A well-watered Christmas tree holds its needles after cutting for about four weeks — late November to early December is the best time to get your fresh-cut tree for it to last through New Year’s Day. It’s a fun, memorable day for the whole family!
Permits to cut your own Christmas tree on the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests went on sale November 10 on recreation.gov and remain available through January 7. Permits must be purchased in advance and cost $20 each.
Located along Colorado’s Northern Front Range, the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests are offering two Christmas tree cutting areas in 2022. Permit holders are responsible for understanding where it is legal to cut a tree and should spend some time reviewing the information and maps provided on the Forests’ webpage: Where to Harvest Your Christmas Tree
In Larimer County, Christmas tree cutting is allowed across most of the Canyon Lakes Ranger District. Since the Red Feather Lakes Sale Area was impacted by the 2020 Cameron Peak Fire, Christmas tree cutting will be allowed in open portions of the district, rather than a designated area.
In Grand County, Christmas tree cutting is allowed throughout most of the Sulphur Ranger District outside of any closure areas, the Fraser Experimental Forest, and the Winter Park/Mary Jane Ski areas. The Sulphur Ranger District will also have designated areas that are available to the public.
Prior to heading out, be sure to download forest maps onto your smart phone through Avenza, available in the app store. This app works even when there isn’t cell service and will help you make sure you don’t cut trees on private property or prohibited areas. Most roads will be closed to motor vehicles after Nov. 15, but snowmobiles or skis may be used to access some areas. Make sure the Forest Service Road you plan to drive is open using our Road Status Tables.
Colorado’s two largest wildfires impacted these ranger districts in 2020 and therefore some areas may not be safe or available for tree cutting. Be sure to check our Know Before You Go page for more details and have a safe and wonderful holiday season!