Passes & Permits
The Forest Service manages the national forests for a number of multiple uses, including recreation, timber, wilderness, minerals, water, grazing, fish and wildlife. Our job is to help you share and enjoy the forest, while conserving the environment for generations to come. To help us meet this goal, certain activities, such as firewood collection, require that you have a permit, while others, such as camping, benefit from passes.
Chippewa National Forest Offices:
- Walker: 218.547.1044
- Deer River: 218.246.2123
- Blackduck: 218.835.4291
Personal Use Fuelwood (Firewood) Permits: Permits are being offered virtually right now. There is no fee for a fuelwood permit at this time. For information on obtaining one, please contact one of our offices below.
Issued by making an appointment by calling one of our offices listed above.
Balsam boughs are a very popular product for crafters on the Forest. Balsam boughs make excellent wreaths for your front door! Permits for harvesting Balsam boughs are available at all Chippewa National Forest offices. $50 minimum permit for 2 tons. Limit 1 permit per company per year.
- Christmas tree permits can be purchased online.
- It is important to carefully read the overview and need-to-know information prior to purchasing the permit. Visitors will also need to set up or login to a Recreation.gov account to complete the transaction.
- Chippewa National Forest Christmas tree permits can also be obtained through the mail by sending your request and payment made to USDA Forest Service ($5.00 per permit) to: Chippewa National Forest, Attn: Christmas Permit, 201 Minnesota Ave. East, Walker, MN 56484
Christmas tree cutting on the Chippewa National Forest has been a holiday tradition for many years. Many families begin their holiday season by cutting their own Christmas tree from the national forests. All you need is a $5.00 permit, sharp axe, thermos of cocoa and a little patience. Away from the holiday rush, families discover the peace of the forest surrounded by winter white. Christmas Tree Permits can now be purchased at https://www.recreation.gov/tree-permits/
Guidelines and Restrictions for collecting your Christmas Trees
One permit is required for each Christmas Tree. Permits are $5.00 each.
Per the Every Kid Outdoors Program, all 4th graders are entitled to one FREE Christmas tree permit with a valid EKO pass redeemed at Recreation.gov or by calling our offices.
- Christmas Tree permits must be validated and displayed when harvesting your tree.
- Cut your Christmas Tree only on National Forest lands. National Forest maps are available for sale.
- Respect road and area closures.
Please do not cut trees:
- On private property.
- Within 150 feet of state highways, picnic areas, campgrounds and other developed areas.
- Within 300 feet of streams and bodies of water.
- Within young tree plantations (Nursery grown seedlings planted for future forests).
- Always let someone know where you plan to cut.
- Bring additional warm clothing, a container of hot liquid, water, lunch or a few snacks as it always takes longer than expected.
- Carry a flashlight, chains, first aid kit, a hatchet or axe, good warm gloves, boots, and rope to tie your tree down.
- When you bring your tree home, immediately cut a 1 inch diagonal piece off the bottom. Place your tree in a container with a mixture of one part sugar to sixteen parts water. Keeping the container filled will help prolong the freshness of your tree.
- Locate your tree so it will not block exits, away from heat.
- Never use lighted candles on a tree or near any evergreen decorations. Use decorations which are noncombustible, such as glass, or which are flame-retardant. Keep natural evergreens and polystyrene decorations away from candles, fireplaces, and other open flames.
Minimum permit: $20 for 80 taps @$0.25/tap Limit 1 permit per person per year Chippewa National Forest land only Permits can be obtained at any Chippewa National Forest office
A Special Use Permit can be granted for specific events or commercial activities. Examples include organizational camps, outfitter and guides, bicycle races, sled dog races or horseback trails on public lands. These permits contain specific terms and conditions that the holder must follow. Before Special Use Permits are issued, the Forest Service must determine that the proposed use complies with all management plans and laws, that there is a demonstrated need for the activity, and that the use is appropriate on national forest system lands. Special Use Permits are a temporary authority.
If you are interested in obtaining a special use permit for an event or commercial purposes, please contact the local district in which the event or business would occur.
America the Beautiful - National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Passes are a suite of annual and lifetime passes that provides U.S. citizens and visitors an affordable and convenient way to access Federal recreational lands. Up to 100% of the Pass program's proceeds are used to improve and enhance visitor recreation services.