Select Page


November 30, 2020


Angie Poss, Assistant Commissioner of Communications


State Land Office Offering Low-Cost Christmas Tree Cutting and Sand Gathering Permits  

SANTA FE, NM – The New Mexico State Land Office today announced low-cost Christmas tree cutting and sand gathering permits on state trust land in advance of the upcoming holiday.

Christmas tree cutting permits are available for $10, and the permitted area is located East of Black Lake and South of Angel Fire. A limit of one tree, no taller than 15 feet, is allowed per permit.

Sand gathering permits, meant to allow individuals to gather sand to fill farolitos, are $5 and allow for the removal of up to 20 gallons of sand per permit, which is enough to fill approximately 100 farolito bags. Seven areas have been made available across the state for sand gathering purposes.

Interested individuals can visit the agency’s website to download and return a permit application, find maps and directions, along with all other important details regarding the permits.

“As we move into this holiday season, we are pleased to offer low-cost permits to help individuals and families honor two of New Mexico’s long-held holiday traditions,” Commissioner of Public Lands Stephanie Garcia Richard said. “My family has applied for our Christmas tree permit, and we look forward to adventuring out to the beautiful state trust land near Black Lake to cut our tree. The added benefit of getting your tree or sand from state trust land is that the nominal permit fee goes directly back into the community by supporting New Mexico public schools.”

Sand gathering locations have been spread out across the state in the following areas:

  • Santa Fe
  • Albuquerque
  • Silver City
  • Las Cruces
  • Carlsbad area
  • Bloomfield area
  • Socorro area

Permit applications and payments must be received no later than December 16, 2020, and the permits are valid through December 25, 2020. Both Christmas tree and sand gathering permits are intended for personal use and not for commercial sale. Individuals who receive a permit are required to bring their own equipment for tree cutting or sand gathering.

Visit this link to download and return a permit application, find maps and directions, along with all other important details regarding the permits.

Under the leadership of Commissioner of Public Lands Stephanie Garcia Richard, the New Mexico State Land Office has seen back-to-back years of revenue over $1 billion. Over 13 million acres of state trust land are leased for a variety of uses, including ranching and farming, renewable energy, business development, mineral development, and outdoor recreation. The money earned from leasing activity supports 22 beneficiaries – New Mexico public schools, seven universities and colleges, the School for the Deaf, the School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, three hospital, water and land conservation projects, and public building construction and repair.