Black Hills National Forest Christmas Tree Tags Available

Written by on November 16, 2017

Press Release – The Black Hills National Forest is excited to continue the 4th Grade Free Christmas Tree Program again this holiday season.

Fourth graders are eligible for a FREE Christmas tree permit through the Every Kid in a Park (“Every Kid”) Initiative. Every Kid is a nationwide call to action to build the next generation of conservationists. All fourth graders are eligible to receive a fourth grade pass that allows free access to federal lands and waters across the country for a full year.

In order for students to receive a free Christmas tree permit, they must present a valid 4th Grade pass or paper voucher printed from the Every Kid in a Park website: To obtain the voucher, visit the website, click on the “Get your pass” button and follow the instructions. Print out the paper voucher and bring it with you to a District Office or the Supervisor’s Office on the Black Hills National Forest.

Christmas Tree tags are available November 15 – December 22, 2017 at Black Hills National Forest offices in western South Dakota and northeast Wyoming.

White spruce, ponderosa pine, and western juniper are available and can be cut in many parts of the National Forest.

Each permit is accompanied by a handout with guidance about appropriate tree removal. Trees may not be cut in developed recreation sites, Forest Service administrative sites, active timber sales, the Black Hills Experimental Forest near Rochford, the Black Elk Wilderness, the Beaver Park area near Sturgis or within Spearfish Canyon.

Individual permits cost $10, up to a maximum of five permits is allowed per individual, and the maximum allowable height of cut trees is 20 feet. Permits require that you cut the entire tree, leaving no more than six inches of stump, and that you cut unused branches so they lay flat on the ground.

The adhesive permit tag must be attached before a tree is removed from the cutting area; a citation can be issued for possession of a cut-but-untagged tree, even if a tag is available in person or in your vehicle.

Trees should be placed in water as soon as possible to help keep needles fresh. Once indoors, trees should be placed away from stoves, heaters, or heating ducts. After Christmas, used trees should be disposed of properly as yard waste. Do not dump used trees on national forest land.

There are no refunds for uncut trees or unused permits.  Please note that Forest Service offices will be closed on Thanksgiving Day.  December 22 is the last day permits will be sold at Forest Service offices.  Private vendors (listed below) may sell tags until December 24.

Tags are available by mail from the Forest Supervisor’s Office, 1019 North 5th Street, Custer, SD, 57730. Enclose a check or money order in the amount of $10 for each tree permit, up to a maximum of five trees per individual as well as a self-addressed stamped envelope. The Forest Service will mail tags and cutting instructions.

Permits are available at the following Forest Service locations: 

Forest Supervisor’s Office and

Hell Canyon Ranger District – Custer

1019 North 5th Street Custer, SD 57730

Phone: 605-673-9200

Office Hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


Hell Canyon Ranger District – Newcastle

1225 Washington Boulevard Newcastle, WY

Phone 307-746-2782

Office Hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


Mystic Ranger District

8221 South Highway 16 Rapid City, SD

Phone: 605-343-1567

Office Hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


Northern Hills Ranger District

2014 North Main Street Spearfish, SD

Phone: 605-642-4622

Office Hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


Bearlodge Ranger District

101 South 21st Street Sundance, WY

Phone: 307-283-1361

Office Hours: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


Christmas tree permits may also be available from the following private vendors thru December 24 (where open):

Minitman Too (formerly Buckstop)

611 East Jackson Boulevard

Spearfish SD 57783


Monday thru Sunday 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Accepts check or cash only


Cenex Convenience Store

2030 Lazelle Street

Sturgis SD 57785


Monday thru Saturday, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Sunday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.


Deadwood History & Information Center

3 Siever Street and 501 Main Street

Deadwood SD 57732


Monday thru Sunday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.


Rapid Stop Conoco

20059 West Highway 14

Junction of Highway 14 and I-90

Sundance WY 82729


Monday thru Friday, 5:15 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Saturday and Sunday, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.


Hardware Hank

770 Mountain View Road

Rapid City, SD 57702

Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Saturday, 7:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Sunday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.


Heart of the Hills Exxon C-Store

201 Main St

Hill City, SD 57745


Sun – Thu: 5:00 AM – 11:00 PM

Fri – Sat: 5:00 AM – Midnight


Heart of the West Conoco

632 Main St

Hill City, SD 57745


Sun – Sat: 6:00 AM – 9:00 PM


Custer True Value

833 Mt. Rushmore Road

Custer, SD 57730

Monday – Friday 7:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Saturday – 7:30 a.m. 5:00 p.m.

Sunday – 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.



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