When it comes to Christmas trees, I am a firm believer that there are two types of people in this world: Those who put up a fake tree every year and those who insist on having a live tree in their home for the holidays.

Personally, I like the thought of a live Christmas tree. However, the daunting task of going to get the tree, stringing up the lights, and then finally hanging the ornaments seems like a bit too much. A fake Christmas tree it is for our household.

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I admire the families who take time to have a live Christmas tree in their homes every year. It is a great tradition. Even more so if you take the initiative to drive into Colorado's Rocky Mountains and cut the Christmas tree down yourself.

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One of these years, I will cut down our tree for Christmas ... just not this year.

If you are planning on making the trek up to the mountains to cut your tree down, there are some things you need to know before you go.

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What do I need to do to cut a Christmas tree in Colorado?

For starters, you are going to need a permit to your Christmas tree down.

These permits need to be obtained before you cut the tree, too. Permits for certain areas in the state of Colorado will be available on certain dates, and you can only harvest a tree from the designated area.

Permits for harvesting a Christmas tree in the Aparaho and Roosevelt National Forest area will be available for purchase starting on Nov. 9, 2023. Tree permits will cost $20 per tree, and the maximum number of trees that can be harvested per household is five.

Tips for cutting down a Christmas tree in Colorado

Here are a few helpful tips from Recreation.gov while cutting down your Christmas tree this holiday season:

  • Take the entire tree at ground level. No topping or taking a portion of the tree is permitted.
  • Permits must be displayed on your dashboard or easily viewable while harvesting the tree.
  • Pack out all trash.
  • Bring tools such as a tape measure to ensure fit, a tarp to cover the tree during transport, rope or straps to secure the tree, and a hand saw to cut the tree down.

For more information on cutting down your Christmas tree this year in the Aparaho and Roosevelt National Forest, see Recreation.gov.

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