Monday, January 26, 2009

Forget that Groundhog, Maple Syrup Tells the Story



January 26th, 2009 and 53 Days till Spring

Last year, I just checked an article I did last year at this time and noticed the maple syrup runs began about this time in January. Don't think that will happen this year, it is still way too cold.
According to some of the people interviewed, who have tapped trees for decades, the season normally didn't begin until late February, even March, and some recall as late as April.
On a related note, I have been hearing about snow amounts in various locations in the county measuring about 180 inches and temps as low as minus 17. I know I've shoveled about that amount and you have to wear ten pounds of clothing to prevent frostbite. By contrast, at the Erie Airport, the latest figures I saw were 86 inches of snow so far to date.
Last year I went to the local maple associations' open house. It was a good time (all free) and there are a lot of free samples. This year it will be held the weekend of March 15-16 from 10 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon. More information can be viewed at the Web site for the Northwestern Maple Association.
Forget the Groundhog next week, when you see the maple syrup buckets up, it's a real good sign the winter is breaking. The sap flows when the daytime temps get above freezing with nigh time lows below freezing (well, that's what the producers like and it makes the best syrup).
Photos:the outhouse at Dotteyville last week (no time to read)
Photo:: beer drinking lawn chairs in another season