Olcott farm plants noble firs exclusively

by: OUTLOOK PHOTO: JIM CLARK - Dave Olcott walks through a stand of his Christmas trees with a pole that customers use to measure trees and know how much the tree costs.Now that Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are over, we can all finally take a breather.

But not for long.

The countdown to Christmas has begun, and for many families, that means it’s time to find a Christmas tree.

by: OUTLOOK PHOTO: JIM CLARK - A field of young trees at the Olcott farm that will be ready to sell in about three years.The options for finding a great tree are many: You may pick one up at a tree stand or buy a reusable faux tree, while others prefer to saw down trees straight from the farm.

If you are looking for fresh air and a drive through the country — far away from door buster sales and crowded shopping malls — then consider a trip to Olcott’s Christmas tree farm on Larch Mountain near Corbett.

Most folks living on the extinct volcano east of Corbett know the farm and go back every year to retrieve a tree. But if you’re not from the area, you might never find it (even with your new tablet’s GPS system you waited hours in line to buy).

To get to Olcott’s Christmas tree farm, hidden within a forest of towering timber, head east on the scenic Historic Columbia River Highway up through the rural town of Corbett.

From the Corbett Fire Hall drive 1.6 miles to Larch Mountain Road. Travel 3.3 miles on Larch Mountain to Louden Road. Go another half mile and take a left on Southeast Deverell Road. Drop down over a creek and follow Deverell until the asphalt ends. Stay to the right and go down the gravel driveway about a half mile until you see Christmas trees.

Dave and Dee Olcott started planting “Christmas” trees on their mountain property in 1982. With the help of their son and daughter, the couple continues to raise and harvest exclusively noble fir trees.

by: OUTLOOK PHOTO: JIM CLARK - The Olcotts have been raising Christmas trees since 1982.“Often it’s what people request when they come,” said Dave Olcott, an East County native and former eighth-grade science teacher.

“Noble firs are kind of the Cadillac species of the Christmas tree industry,” Dave said.

The Olcotts’ four-acre operation draws a loyal clientele every year, starting the weekend after Thanksgiving.

When asked what he likes about the Christmas tree business, Dave said he enjoys the entire process from seedling to harvest.

“Like any crop, it’s fun watching them grow,” he said. “The real treat is seeing the people every year.”

Charged by the foot, trees at the farm range from 5 to 13 feet.

Hand saws are provided to cut down your tree, or the Olcotts will gladly assist.

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