St Croix River Road Ramblings

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Thursday, March 30, 2017

Maple Season 2017

We seem to be near the end of the 2017 maple syrup season.  This is about 3 weeks ahead of normal.   The lakes here have been open a week already (the same ones that normally open mid April), and in general, February and March are running far above normal in temperatures. 
We have made about 1 quart of syrup per tap, an average season, although it seems like the sap only ran a few times in the 4 weeks we have had the taps out.  No real big runs this season, just a gallon or so in the pail every few days with many too warm or too cold gaps.  
We probably will leave the taps out for another week or two even though the forecast is for temperatures too warm for sap to run.  
 We didn't put out all of the taps this year.  Another year that I'm showing my age and ambition!  
  Spring has been dryer than normal.  The snow melt was back in February, and not much at that -- not much snow and very little rain, and those barely making a puddle in the yard. 
  Margo and I managed our Jan-Feb 4-week camper trip south fine, and so will probably try it again next year -- maybe all of January and half of February.  Nice to be where it is pleasant during the winter. 
  The first bluebird showed up yesterday at the cabin.  I think that is early too.  Right now we are at the place we normally would a month later.  The past 10 years have been trending warmer and shorter winters with what was abnormal not so long ago, normal now  (the maple season moved 2 weeks earlier; lakes open etc.).