When Chevrolet reached out to me and asked if we wanted to drive their 2019 Chevrolet Silverado High Country truck for a weekend, drive it to a Christmas tree farm and chop down a tree I couldn’t say no!
First of all, I’ve been wanting to do a family adventure to a Christmas tree farm for the past few years. In fact, about three years ago, we drove over an hour to a farm that we thought was a Christmas tree farm, only to arrive and find out it was only a pumpkin farm. (I’ve learned to do better research since then). The farm was closed, by the way.
Second, Charlie loves Chevrolet cars and when I told him it was the Silverado pickup truck, he seemed to be jumping with excitement. Of course, he volunteered to be our driver for the weekend.
Finally, Luke is also obsessed with cars and big trucks, just like Charlie, and I knew Luke would want to jump up and down in the bed of the truck when he saw it. And that’s exactly what he did when the truck arrived.
As an added bonus, Chevy provided us with some tips on chopping and transporting a tree (see below) which we found so helpful since we have never chopped down a tree before.
We normally get our Christmas tree from a local tree lot during the Thanksgiving break. But with the arrival with the twins, Cruz and Levi, it’s been slow going with our regular holiday traditions. So we finally decided on getting our tree last weekend. I was told some of the tree farms closer to Chicago were either out of trees or closed, so we decided to head to Indiana to Dudeck’s Pine Country. Dudeck’s is about an hour and half drive from Chicago (without traffic).
During the drive there, Charlie was explaining all the Silverado truck details to me and Luke. I think Luke was just happy to be driving in a pickup truck rather than listening to Charlie. I was happy there was space for all five of us. The back seat had plenty of room for two infant car seats and a booster for Luke with tons of leg and foot room. The truck drove very smooth, it didn’t feel like we were in a truck. The twins slept throughout the entire drive there and back! It felt more like a luxury truck, if that’s a thing.
Dudeck’s Pine Country For Christmas Trees
I didn’t know what to expect at Dudeck’s Pine Country since I’ve never chopped down a tree before, or even been to a Christmas tree farm. We called ahead of time to make sure there were still trees available and to check if they take credit card. They said yes to both. I was pleasantly surprised when we got there! It was my Christmas tree farm paradise. It was what I had imagined a tree farm to look like. There were so many trees, it was huge! I wanted to take all the pictures we could while there, but Charlie and Luke (and the twins) reminded me that we were there to chop or saw down a tree.
Dudeck’s Pine Country has a little house where you can get hot cider, hot chocolate and small treats. They have a gift shop where you can buy wreaths and other festive items. Santa was even there last weekend!
If you’re considering going to a Christmas tree farm near Chicago, I would put Dudeck’s Pine Country on your list! They make it very easy and simple. Just head over near the gift shop to get a saw (plenty just sitting out for you to grab) and go out and find your tree! You can hike around on foot, or take a ride on a wagon attached to a tractor. When you find your tree and cut down your tree, they also help you carry it back. They use a tree shaker to shake off all the loose stuff and then they wrap it up for you to put on your car. And for us, it was the bed of the Chevrolet Silverado!
I have to admit, it was a little rough with the twins being in the stroller and pushing them around but I’m glad we got out to experience this! We are definitely adding a Christmas tree farm to our list of family traditions. We will be back next year when the twins are more mobile and I can’t wait to snap all the pictures of them exploring with their big brother Luke!
Thank you Chevrolet for the fun family experience and for the great tips on chopping and transporting our Christmas tree! We used them all!
Chevy Holiday Tree Chopping & Transporting Tips
- Be prepared: Always make sure to measure the space in your home so you know exactly what size tree will fit as you pick one out. Don’t forget to leave enough room for the tree topper!
- Stay warm:Bundle up, wear boots and bring a pair of gloves to make sure you stay warm when chopping down your tree. Whether it’s snowing or wet outside, be sure to bring a piece of cardboard to kneel on while you cut your tree down.
- Choose Wisely: Most tree farms have a lot of options to choose from, so take your time and inspect the trees before you pick one out. The National Christmas Tree Association recommends testing out the branches to make sure the tree isn’t too dry or unhealthy.
- Chop Chop: Cut your tree low to the ground and straight across. Have a buddy pull the tree slightly away from the side you’re cutting to prevent the saw from binding and make it easier to cut all the way through.
- Use netting: All trees should be put into netting or a sleeve for easy transport.
- Stump first: Put the stump-end of the tree towards the front of your truck to help mitigate movement within the bed of the truck.
- Tie it down tight: Center your tree in the bed of the truck, loop twine through the integrated tie-down hooks and repeat to cinch with a “figure-8” motion securing the tree. In the 2019 Silverado, there are 12 fixed tie downs stationed throughout the bed of the truck to help you secure the tree from moving around while you drive.
- Tailgate up:The best way to transport your tree is with the tailgate up. If your tree is bigger than your truck bed, you can transport it with the tailgate down – just make sure to tie a red ribbon on the end of the tree so drivers behind you can see it and follow local laws about items extending beyond your vehicle.
- Don’t forget to water your tree:Make sure you put your tree into water immediately when you get home and place it away from heat sources like fireplaces or radiators that can dry it out. The tree will drink up a lot of water the first couple of days so make sure to check on the water level throughout the season. That way you can keep it alive and healthy all holiday season long!