Looking out the window this winter at our maple trees, I decided that I should try my hand at making maple syrup! I have never made it before, had no idea what I was doing and had no equipment for it, but I wasn't going to let that minor detail ruin my pancakes! After searching some kijiji sites for tapping gear, Isabel and I set out on a road trip to Perth and found just what we were looking for from the Walker family..old fashioned aluminum pails, rain lids and spiles (that is "sugar shack" lingo for taps). We were in business...kicking it old school even!
The following day, I grabbed the drill, a 5/16 bit and set out to tap my first tree...
...hole drilled, spile tapped in,
...and Isabel on bucket duty! Man, we are the dream team of maple tree tapping!
Our first few drops of sap...it almost moved me to tears! (these spiles are called "tree savers"...apparently, the hole required for this particular type of tap, is smaller than the metal ones and easier for the tree to heal).
Just a few of the trees we tapped that day...it seems that I'm not as good as I thought at this because after a strong wind, I had to gather pails from the yard...James stepped in with authority after that little fiasco!
Isabel gathering sap the following day.
...and this is what I found gathering sap tonight...
...the sap was just pouring out!
I'm a little green at this venture but I would say that this is quite the haul!! We are looking forward to a maple syrup boil this weekend and here's to hoping that I don't mess it up!