Friday, February 23, 2024

Personal use firewood cutting program now open

Posted

WENATCHEE - Woodcutters are now able to obtain a free permit to cut firewood on the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest. Those who receive free use firewood permits may use the firewood for cutting, manufacturing, or other processing, but not for resale.

“This is the second year we have participated in this free permit program which benefits people who rely on firewood as their primary heat source. It not only benefits local woodcutters, but also allows us to dispose of material that otherwise would have a cost to burn or remove,” said Forest Supervisor Kristin Bail.

Woodcutters need to obtain a free permit, firewood tags, map, and also have a copy of the regulations on hand when cutting and transporting firewood. The free use firewood permits and tags will be available at Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest Ranger District offices beginning May 1 and are valid through December 31. Permits will also be available at local vendors  in the Methow Valley and Ellensburg; vendors will charge a $2 administrative fee per permit. 

 Procedures for issuing free personal-use or commercial use permits will vary by office, so please check to verify hours and permit purchase options for each location. People will need to provide their driver’s license to obtain a permit and the permit holder must be present during firewood gathering on the National Forest.

Free personal use firewood collection is allowed in all designated areas authorized for firewood collection on the forest which are marked on the woodcutting map, which will be provided when firewood tags are distributed.

 Generally, woodcutters may cut wood lying on the forest floor and standing dead trees, except wildlife habitat trees. Be aware that western larch, also known as tamarack, drops its needles and may look dead, but isn’t. No woodcutting is allowed in Congressionally designated Wilderness areas.

Firewood permit requirements for the Naches Ranger District are different from the rest of the forest. Special rules and conditions exist which limit the dates of the firewood cutting season on the Naches Ranger District. Please visit the Naches Firewood information page for details.

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