Sunday is the last day to cut a Christmas tree on the Canyon Lakes Ranger District near Red Feather Lakes. The area opened December 1 and continues through December 9.
Many tree cutters came out last weekend during the warm weather. More than 2,100 trees were sold. Remember, this area never runs out of permits but you need to cut by Sunday. Last year approximately 3,100 trees were sold. The High Park Fire did not impact the tree cutting area.
Permits can be purchased from the Canyon Lakes Ranger District office (2150 Centre, Ave., Building E, in Fort Collins or at the cutting area on the weekends (cash preferred).
The cutting area is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. For cutting during the week, permits must be purchased in advance from one of the offices listed above. On the weekends, permits can be purchased at the cutting area. Smokey Bear will greet people at the cutting area on the weekend from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., so make sure to pack your camera.
It can get cold while looking for your tree, remember to dress for the weather. You also need the right tools to cut your tree and no chainsaws are allowed. The forest is unseasonably dry this year, so please use caution when parking off the road in tall grass and warming fires are discouraged.
The cutting area is located north of Fort Collins, south of Red Feather Lakes. Take Highway 287 north of Fort Collins for 21 miles. At Livermore, turn left onto Red Feather Lakes Road (County Road 74E) and travel approximately 16 miles to the Boy Scout Road (County Road 68C). Turn left on the Boy Scout Road and drive seven miles to the entrance of the cutting area. Signs or U.S. Forest Service personnel will provide directions the rest of the way. Chains or four-wheel drive is required to enter the cutting area.
For more information about cutting your own tree, please contact the visitor information office at 970-295-6700 or visit the web at www.fs.usda.gov/arp.