Firewood permits available at Mississinewa

Nothing heats like wood and many prefer to harvest their own instead of purchasing. Photo provided by author

Each winter many people inquire about places where they can collect firewood, for good reason. With rising energy costs, heating with wood is seeing a resurgence. Since the beginning of time, fire has been responsible for our very existence. Even today, whether bonfires, woodstoves, fire places or outdoor boilers, seasoned wood continues to be a source of renewable heat. And nothing warms the body (and soul) like the heat from a crackling fire.

If you decide to supplement the heat in your house by safely burning firewood you have two options. You either buy it or harvest it yourself. But for those who collect it themselves, finding suitable wood can be an obstacle. This has just been made easier.

Some prefer to harvest it themselves for the diminished costs as well as the healthy exercise it provides. “When you get wood on your own it heats you twice,” says Jeff Dittmar, who heats his house with a woodstove. “It warms you when you cut it and again when you burn it.”

For people like Dittmar, the public is invited to cut certain downed trees at Mississinewa Reservoir. Trees allowed for cutting have fallen as a result of natural causes or have been dropped by reservoir property staff. The trees are located along roadsides or in public areas such as campsites or picnic areas. That means access to them should be fairly easy.

Permit sales and cutting begin January 2 and end Feb. 24. Cost is $10 for each pickup load. The money will be used for restoration efforts including the planting of more trees.

Permits will be available at the property office from 9 am to 3 pm, Monday through Friday, and must be obtained for each load. Cutting will not be allowed on observed holidays or weekends. Firewood obtained from Mississinewa is for personal use only and cannot be sold. Unfortunately the ban on transporting ash between Indiana counties is no longer in effect because the emerald ash borer insect is now widespread throughout Indiana.

More information on the wood cutting opportunity can be obtained by contacting the property office at (765) 473-6528.

John Martino
Martino is a well-known outdoor writer throughout Indiana and has served as longtime outdoor columnist for the Kokomo Tribune newspaper. Martino has won numerous awards for both his writing and his service to youth, conservation and the community. He recently retired as Superintendent of Parks and Recreation for the City of Kokomo and now works as Ivy Tech Executive Director for Facilities for the Kokomo region.

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