Monday, April 29, 2013

Thank you, Trees!

We had such a great season!  We'll finish with 500+ gallons of syrup, which is a record year for us.  We officially thanked the trees yesterday as we pulled the taps.  Still have a few busy weekends to wrap things up with bottling this weekend and collecting and washing the buckets from the woods the following weekend.  Enjoyed our visitors at the Shack this year.  Makes a sometimes exhausting season "fun."

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Still Collecting

We continue to collect 500-600+ gallons every day this week, and have been cooking every night for 18 days straight.  The trees are still running, but this weekend's 70-degree temps will definitely change the quality of the sap.  We'll cook through the weekend if you want to stop up and visit.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Steam's Roll'n

We are most definitely cooking tonight, Fri. Visitors welcome.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Cooking This Weekend!

The week has been busy enough collecting that we KNOW we'll be cooking this weekend.  We collected 1400 gallons on Monday, 800 gallons on Tuesday, and 500 gallons Wednesday.  More snow coming likely means MORE sap!  We're ready. 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


We collected 1400 gallons of sap yesterday.  We haven't had a season like this since 2009.  The weather looks perfectly cooperative this week and next.  We're so excited! 

Monday, April 15, 2013


Yesterday we collectd 500+ gallons (in the rain).  Not our most pleasant collecting day.  Today we went at noon and filled the gator twice (300 gallons), and will be going back when the kids get home from school.  There's probably another 500 gallons to collect.  Wahooo!!  We'll be cooking steady every evening this week.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Forget the Rest.

My previous post said we wern't collecting today or cooking tonight.  That has changed because the trees are dripping like crazy.  We'll be at the Shack tonight!

Sunday. A Day of Rest.

Kevin will light the stove for a few hours this afternoon to cook what sap we have left from yesterday.  The trees are not running today so we will not go out and collect, and the Shack will probably be quiet by 5.  We'll charge our batteries for what looks to be a great sapping week coming up!

Friday, April 12, 2013

The trees are happy with the SNOW!

Yesterday (Thursday) we collected 500+ gallons of sap, and cooked for awhile last night.  We're getting a very light syrup....which often-times happens after a snow if you cook the sap right away.  YUM!  We'll be cooking tonight and through the weekend.  We usually get started late afternoon after we're back from collecting.  Visitors welcome.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

We'll be cooking Friday evening, 4/12

We collected 460 gallons again on Wednesday.  We may take a break from cooking tonight, Thursday, but will be back at it on Friday evening. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Cooking tonight? Most likely.

We've collected 450 gallons of sap both Monday and Tuesday of this week, and came back and cooked for a few hours in the evening.  I'm predicting the same for tonight, Wednesday, 4/10. 

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Storm's Brewing

Technically, the trees shouldn't run today because the forecasted hi is only 37.  BUT, sometimes the drop in barometric pressure with a storm moving in makes the trees go crazy!!!  Let's hope. 

Monday, April 8, 2013

We're on a Roll!

We've just finished a successful weekend of collecting and cooking.  We collected about 1200 gallons of sap over the weeknd and cooked Friday and Sunday night.  We're expecting this to be a BIG week.  Probably won't cook tonight (Monday), but later in the week.  We'll keep you posted.

This weekend's collectors:
Tim  Grandpa  Vince  Tim  Ian  Alex
Arinda  Melissa  Kara  Heidi

Friday, April 5, 2013


They're finally running!  We collected about 500 gallons of sap yesterday (Thursday), and hope for a larger amount this afternoon.  We will be cooking at the Shack tonight (Fri) and most likely Sunday night; however NOT on Saturday night.....celebrating a family wedding!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Wisconsin's Trees are Running!

Our neighbor-trees to the east (Wisconsin) have started running.  They're usually a few days ahead of us.  It's coming!  Look at this AWESOME 10-day forecast!  We need 40+ days, freezing nights.  Hopeful to cook this weekend.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Still no sap. Still patient.

Well, the temperatures the past few days have been perfect for the trees to run, but apparently they're still hibernating.  We were in the woods this morning, and it still feels like Winter.  Lots of snow, and very little melting or running water.  We have no choice but to be patient.

Thursday, March 28, 2013


No sap yet.  We had a 'real' Minnesota the trees are being slow to wake.  It looks like our first cook may be Saturday.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

When are we Cooking?

Well, as of this afternoon, we haven't collected any sap yet.  It looks as if Fri/Sat will be our first big days. 

Last Minute Preparations.  Mounting tanks.......
To the 4-Wheeler.  85-gallon capacity.

To the Gator.  150-gallon capacity.

To the pickup.  425-gallon capacity.

Not so last minute Prepartions.......

Technical wiring/planning.  Our devoted neighbor, Jeff.

Cutting wood to feed the stove.  Our weekend pastime.

Stay tuned.  It'll be very soon.  Hopefully cooking by Saturday night.....Easter Eve!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Our Long-Awaited Forecast!

Here's the forecast we've been waiting for!  The trees will probably start running Fri/Sat of this week!  And it looks as if we have a good 2-week window ahead of us!  We're not super-worried about not quite freezing at night, because there's so much snow in the woods that it'll bring the temp down at night.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

We're Tapping!

Yesterday we went out and got about half the trees tapped.  We'll go back out today and hopefully finish the rest.....if we have enough batteries to last until the job's done.  Thanks for the batteries, Barney!

Tapping Power
Drill the hole

Pound the tap
This tree's ready

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Just how strange was last Spring?

Last year we got almost NO syrup due the very unusal weather.  Just how strange was it?  The hi's last year for this weekend were 81, 81, and 79, and it didn't freez at night for almost the entire month of March, which means the trees just didn't run.  This year looks much more promising!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Weather Geeks

We become complete weather geeks this time of year.  We're waiting for the perfect combination of 40+ degree days with freezing nights.  Our 10-day forecast is shown below.  Nothing above 40.  We still have NOT tapped our trees.  But we're READY.  The kids have off school the week of 3/25.  It'd be FUN if things got rolling that week.  Stay tuned.


Saturday, March 9, 2013

Getting Ready for 2013 Syrup Season.....

We're getting ready!
Yesterday we brought the pails out of the attic above the garage and loaded them on the trailer and brought them out to the woods!  In the photo the truck bed is full of pails too, and the back of the blazer is full to the top with lids for all of the pails.

Once in the woods, there was lots of snow! The day was exhausting....even for Daisy. The boys pulled the trailer (equipped with skis) through the snow with the gator and set the pails beside each tree. We haven't actually tapped the trees yet. We're waiting for the forecast to predict a string of 40+ degree days.

Our hard-working crew:  Michael, Mathew, Vince, Chad, Alex, Kevin.  It was an awesome day!

Stay tuned!