April 24, 2014
We are now in the washing up phase of our operation. All the taps need to be removed from the trees and the pipe lines back flushed and capped for storage until next year. Our camp is open daily this week and on the weekend. We will be open by appointment or by chance next week.
April 20, 2014
We made our last syrup for the season yesterday. We are still adding up our production but we did not make our target of 1 litre per tap. Beautiful day today and the camp is open for syrup pickup.
April 18, 2014
After a spell of warm weather we had two days of frost. With the return of warm weather we had a large run of sap last night and it is continuing today. We will be boiling most of the day today and the camp is open all weekend-Friday, Saturday,Sunday and Monday. the Kettle Boys and Shanty Men have shut down for the season but the trails are now open for walking and we still have taffy- on-the-snow and a full range of products for sale.
April 12, 2014
A beautiful day at the sugar bush. We were surprised with a steady run of sap and enough to boil in the afternoon. Tomorrow may be rainy but with the lower atmospheric pressure the sap should continue to run. We will be open as usual. Tomorrow will be the last day for the Kettle Boys as their families want them at home for Easter. The first bluebird returned to our bird box yesterday and was back today signing in the nearby tree. So it looks like he has declared that this is his territory and he is waiting for his mate to return. Bluebirds were also seen at bird boxes at our other sugar bush near Clayton.
April 11, 2014
Spring has finally arrived with very warm weather and the snow is quickly disappearing. Not so good for maple sap as we need freezing temperatures at night to pump the sap up the tree. We did make the first amber amber syrup today and hopefully we will have a few more days of production before the end of the season. All our activities are in full swing for the weekend.
April 10, 2014
We have been very busy all week and today looks like another very good sap day. The weekend especially Saturday looks good as well
April 6, 2014
Its shaping up to be a beautiful day here at the sugar bush. Lots of frost last night so there should be lots of sap today. All our activities are in on today.
April 5, 2014
Lots of rain yesterday but with the lower atmospheric pressure the sap ran well. Cool today but tomorrow it is to be warn and sunny and looks like another perfect day at the sugar bush. We are open and all our activities are in full swing.
April 3, 2014
So far the season is progressing well. Sap is running steadily but not hard and we are making good syrup .The syrup has been mostly medium grade in colour , which is unusual, as the first runs usually produce light or extra light syrup. Other producers in both Ontario and Quebec are having the same experience. Something to do with the cold winter and the fact that with the heavy snow cover the tree roots are still frozen. The long range forecast looks promising but too early to tell what the full season will produce.
April 1, 2014
Yesterday was the kind of day syrup makers dream about. The sun shone, the sap ran, the equipment worked well and we made some very nice syrup. Today looks equally promising with lots of sun but not too warm. So the season is finally off to a delayed but flying start.
March 30, 2014
I spoke too soon. We had a major snowstorm last night with 10cm of snow. We are plowed out and will be open and at 9.00 am the snow is mostly over. So maybe later today it will return to spring.Tomorrow looks very promising with temperatures well above zero.
March 29, 2014
After another very cold week the weather has finally turned spring like. However, it may be March 30 before we have our first real run of sap. Today the Kettle Boys are in action and we have the usual camp activities. We have some fresh syrup for sale, fresh maple tarts and taffy-on-the-snow.On Sunday the annual pancake breakfast is being held at Union Hall at 1984 Wolf Grove one kilometer from our farm.
March 23, 2014
It was a sunny pleasant but cool day to-day. The sunshine continues tomorrow and the camp will be open. We have some early run syrup for sale along with all our other maple products. Maple vinegar is a new product for us this year. It is made by fermenting maple sap over a three to six month period. It has a distinctive maple flavour which mixes well with garlic and other ingredients for a delicious salad dressing.
March 23, 2014
Finally we had a modest run of sap and made some syrup yesterday. Back to very cold weather again today. We will have to wait until next weekend for a warm spell. The camp is open today and the Kettle Boys are finishing some syrup in their kettles. We have of fresh syrup for sale, fresh maple tarts and of course taffy on the snow. We heard the red shouldered hawk yesterday so they have returned again right on schedule. We also saw the first migrant robin this week and there are lots of wild apples still on the trees so there should be food available.
March 21, 2014
Good news. We had a small run of sap yesterday and we have enough for the Kettle Boys to set up their kettles on Saturday and Sunday. We will not have enough for the big evaporator unless the sap runs today. Then another cold spell but by the 27th the forecast is for warmer weather and the real start of the maple season.
March 17, 2014
We had a small sap run on Saturday and finally made our first syrup of the season. Then the cold weather returned and we are back into winter. There may be a warming trend later this week and we certainly hope so. The camp is closed until we get some warmer weather.
Still not warm enough for sap. Looks like we will have to wait another week before the season starts. Our camp will be open on the weekend . We will have taffy on the snow and some products to sell but no fresh syrup. The trails are snowy but walkable. The Kettle Boys will not be here until next weekend.
March 12, 2014
After one day of springlike weather we are now in the midst of a major snowstorm. The sap did run a bit on March 11 but not enough to make syrup. Saturday may be warm enough for another small sap run then back to cold weather. Lots of time for repairs to pipelines. There seem to be more than normal number of squirrel chews on our pipelines this year. The squirrel population seems to have increased due to the big seed crop on many trees last fall.
March 8, 2014
It looks like we will have to wait another week for the first run of sap. It takes a couple of consecutive days of warm weather to thaw the trees enough for sap to run. Meanwhile, we continue to prepare the camp and do all the pipeline repairs that were spotted while tapping.
February 28, 2014
One of hardest aspects of making maple syrup is waiting for the weather to cooperate. The very cold weather is delaying the start of the maple season. When it finally warms up the sap may come in a rush so then we will be wishing for the return of cold weather. We will finish tapping this weekend and start the process of getting the camp spruced up for the new season. We will not be open for visitors until the weather warms up and the sap starts to run.
February 23, 2014
It’s a cool but pleasant weekend and tapping is progressing well. The snow is soft, in spite of the rain this past week,which makes for slow going on snowshoes. According to the long range weather forecast the weather remains cool until March 8 or later. The traditional start date for the maple syrup season in Lanark County is March 15 so we may be right on schedule this year.
February 13, 2014
Tapping will start this weekend. The cold weather is finally easing to a more comfortable range. This is the last weekend for Winterlude in Ottawa and you can visit the Kettle Boys at Confederation Park until Monday.
January 20, 2014
Preparations are underway for the new season. We hope that it will be as good as 2013. The cold weather which helps convert the starch stored in the tree to sugar should help to make sweeter sap this spring. We were fortunate to escape the ice storm which hit Toronto and aside from some wind damage our bush is in good shape.