Prescott National Forest Christmas Tree Permit

Prescott National Forest

This permit allows you to cut Christmas Trees within designated areas of the Prescott National Forest. For the 2023 season, the permits available encompass most the Bradshaw and Chino Ranger Districts and the Western portion of the Verde Ranger District on Mingus Mountain. Maps displaying areas open to cutting are available for download below. Please be sure to read and agree to all the tips and guidelines when selecting your tree.  

Christmas tree permits are to be used for only personal uses, only one permit per house hold. No modifications, cancellations, or refunds can take place once you complete your purchase.

Additional information is available on the Prescott National Forest website.

Need to Know

Selecting Your Tree

Each forest has limitations on the size of the tree you can cut and the species of trees that are permitted. See below to help you measure and choose a tree that meets your permit's guidelines. 

Tree Height: 10 feet maximum

Stump height: 8 inches maximum

Take the whole tree. Do not remove the top of the tree; cut down the entire tree

If snow is on the ground, remove it from around the stump so you can accurately measure the stump and tree height.

Where to Cut Your Tree

The permit is only good for a tree(s) on the Prescott National Forest and can’t be used to cut a tree on a different National Forest.

"No cutting areas" are shown on the included maps. Be sure to download and/or print a copy of the map and take it with you when cutting.  

Do not cut on private land, in Wilderness areas, within 200 feet of designated campgrounds and recreation areas. 

Do not cut in active timber sales or areas that have been planted with new trees, these areas should be posted on the ground. 

For the latest Forest warnings and closures (including road closures) visit:

Reach out to our Ranger District Offices (see Contact Us section) if you have any specific questions about where to find or cut your tree. 

Planning Your Trip

Helpful Cutting Tips

Tools you might want to consider bringing with you include a measuring tape to ensure you select a tree that fits in your home; handsaw to cut your tree; gloves to protect your hands; boots to protect your feet; a tarp to sit on and/or to move your tree once it's cut; and rope or straps to secure your tree to your vehicle.

Choose a tree from a dense forested area, which will give the remaining trees more space to grow.

Cut the leftover branches from the stump and scatter them.

Carry your tree carefully out of the woods. Dragging the tree will rub off needles and bark. 

If the tree is too big to transport inside of your vehicle, wrap it in canvas to prevent wind damage. 

Once home, cut the bottom of the trunk off and place the freshly cut trunk in a bucket of water. Replenish water. 

If storing your tree outside for a few days before putting it in the house, keep it in an area protected from the wind, such as the north or east side of your house or under a shaded tree.

How to Plan Your Trip

Before you leave home, be sure to measure the space where you plan to place the tree in your home (height and width), and measure the space in your vehicle where you will be transporting the tree.

You must print and bring your Christmas Tree Permit with you.

Cell service may be spotty or unavailable. Be sure someone knows where you are and when to expect you back. Check the latest weather conditions, forest warnings and road closures before you leave on your trip. Bring a map with you. Don’t rely on GPS because it may not be up-to-date with forest service roads. Dress warmly and take extra dry clothes. Expect winter weather, including cold temperatures, snow and winds. Bring plenty of food and water with you as well as an overnight survival kit in case you become stranded. Start your day early. Be sure to find your tree and leave the woods before dark.

Roads may not be plowed. Carry tire chains, shovel(s) and a tow chain. Be sure your vehicle has a full tank of gas. Bring a spare key and give it to someone else in your party. Don’t get locked out of your car! Park in areas so that traffic can get by safely, and do not block gates.

We don't recommend bringing your pets but, if you do, they must be on a leash.

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