When I was a kid we had a fake Christmas tree. It was all I knew. It wasn't til I got married that I finally got a real tree.  I love the smell of a Christmas tree in the house and there is something special about cutting your own tree.  Did you know you can cut your own Christmas tree on the Canyon Lakes Ranger District near Red Feather Lakes?


The cutting area is open December 7th through 15th and permits are on sale beginning December 2nd. The cutting area is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.  Smokey Bear will greet people at the cutting area on weekends from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., so make sure to pack your camera. You need the right tools to cut your tree and no chainsaws are allowed.


Permits must be purchased in advance from one of the offices listed below. On the weekends, permits can be purchased (Cash Only) at the cutting area.

  • Canyon Lakes Ranger District office (2150 Centre, Ave., Building E, Fort Collins)
  • Pawnee National Grassland office (660 “O” Street, Greeley, Colo.)
  • Boulder Ranger District office (2140 Yarmouth Avenue, Boulder, Colo.)
  • At the cutting area on the weekends.


The cutting area is located north of Fort Collins, south of Red Feather Lakes. Take Highway 287 north of Fort Collins for 21 miles. At Livermore, turn left onto Red Feather Lakes Road (County Road 74E) and travel approximately 16 miles to the Boy Scout Road (County Road 68C). Turn left on the Boy Scout Road and drive seven miles to the entrance of the cutting area. Signs or U.S. Forest Service personnel will provide directions the rest of the way. Chains or four-wheel drive is required to enter the cutting.

For more information about cutting your own tree, please contact the visitor information office at 970-295-6700.