Tappin’ Maples

Good Morning Everyone. We finally had a chance to tap the maples yesterday. The kids and I went down the west facing drive to tap red maples that have historically done well for us. I mentioned the other day that neighbors have been tapping around us but that conditions have been quite slow. Given yesterday’s weather and the snow squalls that were pouring from the sky off and on I didn’t believe anything would be moving. But there it was flowing like…well, like water.

The kids and I were equally delighted by the moment. They live to suck the sap straight from the tree, nursing at the spiles as if they were starving for the barest essence of the maple’s life affirming sugar. Carefully spacing our new taps a fair distance from older tap scars we drilled new holes with brace and bit, by hand. Sawyer would carefully tap a spile into its hole and wait. On the first hole he stuck his finger in and out flowed sap. Like Midas he made sure he pressed his finger deep into each spile thereafter. A dozen buckets was all we had time to put out in the cold wind and snow but hearing the tell tale tink…tink…tink in the metal buckets as we walked back up the drive warmed our hearts. We will get some more taps out in a few days.

I celebrate tappin’ maples perhaps like some may celebrate Easter, when nature is discovered to be rising again from the death of winter. All is not lost, and though March is a long month here in New England, the maples let us know that this too shall pass and life is full of sweetness. You just got to work a little to find it and sometimes having someone with the right touch helps too.

Have a great day. Be well. Do good.


  1. After a great chat with Capts Barry and Jen this morning, I’m even more excited about sailing again this year. Barry, I read every entry from January and March, but I actually have work to do, so I’ll read February’s entries another day.

    Many of your entries churned up some great memories of my own from the many amazing weeks of sailing I’ve had with you and your fabulous crew aboard the Mary Day. Can’t wait for more!


  2. Barry, do you suppose that some of that maple flavoring might last until September to go with our french toast?

    Jim & Sandra

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