Christmas tree permits for the Malheur National Forest are now available to purchase at local Forest Service offices.
Permits are valid on National Forest System lands only and do not authorize tree cutting on private, state or other federally managed lands.
Permits cost $5 each and are limited to five per household. Tree permits and forest maps are available during regular office hours, Mondays through Fridays, at any Malheur National Forest office.
Again this year, all fourth graders are eligible for a free tree permit through the national Every Kid in a Park initiative. In order for students to receive a free tree permit, they must present a valid paper voucher printed from the Every Kid in a Park website. Visit everykidinapark.gov and follow instructions to obtain and print the paper voucher. Then, bring the paper voucher to the forest office to claim the free permit. Students must be present to pick up the free permit. These free permits can only be issued through the forest office and will not be available through local vendors who sell permits.
Regulations for cutting Christmas Trees on the Malheur National Forest:
• Validate the permit by completely removing month, date and year, securely attaching it to the tree trunk between the limbs.
• Make sure the permit is visible during transportation.
• Clean up any trimmings or limbs and leave stumps no higher than 10 inches. It is illegal to “top” a tree.
• Cut off any green limbs left on the stump (can be used for greens).
• Maximum height of tree to be cut is 12 feet tall on the Malheur National Forest.
• Do not cut on private land, in wilderness areas, designated campgrounds, active timber sales or existing tree plantations.
• Only trees that have another tree within 20 feet may be cut to maintain disbursement of trees and optimum growth for the future.
• Do not cut trees in posted Old Growth Areas or within ¼ mile of wild and scenic corridors.
• Christmas tree cutting within sight of state highways is prohibited.
For more information or to obtain permits, contact or visit the Malheur National Forest Supervisor’s Office, 431 Patterson Bridge Road, John Day, 541-575-3000; the Emigrant Creek Ranger District, 265 Highway 20 South, Hines, 541-573-4300; or the Prairie City Ranger District, 327 SW Front St., Prairie City, 541-820-3800; or online at fs.usda.gov/malheur.
• Tell someone where you’re going and when you expect to be home.
• Carry your trees carefully out of the woods. Dragging the tree will rub off needles and bark.
• If the tree is too big to transport in the trunk of your vehicle, wrap it in canvas to prevent wind damage.
• Once home, cut the bottom of the trunk off and place the freshly cut trunk in a bucket of water. Replenish water frequently.