Frequently Asked Questions


[Photo]: People



1. How do I find a job with the Forest Service?

For any questions related to EMPLOYMENT, please start in our employment section of the web site. This includes career advice, fire jobs, and summer hires.

All Forest Service jobs are listed in the USAJOBS database at To search ONLY for Forest Service jobs, start at and choose "USDA, Forest Service."


2. How do I get a Golden Access/Golden Age/Golden Eagle Pass?

Golden Access passes are for blind and physically disabled visitors. Golden Access passes must be obtained in person. Get details about the Golden Access pass.

Golden Age passes are for visitors aged 62 and older. Golden Age passes must be obtained in person. Get details about the Golden Access pass.

Golden Eagle passes are for everyone else. Get details about the Golden Eagle pass.

Specific details about each pass, the cost, and instructions on getting a pass are available in the passes and permits section of our web site.


3. Does the Forest Service give away free trees?

We recommend you check with your State Forester for more information/grants, etc.

Also, each state has a Forest Service Nursery that supplies "source-identified, locally-adapted" seedlings to private landowners. You can locate the nursery for your state on our National Nursery Directory.


4. How do I make reservation to stay in Forest Service cabins or lookout towers?

Forest Service lodging sources include unique Cabin and Lookout Tower rentals. To make a reservation, you must contact directly the location where you wish to stay. There is a list of locations that offer cabin and lookout tower rentals.


5. I have a problem or question about a tree on my property. Can someone help me?

The USDA Forest Service does not provide this service, but many State Foresters do. Contact your State Forester to see if they provide this service. You can find your State Forester online.


6.How do I sell products and services to the Forest Service? Are there contracts on which I can bid?

If you sell a product or service, the best thing to do is get in the Federal Supply Service Program through the General Services Administration (GSA). The GSA is the business manager and purchasing agent for the federal government.

To bid on contracts throughout the federal, start at FedBizOpps. Or, find solicitations specific to the Forest Service.


7. How do I get Smokey Bear or Woodsy Owl to appear at my event?

If you are not in the Washington, D.C. area, contact the National Forest nearest you, or call (202) 205-4995 during normal office hours.

In the Washington, D.C. area, fax your request letter to (202) 690-5658 or mail it with at least three weeks advance notice to USDA Forest Service, Attn: Conservation Education, PO Box 96090, Washington, DC 20090-6090.

Your request letter must include:

  1. Which figure you are requesting, Smokey or Woodsy
  2. Name of the event
  3. Purpose of the event
  4. Main audience and expected attendance
  5. Date
  6. Time
  7. Location
  8. How many hours the figure is requested to perform
  9. The kind of presentation needed (just an appearance or an appearance combined with an educational activity or talk).
  10. Contact person and phone number during working hours
  11. Do you have someone willing to wear the costume?


8. I want to scatter burial ashes of a loved one. Can I do this in a national forest?

There are no rules or regulations within the Forest Service addressing this issue. However, some states (California) regulate or prohibit the scattering of ashes. It is important you check local and state regulations and laws pertaining to this activity.


9. Can I plant a memorial tree in a national forest?

The Forest Service "Plant-A-Tree" Program permits individuals and groups to donate money for the planting of trees on National Forests. The trees may be planted to memorialize loved ones or to commemorate special events such as births, weddings, or anniversaries.

For a suggested minimum donation of $10, which pays for 10-15 seedlings, donors receive a certificate acknowledging their gift. If desired, the name of the person in whose honor the donation is made will appear on the certificate. The trees, planted mostly in large plantations, will not be indivually identified by donor. Smaller (or larger) donations will be acceptable in most cases. Business groups may participate in the program as long as their participation is non-commercial.

Donations may be made in person and by mail at all Forest Service offices. Forest Service offices are listed in the telephone directory under "U.S. Government, Department of Agriculture."

There are two other similar programs.

The American Forests group plants memorial trees in national forests in honor of loved ones. Find out more about the Memorial Trees campaign.

The Arbor Day Foundation plants Trees in Memory and Trees in Celebration.

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