Maple Syrup Saga

It just goes to show you, you never know what surprises are in store with you each sugar season. Whereas a few days ago, we thought we would fall short of our seasonal average by roughly 25%. However, with the excellent sapping conditions over the last few days and taking the time to clean the equipment we’re back making medium grad maple syrup and, in addition, we expect we’ll reach our seasonal average of about 35 gallons with 175 taps.

Considering the recent excellent sap flows (both clarity and volume) we decided to not to remove the bags/spiles yesterday extending the season for one additional day today. So, with the afternoon gather today, we’ll remove the 135 bags and spiles. Remember, Judy and I took down and removed 40 buckets and spiles on Tuesday. We cleaned the 40 buckets yesterday with hot water and bleach while we boiled to get a bit of a head start on the clean-up tasks.

Yesterday while Joan tended the evaporator (once fired up it can’t be left) with the help of Maureen (the “Machine”), Kevin, Judy (the faithful regular), Afrika and Heidi (the supervisors) we gathered another 80 gallons of clear as water sap. By the time we had boiled off that 80 gallons along with the 165 gathered the evening before we added another 5 gallons of delicious medium grade syrup to our total to date. A ratio of roughly 50 gallons of sap to one gallon of syrup. We are tired, but, as the old times say and my buddy, Jim always says, “make hay (syrup) while the Sun shines (sap flows)”!

With the anticipated warm temperatures we will definitely take down the remaining 140 bags and spiles with the final gather this afternoon. The sap ran into the night last night and we expect another decent run today. So, our plan is to gather as late in the day as possible, say around 5-5:30 pm to get every last drop of 2019 sap and have enough daylight to remove the spiles.  

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