© 2024 Connecticut Public

FCC Public Inspection Files:
Public Files Contact · ATSC 3.0 FAQ
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

For $5, you could get a permit to cut down a Christmas tree in White Mountain National Forest

White Mountain National Forest sign in Easton, NH. Dan Tuohy photo / NHPR. NHPR.org
Dan Tuohy
White Mountain National Forest sign in Easton, New Hampshire.

A Christmas tree’s journey to the living room can take many forms. Nowadays, most live trees come from a farm. Others are carefully constructed out of polyethylene and PVC.

But the White Mountain National Forest offers a different option: with the purchase of a five dollar permit, you can cut down your own wild conifer.

There are some rules. One tree per household, and only hand tools are allowed – no chainsaws. The tree must be less than 6 inches in diameter at chest height, and the stump left behind must be 10 inches or smaller.

Those cutting down their own evergreen will need to be more than 100 feet from recreation areas like campgrounds and trailheads, and trees cannot be taken from wilderness areas, experimental forests, or private land.

Further listening: Rick Ganley and Mary McIntyre cut down a Christmas tree in the White Mountains

The Forest Service says before leaving home, people should be sure to measure the space where they plan to put the tree, and make sure they have space in their vehicle for transporting it.

Practicing outdoor safety like dressing warmly, bringing extra food and water, and carrying an overnight survival kit is also a good idea, officials say. Cell service and weather can be unpredictable.

Permits are available online or at White Mountain National Forest offices.

Mara Hoplamazian reports on climate change, energy, and the environment for NHPR.

Stand up for civility

This news story is funded in large part by Connecticut Public’s Members — listeners, viewers, and readers like you who value fact-based journalism and trustworthy information.

We hope their support inspires you to donate so that we can continue telling stories that inform, educate, and inspire you and your neighbors. As a community-supported public media service, Connecticut Public has relied on donor support for more than 50 years.

Your donation today will allow us to continue this work on your behalf. Give today at any amount and join the 50,000 members who are building a better—and more civil—Connecticut to live, work, and play.

Related Content