Your Guide to the Forester Profession in LOTRO

LOTRO Forester Profession guide by FibroJedi

The Forester Profession in LOTRO is a great addition to your chosen crafting vocations for your character. While you can chop up wood, that’s really only the starting point. The materials you gather and process as a Forester feeds at least two crafting vocations, improving your ability to gear yourself by what you make. Come swing an axe with me. No, not at me, with me!

What is the LOTRO Forester Profession?

A Forester collects wood from the wild for you or others to use in crafting. It is what you might understand to be a Gathering Vocation.

But it is also a Processing Profession. With it you can turn logs into boards and hides into leathers.

And since the Combe Forester Event was introduced, the Forester can craft tools for itself.

What Crafting Materials Can a Forester Gather?

I totally wanted to ask “how much wood can a woodchuck-chuck”? But I won’t, even though I kinda did.

Anyway, the main resource LOTRO Foresters collect is Wood. This should come as no surprise!

But before you try to chop down trees, the wood you collect comes from fallen branches on the ground.

But fallen branches may not only yield logs.

Special and Rare Crafting Ingredients

Other items that you can find while bein’ a lumberjack are:

  • Shards: e.g.Sapphire Shard Sapphire ShardExternal Link (Opens in New Window/Tab): these are often needed for certain single-use crafting recipes. In later zones, Shards are replaced with other similar items. But in all cases, the drop rate is very low.
  • Other “Critical” Items: Flax FibresExternal Link (Opens in New Window/Tab) (for Tailors) and ResinsExternal Link (Opens in New Window/Tab) for Woodworkers. These increase the chance of making a higher-quality item while crafting.

Both “Flax Fibre” and “Resin” resources change names for higher crafting tiers. The most common two seem to be “bark” and “tar”. After the “Supreme” tiers of Woodworker and Tailor, there is no longer one item per profession, but one item which can be used in either. An example is Walnut Bark.

If you need one of the rarer components and none are on the Auction House, you can obtain these from Skirmish Camps. Look for the Crafting vendorExternal Link (Opens in New Window/Tab) (a ingenius and totally encoded name, don’t you think?).

How to Unlock the Forester Profession

Jill Brushwood - Mistress of Apprentices - Combe Craft Hall (Bree-land)

As with all LOTRO Crafting Vocations, you unlock Forester by speaking with a Master or Mistress of Apprentices.

Choose “Forester”, then complete the tutorial. Accepting this tutorial means you receive your first Inferior Forester’s Axe so you can get chucking wood. Sorry, chopping wood!

I Already Have 3 Professions!

Assuming one of those is not Forester, but you still want it, you have two options (currently).

  1. Drop a Vocation:
    If you have three professions and you click “Forester”, you will get the option to drop one of your current vocations. You will lose all progress on the one you replace so please don’t do that on a whim!
  2. Use a Different Character
    Free-to-Play accounts have at least two character slots. Get one of your other characters to train and chop wood. Then you can pass materials between characters using your mailbox or other LOTRO Storage options.

Tracking Resources

Although you have to be in the vicinity of a gathering node to detect it, being a Forester gives you the ability to see fallen branches on your minimap.

Activating Track Wood Track Wood will show a resource on the radar and/or a blue arrow pointing you towards one

Going on a gathering spree is a great excuse to roam around a region of LOTRO and take in the sights. So don’t just look at the ground. Even if you’re gathering in the Shire!

Browse Explorer Deeds →

A tracked resource shows a blue arrow on the minimap.

How To Do Forester Crafting

Although I called it a Gathering profession, that’s only half of its function. The other half is readying materials for other LOTRO Crafting Professions. This means you are making something as a Forester, not just collecting stuff!

As a reminder, I said that Foresters process logs and hides into boards and leathers.

Forester Crafting Tools

There are different types of tools available to you:

Basic

Initially, the quickest tools to acquire are from NPCs. This starts with your free Inferior Forester’s Axe.

But, once you’re through the tutorial, collect a Forester’s Axe from a Supplier NPC for just 2×Silver Coin. Select “Tools” from the drop-down to find them all much quicker. These are better than the “Inferior” set because they last longer before you need to repair it.

Crafted Tools

Forester Event
Join in the LOTRO Forester Event and you can build your own tool. This includes modifying the appearance of your axe and hide-stretcher.

It takes a while to build up the ribbons, but as there’s no rush, it doesn’t matter.

Metalsmith
Metalsmiths can craft multitools. These have stat improvements such as decreased chopping time. If you don’t have a Metalsmith crafter, befriend one.

Superior Tools of the Expert Explorer is a crafted toolkit.

LOTRO Store

There are a couple of crafting tools available through the LOTRO Store.

Universal Toolkit: LOTRO Points 150
You can purchase these from the LOTRO Store and some expansions include them too. They increase crafting critical chance (but not on ‘gathering professions’ like Forester).

These are account-bound, so can be used by all your characters on a server and provide benefits to all crafting types. Foresters see chopping time reduced by 3 seconds.

Enduring Toolkit: LOTRO Points 450
So called because it has a greater durability rating (100) than the standard Universal Toolkit (45). Though durability only matters if you’re not VIP (Subscriber).

The other advantage, for the rushed gatherer, is that the Enduring one reduces chopping time of wood by 4½ seconds.


Where’s My Hide-stretcher?

You have a magic one! Sorta. Though you only ever have a “Forester’s Axe” (or multi-tool) equipped, you already have the “tool” for processing hides. It will just appear out of thin air once you begin to work on those eight bajillion hides you’ve been hoarding.

Here’s the Ornate Forester’s axe alongside the hide-stretcher.


Which Crafting Facility for Foresters?

To be able to chop those logs (and hang around in Inns afterwards), you need to find a Workbench crafting facility.

While most crafting areas have all facilities, that’s not always the case. Sometimes you may only find forges, for example.

Out and About? Look for Farmland

If you’re not in a town with a crafting facility, you may be able to find farmland. This is handy to know because sometimes farmland has a Workbench next to it.


Making Stronger Boards

Some Woodworker recipes may require you to provide stronger boards. The example on the WikiExternal Link (Opens in New Window/Tab) page on Journeyman Forester is Solid Ash Boards.

These are made with:

  • 2×Thin Ash Boards
  • 1×Lump of Wax (24×Copper Coin from a Supplier vendor)

So your process is: Convert 4 × Ash Logs to 2 × Thin Ashboards, then take those along with the wax to make 1 × Solid Ash Board.

Making Stronger Leathers

The process for making stronger leathers for Tailor recipes is the same.

In this case, we’re making Glazed Medium Leathers:

  • 2×Brushed Medium Leathers
  • 1×Lump of Wax (24×Copper Coin from a Supplier vendor)

So your process is: Convert 4 × Medium Hides to 2 × Medium Leathers, then take those along with the wax to make 1 × Glazed Medium Leather.


Crafting XP

As with other making skills, the Forester Profession levels up using Crafting XP Crafting XP. And you also have Proficiency and Mastery levels too.

The only thing to note is this: Crafting XP Boost Events do not apply to gathering skills. I’ve no idea why, really.


Achieving Critical Success

In both these cases, you have a 5% chance of producing a higher number of items if you have a “critical hit”. This means, an invisible dice rolls each time and if it falls in whatever the 5% range is, you’ve got a critical success.

This unlocks once you have proficiency in the Forester Profession.

The Forester Event opens up the first upgrades on this 5% I’ve seen. As you develop your tool, you can increase it beyond 5%. Even the LOTRO Store toolkits do not do that.

Which Professions Go With Forester?

The main two crafting professions to pick up alongside Forester are Tailor and Woodworker.

Tailor

Hides are not “gathered” by a gathering vocation. Not-so-shockingly, these are from defeated animals.

Pairing Forester with Tailor make it a natural process and lets you make some armour for yourself, or even some pieces to put in your Wardrobe to make outfits.

Woodworker

Your processed logs can be used by Woodworkers in the making of wooden weapons and maybe the occasional decoration here or there.

Other examples of items made by woodworkers are Minstrel instruments and Warden Carvings.

So a Forester’s work contributes very broadly to other professions.

Should I Use Forester for my Class?

Again, assuming you intend for the Forester to gear itself, then the answer is either “probably” or “maybe”!

Light Armour Class

Example Light Armour Class - Minstrel

Probably: Forester feeding into Tailor makes your armour pieces. And if you also have Woodworker than you can create some of the Light Armour class’ weapons – e.g. staves, 1-handed clubs and instruments.

Alternative: Prospector to feed into Jeweller.

Medium Armour Class

Example Medium Armour Class - Hunter

Probably: this is the strongest case especially for the likes of Hunter and Warden. Both those classes use medium armour. Hunters use bows and can use 1-handed clubs, meaning you can definitely fill the armour and weaponslots if you pick Forester+Tailor+Woodworker.

Wardens also wear medium armour and use javelins which can be wooden. Spears are usually the Blacksmith’s job, though. But as we’ve already mentioned the Warden Carving class-item is made by Woodworkers.

Heavy Armour Class

Example Heavy Armour Class - Guardian

Maybe or Probably Not: The only armour item you can typically make with Forester-gathered materials is a cloak and only a few weapons come from Woodworker.

Well, Heavy Armour classes can wear Light and Medium Armour, but then why be a heavy class?

Only pick up Forester for your Heavy-armour class if you have Armourer and Prospector elsewhere.

Bonus Point: Bulk Recipes

If you’re not a VIP, where your Subscriber’s Jug speeds up your crafting time, you may find getting a bulk recipe or two helps.

Available from Skirmish Camps, they enable you to process…bulk materials in the same length of time it takes to process one.

The downside is that if you were hoping for critical success, you have an “all or nothing” scenario. Overall the critical chance is exactly the same, but you’re less likely to have zero criticals on normal recipes, just because the dice is rolled more times.

Where to Get Bulk Recipes

Anyway, all you need are the right amounts of Marks Marks (and Medallions Medallions later) to pick up the recipes from the Crafting vendor in Skirmish Camps.

TL;DR Is the Forester Profession Right For You?

The LOTRO Forester profession is versatile and highly useful. But only if you play classes that are not heavy-armour. Though, of course, there’s always a market for something – but I’m the wrong person to ask about the Auction House!

That said, you may find some guild recipes deeper into the game that you may want to use as a cosmetic. But at the beginner’s stage, you need not worry about that!

So, have a think about all your characters and which crafting they do. Only then decide if the forester profession is right for you. Feel free to ask questions over the socials to me or the #LOTRO/#LOTROfamily community before you decide, though. Regardless, enjoy your time in Middle-Earth, and I’ll see yous soon.

LOTRO Forester Event Guide | Combe Crafting Event | I'm a Lumberjack!

About the Author

Fibro Jedi
Fibro Jedi

I have been playing MMOs for about ten years and began writing guides to The Lord of the Rings Online in 2017. I've only been creating content about Final Fantasy XIV since 2022, but I am glad for the mix. My current games include LOTRO, FFXIV and the occasional Palia session too.

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