The weather report has been saying, “unseasonably warm” for days now, and I’ve been uneasy about the maple orchard. I would have liked to have tapped the trees before this past weekend, but I had EMS training Saturday and Sunday. I could have tapped sooner than that, but I didn’t get home from this year’s Grand Canyon hike until the wee hours of Thursday morning, and was pretty jet lagged Thursday and Friday. Then I had the double whammy of Daylight Saving day on Sunday.

It was a nice sunny day today. I made 3 trips out to the maple operation. The first in the morning to take Franco for his morning walk. I hauled about 3 gallons of water out there to use in rinsing out the evaporator and storage barrel. Both were washed thoroughly this summer, but I like to rinse them out once more before I start using them.

The second trip I took out the cordless drill and other odds and ends, and started tapping. Working from the sugar shack where everything is stored, I take 5 buckets, spiles, and lids each trip. When I use them up I head back for more. I kept at it until both batteries of the drill died. Then we came in and had some lunch, a nap, and then it was back out there with fresh batteries and the determination to finish tapping. The tap tap tap of sap drops falling into buckets followed me around as I made my way through the sugar bush. I was all done by about 6:00 pm. Then back inside for some supper. Tomorrow, if the weather stays like this, I should be able to fire up the evaporator for a spell.

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