Welcome to our new website! We have been working hard on a new version, actually this is the second new version. We are getting most of the kinks out but if you have anything that is not working properly let me know. The checkout process is easier now and should take care of a few of your headaches.
We started tapping on January 2. The earliest we have started. Generally we try to start the first week of January but sometimes we need another week to get ready or the weather does not cooperate. We've got a good group of 4 of us tapping and the conditions have been great with little snow and nice weather. We have about 7500 trees tapped. We have around 500 new taps and then replaced about 4000 more drop lines so we started with those trees first. The temps got above freezing two days ago and we got a vacuum pump on and checked what we had tapped for leaks. Mostly trees we missed tapping but found a few animal chews as well. Its nice to get things fired up and make sure its working after sitting for a year. A little bit of sap came into the sugarhouse but we didn't save it. Its a real bonus to get those leaks fixed before the next warm up when we have lots more trees online.
Ill be updating the report more often as we get through sugaring season. Last year was so busy and we didn't do too much work in the woods for most of the summer. Once fall rolled around we got pretty busy and aside from the changing drop lines, and adding the 500 taps, we changed about 2000 manifolds out that leaked and fused the new CDL spin seals over the holes. We think this will make a big difference in how that section of woods runs. 15 new vacuum sensors were installed in the woods and we have an experimental sensor set up sending a signal a mile across the valley which will now give us real time data on the vacuum level in that woods. We have also purchased a new four wheeler with tracks to get more people into the woods. I am also really excited about our reverse osmosis upgrade. We have doubled the capacity of our CDL machine and added a high brix pump and and membrane that will allow us to concentrate sap upwards of 25%. This will reduce our boiling time and and lower our fuel and electricity consumption/costs. We will still use the DG reverse osmosis as a back up or single pass machine on the bigger runs.
Our bourbon barrel aged maple syrup has been selling well and our newest batch was just bottled last week. It has an even better flavor than our original batch thanks to using smaller bourbon barrels.
We will keep working hard tapping as long as it takes. The forecast is looking a little too cold to tap today and later in the week but we will be out there any day we can. Once we start I want to get it over as soon as possible before we get too much snow or it warms up again. Once it warms up, the more we have tapped and ready to go the more syrup we will make.
If we finish early, then my crew and I may be able to lend a hand to other sugarmakers to finish tapping. Let me know if you want our help.