Thu Mar 08, 2007 3:22 pm

Anybody making maple syrup yet? The season is late here (VT), delayed by severely cold weather this week and deep snow (3-4 feet in the woods. Not kidding.). Another year where we won't be using the Cub to gather, since the snow is so deep. Nonetheless, can't wait to fire the evaporator and get some fritters!

Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:19 pm

Rusty-- Most of the producers in this area(central NH)tapped out last week when we had 3 nice warm afternoons in a row. One told me she had about 200 gallons of sap that's quite stiff at this point in time. Forecast is for nice sugaring temps starting saturday, so we'll keep our fingers crossed!

Fri Mar 09, 2007 12:55 am

I'm sugarin'.

Tapping here is late as well. There was the snowstorm the day we usually tap, Feb. 14, but this year is a week later. So far we have had one OK run and one mediocre run. At work we put out 540 buckets. Our big festival is coming up in a week. Based upon the weather forecast, this weekend it looks like we could get a gusher.

At home today I hung two buckets in the yard. Last year I got 3 quarts which is just enough to keep me supplied for the year.

Next year I am hoping to scout the area for neighbors with sugar trees and see if they will let me tap. Then I can justify driving the cub to gather sap.


Fri Mar 09, 2007 10:18 am

Three quarts for a year?! That wouldn't get me through cleaning up the buckets, but then again, that's probably why my Cub has such good traction (extra weight on the seat!).

Just heard I'll be tapping all day tomorrow and Sunday. We expect a run Sunday, and a few next week, possibly. Still more than 3 feet of snow in the woods, so we're going to have to plow out some of the roads to our tanks (pipeline) and just leave some buckets for later or give the trees a break!

Cubitis- sounds like we're about on the same timing. Good luck!

Fri Mar 09, 2007 7:15 pm

Rusty-- I had to give up on sugaring after the '97 season,for a few reasons-lack of time being the biggest problem. I boiled on an outdoor fireplace using a milk can in '63&'64, then Dad built me a small sugarhouse for the '65 season--used a 2X4 Vermont Evaporater until '95,then bought a new Dominion&Grimm(18"X63" with a float box and no forced draft. It was slower than my old rig and I was getting too busy to sugar anymore so I sold it 2 years ago rather than let it just sit there. I do miss it sometimes, but have a friend less than 10 miles away if I need a steam "fix".
I better go but another Cub to take my mind off this!

Mon Mar 12, 2007 1:16 pm

I just tapped 6 trees in the backyard yesterday. They were all flowing but not real strong. We live at 2000 feet elevation, so our season is always a little behind. I'll tap 6 more trees down by the river in a few weeks. Because of the elevation, snow pack, and cold microclimate by the river, those trees flow well into mid April. It's kind of weird to go spring turkey hunting in the morning in the valley, and then return to the hills to boil sap.

I collect all week (about 30 gallons) and then boil all day Saturday in a 2x2 foot pan on a backyad evaporator. One thing I have become a firm believer in is pitching the ice from the buckets. I experimented with it last year and saw no drop in the syrup production, but my boiling times were down.

Thu Apr 26, 2007 8:25 am

We do maple syrup at the middle school here where I work. The kids love it and next year they want me to bring the cubs in and have hay rides through the woods! I can't wait.

Thu Apr 26, 2007 8:47 am

Clem, just be careful, it doesn't take very many people to overload the cubs stopping power.

Thu Apr 26, 2007 8:50 am

that was the first thing that crossed my mind. About how many do you think? I have had four adults on a wagon with no problem before. I figure if I had four cubs going I could handle the number of people. We are not a large district. The older fellas that run the sugar bush are all farmall guys, so they could help with the running.

Thu Apr 26, 2007 10:34 am

Clem the size of the load depends on up hill or down hill. Steep hill even 1st gear won't hold back much before the wheels skid. How do I know? don't ask.