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Maple Syrup Season 2016: It’s A Wrap!

Great is the only word to describe the 2016 crop. We produced the most syrup ever at our farm – both on a total number of gallons and pounds per tap! The season started early with our first boil in February. This early run gave us a chance to test all the equipment and fix the issues from the prior year or tweak areas that were not working as well as they should have. The lack of snow during the winter made tapping much easier this year. However, the open winter had us initially concerned that it would be a very short season.

We had three great runs this season that made this season memorable. These three runs resulted in many days of operating the equipment around the clock. We boiled a total of 33 days between the first boil on 2/6/16 to the last boil on 4/19/16, and filled 209 barrels.

This year ended up being great but getting there was a rollercoaster. The weather forecast did not help with reducing the stress of the season. Early predictions were for poor sugaring weather. It ended up being perfect. These were followed by predictions of days with high temperatures, which ended up being overcast. The couple of colder days we did have allowed us to catch up and also gave the trees a good recharge. So, for a season that started out looking like it was going to be a disaster, it turned out to be quite the opposite.

Over the last 8 years we have added taps or replaced sections of our woods. This work has reduced the number of vacuum leaks and increased the sap production. The vacuum this year averaged around 25-26 inches. These section we replaced this year ran a full 1 1/2 pipe of sap multiple days during the year. Those are great days which make for a great year.

Although the season only wrapped up earlier this week, we are already planning and getting ready for the season next year. We will be headed out into the woods to pull taps now and we are enjoying the sights and sounds of spring and warm days ahead.

A view of the trees