US Army Pfc. Daniel Hurst cuts down a Christmas tree at the John T Nieman Nursery, Saturday, Nov. 28, 2015, in Hamilton, Ohio. The farm belonged to his grandfather where he works while on leave. The fourth generation family business is home to 60,000 trees that require regular maintenance throughout the year. The family began planting cut-your-own trees in 1987. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

LAKEVIEW, Ore. – As the holiday season starts next week, Christmas tree permits are currently available from the Fremont-Winema National Forest.

Permits cost $5 and are nonrefundable.  A maximum of five permits can be purchased and can be used through December 25.

The permits are available for purchase from several vendors in Lake and Klamath counties, online through www.Recreation.gov, and by mail from all Fremont-Winema National Forest offices.

This week fifth graders with an Every Kid Outdoors (EKO) voucher can get a free Christmas tree permit.  This is in addition to fourth graders who can get a free permit with their valid EKO pass.

The Fremont-Winema National Forest provided free passes and permits to area fourth graders.  They are starting to provide the vouchers and permits to fifth graders in Lake and Klamath counties.  For more information or for those home schooling, please contact Public Affairs Specialist Shannon Holt at 541-947-6261 or shannon.holt@usda.gov

EKO passes and vouchers can also be acquired by visiting https://everykidoutdoors.gov and completing the application process.  Recreation.gov has an option for EKO passholders to get their Christmas tree permit online, but there is a $2.50 service charge for the transaction.  Just search for the national forest where you want to cut your tree, check the box for the EKO pass, enter the EKO voucher or pass number and complete the purchase information. 

Each permit is valid to cut one tree and must be secured to the tree in a place visible during transport of the tree from the forest.

Permits purchased in person do not expire, so if weather or other conditions make it impossible to get a tree this year, the permit is still valid for use the next year.  Permits purchased on Recreation.gov are only good for this year.

The permit cost through Recreation.gov is $5, but it is only valid for the 2020 season.  Up to five permits can be purchased and there is a $2.50 service charge per transaction.  The purchase can be done from a computer or mobile device.  Just search for “Fremont-Winema National Forest Christmas Tree Permit”. The permit must be printed to be valid and visible on the vehicle dashboard when transporting the tree.

For those who still want to get their permit from their local Forest Service Office, please call or write to the local office at the number or address listed below.  Customers mailing in a request need to include their name, mailing address, phone number, the number of Christmas tree permits being ordered and a check or money order made out to “USDA Forest Service” for the total purchase.

Christmas tree permits from the Fremont-Winema National Forest are valid for use on the Forest in Klamath and Lake Counties.  It is the responsibility of the cutter to ensure they are not getting their tree from private, state or other federal lands.  Christmas trees also cannot be harvested in Congressionally-designated Wilderness Areas, active timber sales, developed recreation sites or tree plantations.

Some parking areas on the Forest require a Sno-Park permit issued by the Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).  Permits are sold at all DMV offices and by permit agents at resorts, sporting goods stores and other retail outlets.  Certain Forest roads are designated as snowmobile trails and closed to wheeled vehicle traffic.

Local Forest offices can answer questions regarding Christmas tree cutting, current conditions and roads.

All Forest offices are open for phone calls Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  The offices will be closed Thursday, November 26 for the Thanksgiving holiday.

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