Photo by Andrea Hartman

Photo by Andrea Hartman

Eager to jump in to the highly-anticipated holiday season, my roommate and I decided that December 1 would be the day we headed out in search of the perfect Christmas tree.

On Saturday afternoon, a fine Oregon day that threatened rain at anytime, we headed out to Northern Lights Christmas Tree Farm in Pleasant Hill, accompanied by our enlisted help. After scoring a car large enough to swallow my modest hatchback from my parents’ house, we took the back roads through the woods to the farm. We eventually crossed the Willamette River and soon arrived at our destination.

Photo by Andrea Hartman

Photo by Andrea Hartman

Bundled up against the cold, we hopped out of the car and surveyed our options: a barn-housed gift shop, complete with hot drinks, a pancake breakfast fundraiser and a selection of pre-cut trees from which to choose. The U-cut pickings were just a quick hayride away, and included Noble, Grand, Douglas-fir and Scotch Pine. We piled on to the hay seats with a few other families and made our way to the fields.

We compared and contrasted as we combed the rows of Nobles, some tall and slender, others short and plump. Finally we selected a nice five-footer and got down to business. The aforementioned help came in the form of two of our male friends, whom we enlisted for their saw skills and lifting skills, among other things we like about them. Surprisingly to me, it took a mere minute or two to saw through the tree, and off we were, to trot back to the farm with our holiday booty.

The folks at Northern Lights shrink-wrapped our tree while we sucked on free candy canes, and with little effort we nestled the tree into the back of the car. Driving off, I marveled over how simple and easy the whole experience was. No chainsaws needed, just a small handsaw, and the ability to lift a few pounds. Not bad, something I could have done myself. Even more so, it was fun, and sure beat the pressure of looking through a tree lot on a rainy day, bumping into folks as you elbow each other to get to the best tree. Will I go back next year? Definitely.

If you go:
(Don’t let the bleak cell phone camera pictures scare you away, it is indeed a beautiful place.)
-Leave your saw at home, they have extras on hand.
-Wear your boots – the fields are muddy!

To get to Northern Lights (36777 Wheeler Dr.) drive South of I-5, take the Goshen/Exit 188, continue east on Hwy 58 for about 5 miles, turn left on Parkway Road, then right on Wheeler Dr.

For more information on where to find the perfect Christmas tree, read about Carole’s adventure or visit our Attractions section.

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