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Free Firewood At Mammoth Cave National Park


An ice storm last January 27 left the crews at Mammoth Cave National Park with more than a little firewood, if you're interested. NPS photo.

While quite a few national parks frown on you hauling trees out of their woods, at Mammoth Cave National Park officials are giving it away.

It's not that Superintendent Patrick Reed is so focused on what goes on underground that he could care less about what goes on above ground, but rather that park crews are still cleaning up from last January's ice storm, which felled more than a few trees.

As a result, Superintendent Reed is more than happy to see you and your pickup truck.

Following the ice storm, park staff moved downed tree trunks away from the roads to make the roads passable. The logs are considered to be excess property, and if left in the park, the wood could become a fire hazard.

“We offer the logs free of charge to the public – if you can haul it, you can have it,” says the superintendent.

The logs are stockpiled in closed areas of the park and at Lincoln Volunteer Fire Department. People interested in collecting the logs and hauling them away must contact the park ranger staff to make arrangements at 270-758-2115.


I think this is a wonderful idea! This should be done at all national/state parks. What better way to avoid a fire hazard?

I wonder if the same thing can be done about the Pine Bark Beetle killed trees throughout the Rockies (Colorado)? I saw whole hills with dead trees on a drive about 2 months ago. They are just sitting there, waiting to catch fire.

I don't know if entire trees can be hauled out (I'm sure they can't) but firewood collection has been legal in many NPS units.

Backpackers have generally been allowed to collect downed wood. I know in Yosemite one can collect downed wood for campfires, except in Yosemite Valley.

Camped at Mammoth Cave last Dec. and they had all the firewood you could use at most campsites. So I guess free firewood is not new to this park. We also took the cave tour. It was packed, all "3" of us had what I guess you could call a personal tour.

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