It's becoming laughable how nasty and cold this winter has been (and how wrong I was about my prediction). February is already 7.4 degrees below average and tied for the second coldest on record. What does that mean for this coming sugaring season? Good question. I am just hoping that the weather pattern changes soon.
We have 14,000 tapped at this point, and 9300 to go. Everything that runs directly to the sugarhouse is ready to go, and now it is on to our two pump stations. Last season we had around 18,000 done at this same time, so we are behind by about 4 days, which is not too bad considering, but last winter was cold as well. When we have been able to tap we've been very efficient with three of us drilling. Maybe its because we are only able to tap 1-3 days a week and we are fresh everyday.
It legitimately may be March until we get any sap, which has not happened in any of the past 8 years. Every winter we get a warm up in January or February or both and just about every time there is a problem of some sort that needs repair, such as the R/O or releaser. The concern I do have is that when the sap does eventually run we will likely be 100% tapped or close to it. This means that if we have any problems with starting up our equipment than its going to be a mad dash to get things repaired. When things are only used for 3 months a year and were working perfectly, its amazing how suddenly they can break when its time to start them up. We also have a new pump house to get figured out so its going to be a bit stressful first run, thats for sure.
I think I am still going to have a few weeks at least to get prepared for it.