SweetWood Maple Products

Pennsylvania Pure Maple Syrup  


Maple Season - 2004

Wow, what a strange season in 2004.  Warm in late December, then sub zero until mid February.  We tapped the third week of February when the sap started flowing.

Two weeks later, it hit 60 degrees on one day, then a week of 50's.  Bad bad bad.  Buddy syrup was signaling the drastic end of the season.

But wait...really cold temps again and a deep snow pack helped pull back "mother nature" a little longer to get some more sap.  That is, as long as you wanted to risk drilling some more fresh holes since bacteria had stopped the flow of the ones from February.

We had 100 taps on tubing and 50 taps on buckets in 2004.  Roughly 400' of 1/2" mainline and 1000' of 5/16" branch line.

The buckets required a drive with a 55 gallon drum in a wagon to have a place to pump out the dumping stations (new plastic garbage cans) that were posted in the woods on the north side of our house in the neighbor's woods.

All in all, 1800 gallons of sap translated into 29 gallons of syrup.  We ate or sold every drop by December.

Another long look at the Leader Catalog and asking permission from my South neighbor to tap and ... maybe 350 taps for 2005?

If you do the math, I must be crazy...

Some photos after a "winter wonderland" snow.  We just recently bought a digital camera, hence the better quality.  (Click on thumbnail picture for a larger view)

  Looking from our driveway at the sugarhouse.  Look carefully...you can see the wagon with 55 gallon plastic drum.

Looking north into the sugarbush from the backyard. 

Along the path going north.  We used the Wheel Horse tractor with a trailer and a pump to haul sap back to the sugarhouse.  We hauled 1800 gallons this way...50 gallons drum at a time!

This was a clearing at the end of the path.  It opened up nicely to about 30 trees in about a 1/2 acre area.

A neat photo while I was caught in a wind gust with no coat!  That morning was so beautiful...I ran out and didn't think much about it.

Looking South East towards the Sugarhouse from the path coming back from the clearing.

A close up of a branch line with two spiles on a piece of 5/16" tubing.