In New England, when the days start getting above 40˚F and the nights are still below freezing, it's sugaring time. Sugaring is the process of tapping sugar maples, collecting the sap and boiling it into maple syrup. This is such a tradition and important event in New England that all schools take the last week of February off because, in days long gone, the whole family was needed to help with the sugaring.
This weekend we visited a sugar house for the first time.
A tree tapped in the traditional method.
Sampling the sap.
The sugaring house.
The wood-burning stove used to boil large quantities.
Testing the boiled sap to see if it's reached the syrup stage.
Monitoring the color of the syrup tells them when to stop tapping.
Enjoying maple syrup over ice cream.
I just loved these darling buckets we saw on the way home.