Chippewa Forest Tradition. Mary Nordeen – guest blogger
Greetings from the Chippewa National Forest front desk! I sold 6 Christmas Tree tags this morning, and it definitely has me in the holiday spirit despite the rain falling outside. People can pick up a Christmas Tree tag for $5.00 at the Walker Ranger District or any Chippewa National Forest office. We see a lot of familiar faces as people stop in each year for a permit. Cutting a Christmas tree on the National Forest has become a holiday tradition. All you need is a permit, sharp axe, thermos of cocoa and a little patience as you search for your tree.
The majority of people who come in for a permit are looking for a balsam fir, known for their fresh scent and holding their needles throughout the holiday season. Trees can be cut on any National Forest land, with the exception of administrative sites and recreation areas (campgrounds) and/or within view of roads and trails. If you have any questions about road access or areas that might bring better odds to find the tree species you are looking for, just ask us when you pick up your permit.
After you cut your tree, just attach the tree permit to a branch before transporting. At our house, we take our tree outside after the holidays and put it in the snow bank next to the bird feeders. The birds use it for cover while they are feeding. Instant habitat!
Don’t forget that 4th graders can pick up their “Every Kid in a Park” pass right now and get a free Christmas Tree permit! Check out the Every Kid in a Park website for more information and to print out a voucher. We have seen a few 4th graders in with their families picking up a permit for the first time! Starting a new tradition on the Forest!
Enjoy the season!