Maple Syrup: Nature's Spring Tonic. -- Since 1918

Category: 2006: Season 89 Page 1 of 3

72 Gallons for the 2006 Season

Finished cooking and bottling all the syrup. 72 gallons total for the season. In 2005 we made 50 gallons. An average year is 60 gallons. We collected 3100 gallons of sap giving us a ratio 43:1. All the cleanup remains yet.

Everything is Sticky

By the end of the season everything is sticky. Sap or syrup gets spilled on the floor. The steam swells door and window frames. Gloves get syrup on them. Of course we clean things as we go along but it still seems to accumulate.

All the taps are pulled and all the buckets are back in the building. All the sap is out of the evaporator and into milk cans. We will finish cooking it on the gas burner now because we can not control the heat on the wood fired evaporator. We have filled the evaporator with water and cleaning solution to let it soak for a few days.

Bringing the Season to a Close

The end is near. Its too warm now without freezing nights. We are going to start pulling the taps. There is still sap to finishing cooking.

And Still More Sap!

410 gallons of sap today. Wow! This last week has been quite a run. But there are signs the end of the season is coming. We are seeing more and more dry taps on the trees. And the sap is not as sweet. We are at 2.0 Brix now. By the Rule of 86, that implies a ratio of 43:1, 43 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of syrup. Earlier in the season it we had 3.0 Brix for ratio of 29:1. And people are getting tired too. Its been long days in the woods cooking the sap.

We have 62 gallons bottled now. With today’s sap we will end up with over 70 gallons of finished syrup.

Still Working on that Big Run

Still working on that 600 and 450 gallon run. It takes a lot to boil through over 1000 gallons of sap. There is still about 200 gallons left to boil. Did not collect today, but maybe will collect tomorrow. And that might be the last time to collect. Even if the sap continues to run, we are getting tired. Its been a good season and we will exceed our production goal of 60 gallons.

Bottled 18 quarts so far today and there will be another batch of 10 or so quarts for the day. Our total now is 222 quarts, 55 1/2 gallons.

Another Big Run of Sap

Another big sap run. Today we collected 450 gallons of sap. All the storage tanks are full again. Over the past three days we collected over 1000 gallons of sap. I noted a few days earlier on this web log that we usually get a few days of big runs and it held true this year. With this run we should go over our 60 gallon goal for finished syrup. We have about 50 gallons now, with a lot of sap in the evaporator and in the storage tanks. 50 gallons was our total of finished syrup for last season, so we will exceed that. 12 quarts were bottled today.

We have had to filter our syrup twice. Not sure why, but with only one pass through the pressure filter the syrup is not sparkling clear. Its a bit more work to filter twice, but the results are worth it.

It looks like we will loose our freezing nights this week which will bring a halt to the season.

Burned a Lot of Wood Today

A long day cooking sap. Boiled through about 370 gallons from that 600 picked up yesterday. About 230 left to finish, but that will wait until tomorrow. It takes a lot of wood to keep the evaporator going. We use mostly the limb wood which burns hot, but fast so we are firing up every fifteen minutes or so. No sap today as it was cloudy, rainy, snowy, sunny, cloudy, windy and generally a March day with a lot of different weather. But we need a day or so here to get caught up so its OK there was no new sap. Bottled 22 quarts and 1 pint for the day.

Big Sap Run; 600 Gallons

Collected 600 gallons of sap today. A very big run! All the storage tanks are full right now. Quite a few buckets were running over. We don’t expect sap tomorrow, which is good because it will take a while to boil this down. With this run, the season could be coming to a close soon. If we look at the numbers, our production goal is 60 gallons. Well, when we have boiled down all this sap we would have about 57 gallons. So unless we have an above normal season, we will be coming close to the end of the season.

Bottled 13 quarts, 1 pint today. Total finished syrup is now 168 quarts, 42 gallons.

21 Quarts Yesterday; 21 Quarts Today

As noted yesterday, we collected 300 gallons of sap. We also bottled 21 quarts of finished syrup. Stayed in the woods until about 7:30 cooking. Back today to finish up. Emptied the storage tanks by 4:30 pm. And bottled another 21 quarts. This gives us 156 quarts (39 gallons) of finished syrup total for the season so far. If we take a “normal” season as 60 gallons of finished syrup, we are now about 2/3 of the way to our production goal. We expect to collect tomorrow again.

More Sap Today

Collected 300 gallons of sap today. It was a cloudy day, but the temperature was up to the mid-30’s so the trees were dripping. Had help come over by 1:00 pm to start collecting. There was some ice in the buckets because it was cold last night. There will be another batch of syrup to finish tonight. Not sure on the amount yet. The next few days are also forecast to be cloudy, but freezing at night and mid-30’s during the day. We expect the sap will flow.

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