The San Juan Mountain Association harvests white firs from local forests to thin overgrowth, reduce wildfire fuels, and raise revenues during its annual Christmas Tree sale. Sponsored by Serious Texas BBQ and Downs, McDonough, Cowan and Foley, LLC
Harvesting a Christmas tree from the National Forest may seem counterintuitive to conservation efforts, but that's exactly what the San Juan Mountain Association's annual Christmas tree sale is all about. You're watching the Local News Network, brought to you by Serious Texas Bar-B-Q, and the law firm of Downs, McDonough, Cowan, and Foley. I'm Wendy Graham Settle. If you're looking for a perfectly shaped, fluffy Christmas tree, or perhaps one with a bit more of a locally grown personality, you can find both at the San Juan Mountains Association Christmas tree lot at the corner of Camino Del Rio and College Drive. Now in its eighth year, the annual Christmas tree sale is one of the association's of biggest fundraisers of the year. The sale offers both perfectly shaped, farm-raised Balsam firs from Wisconsin, or you can buy one of 350 white furs that 65 volunteers harvested from the San Juan National Forest in November. The locally harvested trees do have a bit of a Charlie Brown Christmas tree vibe to them. They aren't perfect, but if you buy one, you're also supporting one of the association's most important conservation programs.
What we love about our local trees, one is their personality and their uniqueness, but also the fact that this is part of a concerted forest health effort. By going in selecting trees that we think would, you know, liven up a home, we're also thinning out really highly clustered areas where, in the event of a wildfire, these would serve as ladder fuel and essentially make any wildfire that much more catastrophic. So by going in and thinning these trees out, we are directly reducing fire hazards in our forests.
Weber says the Christmas tree sale is more important than ever, especially with the exponential increase in users on the national forest.
So we have seen just tremendous growth on our public lands for recreational users. We have, in partnership with the San Juan National Forest, the Rio Grande National Forest, and GMUG, the Grand Mesa Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forests, provide visitor information, help educate people on recreating responsibly and leaving no trace, and that costs money. And so this is a wonderful way for us to raise funds to help our education and stewardship efforts.
The Christmas tree lot is open from noon to 6:00 PM, Sundays through Fridays, and from 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM on Saturdays. Trees costs about $10 a foot. The lot will be open through December 19th or until all the trees are sold. Visit sjma.org for more information. Thanks for watching this edition of the Local News Network. I'm Wendy Graham Settle.