Boise and Payette National Forests Begin Christmas Tree Permit Sales Nov. 18

Release Date: Nov 6, 2017  

Contact(s): Venetia Gempler 208-373-4105

A big christmas tree decorated in blue


Boise, Idaho, Nov. 6, 2017-- The Payette and Boise National Forest vendors will begin selling Christmas tree permits Saturday, Nov. 18.  On Monday, Nov. 20, permits will be available at Payette and Boise National Forest Offices.  Christmas tree permits are $10, and valid through Dec. 25.


Each permit allows one tree to be cut, with a limit of three permits per family. The maximum height of a permitted tree is 12 feet. Permits are valid for use on both National Forests – a permit purchased at a Boise National Forest office, can be used on the Payette and vice versa. A Christmas tree permit is for personal use only - commercial use is prohibited. Permits are not refundable.


Harvesting a Christmas tree is a fun adventure and often a traditional family event. Please be certain you are fully prepared for winter conditions and winter travel before heading out. All purchasers are provided with information about where a Christmas tree may be harvested, as well as restrictions and helpful tips.


Fourth-graders receive a Free Permit!  In coordination with the “Every Kid in a Park” program, fourth-graders can receive a free Christmas tree permit. The Forest Service is among several federal agencies supporting the Every Kid in a Park initiative which is a nationwide call to action to build the next generation of outdoor enthusiasts. The initiative provides a free entry pass to many fee locations throughout the nation. Fourth-grade students, with the assistance of an adult, can register for the initiative at


To receive a free Christmas tree permit, the fourth-grader and a parent must go to a Forest Service office in person with the “voucher” they received from the online registration.


Commercial vendors do not except the vouchers – free Christmas tree permits to registered fourth-graders are only available at Forest Service offices. Free Christmas tree permits cannot be sent through the mail or electronically.


Photo of 4 people holding a cut tree


Safety Guidelines:


If an unusually heavy snowfall occurs in southwest Idaho, and forest roads become a safety concern for the public, some areas may be closed early to Christmas tree gathering as Forest roads are not plowed. Call ahead and check websites for road conditions before heading out. Please do not block private or county roadways at any time.


A Few Reminders when traveling to the Forests:


  • Use the Christmas tree brochures with instructions provided by offices and vendors.
  • Practice winter survival and driving techniques.
  • Bring the right tools, such as a saw and a shovel, so the tree can be cut to within 6” of the ground’s surface.
  • Take along emergency equipment, plenty of food and water, and try to use a 4-wheel drive vehicle if you are planning to travel in snow country.
  • Always advise neighbors and family friends of the route you intend to take, and include a map of your destination, and the time that you plan to be gone.
  • Be prepared for the possibility of a long day as time may be needed to search for the “perfect tree.”
  • According to Idaho state law, any vehicle carrying a load that extends more than 4 feet past the tailgate or end of the car, must display a red or florescent orange flag tied on the end of the load to caution other drivers.
  • Much of the Boise National Forest has burned in recent years. Please help our Forests with recovery and restoration efforts by not cutting green trees in burned areas. Check the alerts and notices pages of the Forest websites for closure areas.


Christmas Tree Permit Locations:

Payette National Forest Offices


All Payette National Forest offices are open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For more information contact any of the District Offices. (Vendors and offices closed on Thanksgiving)


Council Ranger District Office

2092 Highway 95, Council, ID

(208) 253-0100


New Meadows Ranger District Office

3674 Highway 95, New Meadows, ID

(208) 347-0300


Weiser Ranger District Office

851 E Ninth St., Weiser, ID

(208) 549-4200


McCall Ranger District Office

102 West Lake St., McCall, ID

(208) 634-0400


Payette National Forest Vendors


Weiser:  Ridley's Food and Drug    (208) 549-1332

652 E First St., Weiser, ID

Open:  Everyday 7 a.m. – 11 p.m.


Cambridge:  Jay’s Sinclair   (208) 257-5000

Corner of Hwy 95 and Hwy 71, Cambridge, ID

Open: Everyday 7 a.m. – 8 p.m.


Council:  Farmer’s Supply Co-op    (208) 253-4266

2030 N. Highway 95, Council, ID

Open:  Everyday 6 a.m. – 10 p.m.


McCall:  Albertsons     (208) 634-8166

132 E. Lake Street, McCall, ID

Open:  Everyday 6:30 a.m. -11 p.m.


New Meadows:  C & M Lumber   (208) 347-3648

3625 Walker Ln, New Meadows, ID

Open:  Mon – Sat 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.


Photo of person cutting down a Christmas tree in the forest










Christmas Tree Permit Locations:

Boise National Forest Offices

Interagency Visitor Information Center (208) 373-4007

Sells permits for the Payette and Boise National Forests

1387 South Vinnell Way

(BLM State Office - West of Walmart on Overland Road, Boise)

Hours: M-F - 7:45 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. (Vendors and offices are closed Thanksgiving Day)



The Idaho City Ranger District (208) 392-6681

3833 Highway 21

Idaho City, ID

Hours: M-F 8 a.m. - 4:30p.m

The Idaho City Ranger District may not be open on weekends.

Check with local vendors for weekend hours.


Lowman Ranger District (208) 259-3361

7359 Highway 21

Lowman, ID 83637

Hours: M-F 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.


Emmett Ranger District (208) 365-7000

1805 Highway 16, Room 5

Emmett, ID 83617

Hours: M-F 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.


Cascade Ranger District (208) 382-7400

540 North Main Street 

Cascade, ID 83611

Hours: M-F 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.


Mountain Home Ranger District   (208) 587-7961

3080 Industrial Way

Mountain Home, ID   83647

Hours: M-F 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.



Boise National Forest Vendors


Idaho City Grocery (208) 392-4426

3868 Highway 21

Idaho City, ID  83631   

Open: Everyday, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m.


Tom’s Service/Sinclair (208) 392-4900

243 State Highway 21

Idaho City, ID  83631

Open: Everyday, 5 a.m. - 11 p.m.


Donna’s Place (208) 392-9777

200 Main Street

Idaho City, ID  83631

Open: Everyday, 6 a.m.-10 p.m.


Donna’s Place (208) 392-9666

110 E Granite Street

Placerville, ID 83666

Open: Everyday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.


East Cleveland Beverage (208) 459-6442

2518 E Cleveland

Caldwell, ID 83605

Open: Everyday, 6 a.m. - 10 p.m.


B & W Fuels (208) 365-2291

1900 N. Washington

Emmett, ID  83617

Open: Sun - Thursday, 6 a.m. - 9 p.m.; Fri-Sat, 6 a.m. -10 p.m.


D & B Supply (208) 963-7035

111 State Highway 16

Emmett, ID  83617

Open: Mon - Sat, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Sunday 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.


Valley View Chevron (208) 793-4321  

459 State Highway 55

Horseshoe Bend, ID  83629

Open: Mon-Thursday, – 5:30 a.m. – 10-p.m.; Friday – Sunday 5:30 a.m. – 11 p.m. 


Ray’s Corner Market (208) 793-2391

445 State Highway 55

Horseshoe Bend, ID  83629

Open Everyday: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m.


Garden Valley Chevron (208) 462-3869

P.O. Box 447   

Garden Valley, ID  83622

Beginning Nov.20 – open:  Everyday - 7 a.m. - 9 p.m.