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Lolo National Forest offering up Christmas tree permits

Posted at 11:39 AM, Nov 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-15 13:40:01-05

MISSOULA — The holiday season is fast approaching and National Forest Christmas tree permits are now available for a cost of $5 at all Lolo National Forest offices with a limit of three permits per household.

Cash and personal check payments will be accepted at all office locations; however, credit cards are only accepted at Missoula and Ninemile Ranger Stations.

Permits may also be purchased at the following locations, however, most vendors can only accept cash or check:

  • Murdoch’s, 2801 W Broadway Street, Missoula
  • Cabela’s, 3650 Brooks Street, Missoula
  • Bob Ward’s, 3015 Paxson Sreet, Missoula
  • Bronc’s Grocery, 16640 Beckwith Street, Frenchtown
  • Clinton Market, 20500 Old Highway 10, Clinton
  • Conoco Feed & Fuel, 1201 Main St, Thompson Falls, MT 59873

The Missoula Ranger District and Lolo National Forest Supervisor’s Office will also be taking permit orders over the phone between Nov. 14 and Dec. 13. Permits purchased over the phone will be mailed to the specified address within one-to-three business days.

People can call (406) 329-3894 for all phone orders. The Missoula Ranger District will also offer extended hours from Dec. 2 until Dec. 5 and will be open until 5:30 p.m.. The office will also be open on Dec. 14 from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.

The Lolo National Forest is also supporting the Every Kid Outdoors (EKO) program and will provide one free Christmas tree permit to every fourth grade student. Fourth grade students must present a valid EKO pass or paper voucher at their local Forest Service office to receive their free permit. To obtain the pass or paper voucher, fourth grade students need to click here.

Here are some tips for a great Christmas tree cutting experience:

  • Be aware of changing weather as well as road and snow conditions.
  • Carry the right gear like a map, proper footwear, and cold weather attire.
  • Bring the right tools: a hand-saw for cutting the tree and a shovel for removing snow around the base of the tree.

Observe these regulations when cutting your Christmas tree:

  • Do not cut trees from plantations or within developed recreation areas, campgrounds or the following areas: Blue Mountain or the Rattlesnake National Recreation Area.
  • Please adhere to the local regulations prior to cutting your tree. It is your responsibility to know where you can and cannot harvest National Forest Christmas trees.
  • Do not leave branches on the stump and trim the stump to no more than five inches above the soil.
  • Do not cut the tops off of trees and do not cut down trees taller than 12 feet.
  • Do not cut trees within 150 feet of riparian areas (creeks or streams) or within Wilderness Areas.

For additional information, visit the Lolo National Forest webpage.