It is That time of year again when the Maple trees are being tapped and the crystal clear sap is turned into Pure Maple Syrup at the Creekside Cabin.
The hygrometer measures, not only when the syrup is syrup,
but also whether or not it is done to perfection, hot or cold.
More about that later.
It's a ' timing ' thing, making syrup.
The weather has to be cool to cold at night,
warming steadily during the day to afford a drip,
drip, drip in the buckets until they are full of that
crystal clear sap.
The sap is collected in 5 gal. buckets that are carried from tree to tree, sap bucket to sap bucket, emptied and strained into 15 gal. barrels.
oops, forgot to downsize this pic.
anyway, from the 15 gal. barrels the sap is pumped into the large tank that has a drip system assembled at the receiving end, dripping the sap into the cooking pan.
The sap runs through copper tubing from the large storage tank and into the cooker which you can barely see due to all the steam off the top of the pan. The pails in the background are sap warming also.
All of this primitive way of making maple syrup, family style, is done over extremely hot coals under that cooking pan which is about 3 ft. wide by 6 ft. long. and 7 inches deep.
As you can see, there is still a lot of snow, mud and melting going on here, so it gets to be a pretty messy job done outside. I heard the boys talking about making a cook shack for this part of our operation. If they are going through all this trouble to cook syrup, then I say, " Heck, Ya! "
Since we do not have the new-fangled, high tech reverse osmosis system of doing this, it takes many hrs. of watching the sap boil~~~
and boil and roll and skim!~~~
until, finally, it's ready to~~~~
pull the pan off that hot, hot fire, then
place it on another table, lining the pour spout over the
straining can. It's an intense moment.
Finally, open the spout and let it pour!
Let the liquid gold strain through the orlon bag and into the clean milk can.
The syrup is at it's ' near finished ' stage.
The sun is setting on our day, a very long one,
so the next day,
the syrup was reheated to the ' hygrometer ' point
and canned. The first batch was that golden glow,
the second much deeper colored but they both taste
Fantastic of Maple Goodness!
The Ping test to assure the jars have all sealed, and
we are done with batch #2.
It's a very s l o w process but we do this at the
CABIN, so it's a wonderful thing.
Even in the snow.
Thanks for following our ' family plan.'