Christmas Tree Permits
Here's A Favorite Outdoor Holiday Tradition For Many Families
November 15, 2014
Permits to cut your own Christmas tree will be available starting Nov. 20 at Tonto National Forest offices.
The Tonto National Forest will sell Christmas tree permits starting on Thursday, Nov. 20. Permits will be available at the Mesa and Payson Ranger Districts and the Tonto Supervisors Office, Monday –Friday, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
The Pleasant Valley Ranger District will be open for permit sales on Thursdays and Fridays, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. In addition, the Payson Ranger District will be open on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon, from Nov. 22 to Dec. 20.
It is important to note that Tonto National Forest Christmas tree permits will not be sold at Big 5 Sporting Goods stores this year.
Permits will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis until they are gone and can be purchased with cash, check, or credit card. Customers will be provided a map that shows the designated cutting areas along with additional Christmas tree cutting instructions. The permit will allow the holder to cut a tree within a designated area between the dates of Nov. 22 through Dec. 24.
Rules For Christmas Tree Permits
• Each Christmas tree permit is $15 and allows permit holders to cut a tree up to 10 feet tall;
• One tree per household. One person may purchase up to four permits for other families, not living in the household;
• Permits are for personal use only;
• Trees must be cut within designated cutting areas;
• Trees may be cut until Dec. 24;
• Trees must be under 10 feet tall; and
• There are no refunds on Christmas tree permits.
Tree cutters are reminded to be prepared for sudden weather changes and colder conditions when in higher elevations. A fun family outing can become miserable and even dangerous with a quick change of weather for the unprepared.
The permits expire on Dec. 25; however, forest officials recommend cutting your tree early in the season before the higher elevations are snow bound. Trees can stay fresh for quite some time if cared for correctly.
Taking Care Of Your Tree
To help keep your tree fresh, cut two inches from the bottom of your tree when you get home and place it in water. Keep your tree watered and in a shady spot until you are ready to move it into the house.
Another helpful hint is to bring an old tarp to wrap your tree. Then, when you drag your tree out of the forest, the tarp protects the tree and helps you avoid breaking branches. The tarp can also help avoid wind damage on the way home.
For more information on Christmas tree permits on the Tonto National Forest, please call the Payson Ranger District at (928) 474-7900.