forests that also participate in the Permit Cutting program.

For the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest Christmas Tree permits available at theses locations:

The main information phone number for Christmas tree cutting permits is (425) 783-6000 for Mt Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest and the Seattle - Tacoma area. 

  • Mt. Baker Ranger Station
    810 State Route 20 Sedro-Woolley, WA. Phone: 360-856-5700 Ext. 515. Open: Monday to Friday from  8 am to 4:30 pm, November 29, 9 am to 3 pm, December 6, 9 am to 3 pm, December 13, 9 am to 3 pm.
  • Verlot Public Service Center
    33515 Mountain Loop Highway, Granite Falls, WA. Phone: 360-691-7791. Open: November 28-30, 9 a.m. - 3:00 pm, Dec.6-7, 9 a.m. - 3:00 pm, December 13-14, 9 a.m. - 3:00 pm.
  • Enumclaw Office
    450 Roosevelt Ave. E. Enumclaw, WA. Phone: 360-825-6585. Open: Monday to Friday from  8 am to 4:30 pm, November 29-30, 8 am to 3:30 pm, December 6-7, 8 am to 3:30 pm, December 13-14, 8 am to 3:30 pm.  
  • Glacier Public Service Center
    Mt. Baker Highway 542 Glacier, WA. Phone: 360-599-2714. Open: Weekends, 9 am to 3 pm, Starting November 22.
  • Skykomish Ranger Station
    74920 NE Stevens Pass Hwy, br> SSkykomish, WA. Phone: 360-677-2414. Open: Monday to Friday from  8 am to 4:30 pm, November 29, 8 am to 3:00 pm, December 6, 8 am to 3:00 pm.
  • Seattle REI
    Outdoor Recreation Information Centerbr>222 Yale Ave. N. Seattle, WA. Phone: 206-470-4060. Open: Daily 10 am to 6 pm, Closed Thanksgiving.
  • Darrington Ranger Station
    1405 Emens Ave. N. Darrington, WA. Phone: 360-436-1155. Open: Monday to Friday from  8 am to 4:30 pm, November 29, 9 am to 3 pm, December 6, 9 am to 3 pm, December 13, 9 am to 3 pm.
  • Snoqualmie Ranger Stations 
    902 SE North Bend Way North Bend, WA. Phone: 425-888-1421. Open: Monday to Friday from  8 am to 4:30 pm, November 29, 8 am to 3:30 pm, December 6, 8 am to 3:30 pm, December 13, 8 am to 3:30 pm.
  • REI Alderwood Store
    3000 184th St. SW Lynnwood, WA. Phone: 425-640-6200. Open: Monday to Saturday from 10 am to 9 pm, Sun. 11 a.m.-7 pm, Closed Thanksgiving.

For the Gifford Pinchot National Forest permits are available at the following locations:

The main information phone number for Christmas tree cutting permits is (360) 891-5000 for the Gifford Pinchot and the southern part of the state.  Visitors can purchase Christmas tree permits at the following Gifford Pinchot National Forest offices and vendor locations near you. All Forest Service offices will be closed Thanksgiving Day.

  • Gifford Pinchot National Forest Headquarters
    10600 NE 51st Circle, Vancouver, WA 98682
    Office Hours: Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (closed for lunch from noon until 1 p.m. daily) (360) 891-5001.
  • Mt. Adams Ranger District
    2455 Highway 141, Trout Lake, WA 98650
    Office Hours: Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (closed for lunch from noon until 1 p.m. daily) (509) 395-3400.
  • Cowlitz Valley Ranger District
    10024 US Hwy 12 - PO Box 670, Randle, WA 98377
    Office Hours: Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m.4:30 p.m. (closed for lunch from noon until 1 p.m. daily) (360) 497-1100.
  • Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument
    42218 NE Yale Bridge Rd., Amboy, WA 98607
    Office Hours: Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m.4:30 p.m. (360) 449-7800.
  • Commercial Vendor Locations (Call for hours of operation and information):
    Trout Lake, WA - Little Mountain (True Value) Hardware (509) 395-2773
    Carson, WA - Wind River Market (509) 427-5565
    Home Valley, WA - Home Valley Store (509) 427-4015
    Stevenson, WA - Main St. Convenience Store (open 24 hours) (509) 427-5653
    Randle, WA - Fischer's Market (360) 497-5355
    Packwood, WA- Blanton's Market (360) 494-6101
    Ashford, WA - Ashford General Store (360) 569-2377
    Elbe, WA - Elbe Grocery (360) 569-2766
    Amboy, WA - Amboy Market (360) 247-5421
    Amboy, WA - Chelatchie Prairie General Store (360) 247-5529
    Cougar, WA - Lakeside Country Store (360) 238-5202
    Cougar, WA - Cougar Store (360) 238-5228
    Kalama, WA - Kalama Spirits and Tobacco (360) 673-4991

Naches Ranger District

Christmas tree cutting permits are now available to purchase at the Naches Ranger Station. Tree permits sell for $5.00 each and allow you to cut up to a maximum tree size of 15 feet or dig a tree to remove as a transplant. Each permit is for one Christmas tree and only two permits can be issued per household. Permits are not refundable. Instructions are given when purchasing a permit along with tree care and transportation tips.

For your convenience, the following businesses are also selling tree permits:

Slim's Market, Many's Chinook Center, Gold Creek Station, Whistlin' Jack Lodge, and Rimrock Grocery Store in the Naches area; Helms True Value Hardware and Save-On Foods in Selah, and at Right Hardware and Hyperspud Sports in Yakima. District Ranger Randy Shepard. Naches Ranger District 10237 U.S. Highway 12 Naches, WA 98937 The office phone number is (509) 653-1400.

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest.

Permits are available at all Forest Service offices and various businesses in Okanogan, Chelan, Kittitas, and Yakima Counties. Permits are not refundable.
Christmas tree permits are on sale for $5 each at all ranger stations and the forest headquarters in Wenatchee. The $5 permit allows a family to cut a tree or dig a live transplant tree. Permits may be purchased in person or by mail. For those who can't make it into any of our offices during daily business hours many local businesses are also selling Christmas tree permits. See the bottom of this page for local vendors selling Christmas tree permits.

Umatilla National Forest

The main information phone number for Christmas tree cutting permits is (541) 278-3716 for the Umatilla National Forest and the eastern southern part of the state area around the tri-cities.

Tree Cutting Instructions:

  • Cut one tree per permit.
  • Five permits per household maximum.
  • Select trees not more than twelve (12) feet tall.
  • Tree topping is prohibited.
  • Cut the tree twelve (12) inches or less above the ground level. Remove snow around tree base if needed. Cut off live limbs remaining on the stump.
  • To make your trip back to the car easier, slide your tree on a plastic tarp.
  • Upon return to your vehicle, punch out month, day, and year on permit. Immediately attach securely to your freshly cut tree where it will be clearly visible.

Help protect state trust land trees that will build Washington's future schools

Please be careful when you cut a tree or some boughs. Cutting boughs can destroy decades-old trees that are well on their way to becoming forests. When the top branches are cut off a young tree, it is more vulnerable to disease that ultimately can destroy it.

As always, DNR officials are asking private citizens to help thwart theft by calling the county sheriff or a toll-free DNR hotline, 1-800-527-3305, if they suspect trees or boughs are being cut from trust lands. Penalties for damaging or stealing trust land evergreens can include fines and jail time. The more serious cases are turned over to a county prosecutor who cooperates with DNR

Notes:

In addition to the information above, check out additional rules for these areas:

Cowlitz County

References

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie

Gifford

Naches Ranger District

Events, Other information and related links: