We made Maple Syrup this year. "We" being a relative term (more on that later). See this picturesque scene of the tin buckets hanging from the trees in the woods?
These are not our trees pictured below, nor our taps...
...because I didn't make it out to the taps this spring - not once! It was a busy, busy month and I was out of town for a three day weekend, plus incredibly busy at work. So, in lieu of our own tree tap photos, I borrowed these two pretty images from google images on the world wide web.
We tap our trees with 5-gallon plastic dill-pickle buckets that my brother-in-law gets from Burger King. Cliff emptied the 5-gallon plastic buckets daily into great big plastic soybean-oil barrels, which he hauled around in the back of our Polaris Ranger. Then on the weekends, he transferred the barrels into the back of his truck and drove them over to our friends, the Murphy's house so the sap could be cooked down in the big cooker. There was no sense in both of us running cookers at our houses, so we decided to work as a team and cook all of the sap together.
Cliff's parents, my parents and my girl friend C even came over to the Murphy's to see the cooking operation. It was a neat set-up and all of the overseers meant lots of ideas about the best way to monitor the temperature, keep the fire even and not too hot, etc.
So golden and smokey and sweet.