It’s That Time of Year Again – Part 2

Sap runs when the days are warm and the nights dip below freezing.  The time of year fluctuates a bit but last week we decided it was time to tap.  The weatherman was predicting warmer day temperatures and the trends looked promising.

trekking into the woods to tap maple trees

With our sap buckets clean and ready to go, the first order of business was to haul all the equipment into the woods: buckets, taps, lids, drill, and hammer.  The snow is pretty deep this year and snowshoes are in order.  But even then the walking was tough.  Each step sank about a foot, especially carrying the weight of buckets and all.  After several trips, we had nice packed paths to the trees and buckets ready to install by each one.  Monte made sure we didn’t get lost.

drilling the holetap in, bucket hung

Now we were ready to drill holes to insert the metal taps.  Holes are drilled to a specific depth and diameter to fit the taps.  Once the holes were drilled, we hammered the tap into the hole and hung the bucket on the little hook.  It was a good sign to see sap flowing right away and to hear the sweet sound of “ping, ping, ping” into the bottom of the bucket.  Adding a lid completes the job.  Covering the bucket helps keep out bark and other debris, and keeps rain and snow from diluting the sap too much.

our "sugar bush"

Now we just wait for the sun to warm and the sap to flow.

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