Start planning Christmas tree-cutting expedition

Tree decorating season is right around the corner.

But if a carry-out from the corner tree lot is not your thing, it’s time to plan that trek to the forest.

The Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest is selling permits to cut Christmas trees starting Tuesday and continuing through Dec. 24.

But you might not want to dally before the snow falls. Most trees are reached by narrow, unplowed mountain roads.

Cutting areas are in national forest lands in the eastern parts of Pierce, King, Snohomish, Skagit and Whatcom counties. Maps and information about cutting areas are provided where permits are sold at ranger stations and the Verlot and Glacier Public Service Centers.

Permits are sold daily at REI’s Alderwood Mall store, and Tuesdays through Saturdays at the Outdoor Recreation Information Center in the downtown Seattle REI. Permits are $10 each for a tree height of 12 feet. Permits are $20 for a tree taller than 12 feet.

For more information, go to www.fs.usda.gov/mbs.

Click here to see what it’s like to harvest your own tree, with The Herald’s Mark and Annie Mulligan.

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