March 25, 2007

"Boiling...... All Are Welcome to Drop In!"

The boys have been keeping up with the collecting and boiling part of the sugaring process!! Thank God for the boys!! :) You can see from this picture, our 'Sugar Shack' is just that.... a shack of sorts! The metal roofing went on last summer and even has a vent on the top so that the steam (evaporation) can escape! We collect wood scraps all year 'round and after stacking it all up around the inside it is stored under the tarps to the right of the doorway. The pallets are covering up the mouddy walkway!
In this picture you can see the 55 gallon barrel tipped on its side... that is our 'holding tank' where the sap is poured waiting to be boiled. If you look closely you can see a clear hose coming out of the bottom right end of the barrel... this hosing leads the sap to the evaporating pan!! The orange hose is a pressure relief valve... (In the event that the metal tubing overheats it will re-route the HOT sap back into the white barrel.) Travis is 'taste-testing' the "Not Quite Maple Syrup" with a few friends that stopped in to see the maple sugaring process. We really enjoy sharing the fun we've had and the things we've learned along our journey with others!

I just was told that they have about 180 gallons of sap in process as I type! The sap needs to be brought up to 219*-220* before it is 'syrup'.and can be bottled! That may not sound too bad, but consider that the water is being evaporated off and more sap is continually being added this process takes time... And to think...... it all starts with the dribbles of sap from the Sugar Maple Tree!!


A. Sanborn said...

I can taste it now & it's not even Christmas yet! *wink* If your boiling sap down this week, maybe we'll swing in with Sophie. Awesome idea to blog about maple sugaring season... can't wait to see what the season will bring next for your blog? Maybe "Farmer's Market!" *wink*


mad4books said...

I'm with your friend! This has been a captivating blog series and you must post pictures EVERY YEAR.

***Oh, and I love the words "Sugar Shack." This would be an awesome band name! :-)