“It’s time to put on your big boy pants and get zesty,” said an Iditarod musher to a flailing musher he overcame on a particularly grueling stretch of trail.
WEATHER: The Turn.
The thaw began on Thursday.
Thursday night it dropped to 32 at the sugarhouse.
Friday it climbed to 45.
Friday night stayed warm, 40, some rain.
Saturday morning the rain is clearing, it’s supposed to get into the 60’s with sunshine. [This is not ideal sugaring weather, as the buds can develop quickly in the heat at this point in the season.]
There’s a flood watch for Sunday-Monday.
HOW’S IT RUNNING? Even in my sleep I note the pump releasing sap into the holding tank: 27 seconds of groaning on a low B tone, 20 seconds of rest. It’s the heart beat of a modern sugaring operation.
On Friday morning, for the first time this year, an early surge caused flooding in the vacuum pump room and into the overflow unit. The sap has been hammering in ever since.
The maples have finally loosened up in sugarbushes across northern Vermont. Phew.
BOILING STATUS: We’re busy.
Four days ago, Chief of Operations wrote:
Turtle Runs 4/9/19
There are some years when the transition from winter into spring is quick and decisive. This is not one of those years. Sugaring has been described as the equal marriage of the sun and the frost. For a marriage to be successful neither partner should have the upper hand for too long. This year’s marriage is not yielding.
We are currently in a period of temperature range between the low 30’s and mid 40’s, cloudy skies, and lots of rain. This isn’t the storybook sugaring weather of hard freezing nights followed by warm sunny days. The transition to spring is in stagnation and the resulting sap runs are tedious and boring. These turtle runs eventually produce enough sap to boil but their plodding march to the finish line is so unexciting.
Our thermometer for the last forty hours has been locked on 33°. With this pattern of nights that never really freeze and days that never really feel warm, the melting is happening at a snail’s pace. I can’t ever remember the snow so deep in our woods at this time of year. I find myself asking if it will ever melt enough to let the spring flowers emerge, though I need to keep in mind it always has.