Firewood Collecting Permits

As the impacts from COVID-19 continue to be felt across the country, the US Forest Service is committed to providing services on public lands and doing what is possible for those in need. The Inyo National Forest is delaying the personal use fuelwood season until June 1, 2021. The season will be extended, however, through the end of November, weather permitting, and permits will remain the same price.

Woodcutters are required to hold a permit and follow the associated regulations within that permit, along with an Inyo National Forest Personal Use Fuelwood Map. Permits will be available for issuance beginning May 1, 2021. Fuelwood permits will still be $15.00 per cord with a two-cord minimum purchase. A total of up to 6 cords of firewood for personal use is permitted per calendar year. A cord is the amount of tightly piled wood in a stack four feet high by four feet wide by eight feet long.

Methods for requesting an Inyo NF Personal Use Fuelwood Permit:

Send an email: (payment by credit/debit card only – you will be contacted by telephone to complete the transaction)

Mail-in requests: Inyo National Forest Attn: fuelwood permit, 351 Pacu Lane Suite 200 Bishop, CA 93514 (payment sent by check or money order)

Each request shall include your name, physical address, mailing address, phone number, driver’s license number and number of cords requested. Permits will be returned to requesters by hardcopy mail. Please expect that it will take 7-10 days to receive your permit.

The Inyo National Forest will continue to institute shut down days (for chainsaw use) based upon the daily Project Activity Level. Permit holders can call (760) 873-2555 Option 2 for information on activity levels.


2021 Firewood Map in English or 2021 Firewood Map in Spanish

Shut Down Days

In an effort to be consistent with other Forest activities, we will be shutting down firewood cutters on VERY HIGH and EXTREME fire danger days. On these days you will not be allowed to use a chainsaw for either all or part of the day. For information on Forest closures in effect, call the pre-recorded message number: 760-873-2555.

It is your responsibility to understand and adhere to the following regulations:

  • Collect down and dead wood only. No standing trees may be cut, pushed or pulled down.
  • Cutting on a previously felled tree is prohibited except in designated or signed areas, such as logging or thinning areas.
  • Collect only in designated areas as shown on the Map: "OPEN--May 1 thru October 31"
  • Load Tags and Permits cannot be sold, transferred or given away. The numbers on your Tags must agree with the Tag numbers listed on your permit.
  • Carry your Firewood Collecting Permit, Map and Tags with you whenever you are collecting wood.
  • Cutting wood is allowed between 6:00 am and 8:00 pm only.
  • Date and time (including am & pm) must be punched out on the Tags attached to the load of wood.
  • One Tag for each 1/4 cord, or portion thereof, must be firmly attached to the firewood where it is visible from the rear before moving the vehicle.
  • Validated Tags must remain attached to the wood until at least 30 days after the season closed. Tags may NOT be reused.
  • Each person over 18 years of age in a given household may purchase a Permit for up to 6 cords of wood. Total Tags issued per household may not exceed 12 cords.
  • A shovel or fire extinguisher must be kept available at all times when cutting firewood.

Spark Arresters Are Required! The Forest Service and the State of California require wood collectors to equip their chainsaws and other internal combustion equipment with spark arresters. A spark arrester screen should be cleaned with a wire brush after 8 hours of use in order to keep it safe and functional. A screen should be replaced as soon as there is an increase (burning out) or decrease (clogging) in opening size.

When starting a chainsaw:
  • Move at least 15 feet from the fueling spot to avoid gasoline vapors.
  • Keep a shovel or a 14-oz fire extinguisher nearby.

While Using the Chainsaw:

  • Around the downed log, clear away brush, grass and needles that could easily catch fire.
  • Do not use a saw that is backfiring or overheating.
  • Do not leave an idling saw unattended.

When Adding Fuel To The Chainsaw:

  • Stay far away from lighted cigarettes and open flames.
  • Stop the saw and let it cool for 5 minutes before adding fuel.
  • Set the hot saw on bare soil or rock, far from combustible materials such as wood chips and pine needles.

When Building A Warming Fire:

  • Obtain a California Campfire Permit from any Inyo National Forest Ranger Station or Visitor Center.
  • Clear the soil of combustible material in a circle 10-feet wide around the fire.
  • Make certain the fire is completely out by using water and stirring before you leave it.