Wednesday, November 16, 2005
Beginning Monday, November 14, permits will be available at several locations for cutting a Christmas tree from the Gifford Pinchot National Forest.
Permits may be purchased for $5 per tree at all ranger district offices and at several commercial vendor locations.
Early in the season some areas receive heavy snowfall which limits access and available trees. Before setting out on your trip, call the forest office nearest your destination for the latest in road and weather updates.
Be alert for unpredictable weather and hazardous driving conditions.
Current road status reports can also be found on the Forest's web site. For information on Mount St. Helens and other Forest closures see the Forest Special Conditions web page.
As always, the legislated National Volcanic Monument is closed to tree cutting.
Christmas tree permits are not refundable for any reason.
Tree cutting is prohibited in Wildernesses, developed campgrounds, administrative sites, within 300 feet of streams, on private or state-owned lands within national forest boundaries, and in other posted areas.
Gifford Pinchot National Forest Christmas tree permits are not valid on other land ownerships.
Cutting on private lands is subject to trespass action.
If unsure about areas available for tree cutting, contact the nearest Forest Service Office.
Be prepared for cold and changing winter weather conditions.
Carry tire chains, shovel, flashlights, and blanket in your vehicle.
Bring extra food and hot beverages.
Arrive at your Christmas tree cutting area early to avoid travel in the dark.
Wear proper winter clothing and carry extras in case you get wet.
Most National Forest roads are not maintained or snowplowed during the winter.
Drive safely and slowly -- turn on your lights and watch for ice.
Let someone know where you are going and when to expect you back.