There was white smoke rollin from my stoves in the sugar bush this weekend too.
The Indians would also leave the sap out in the cold to freeze. Then the ice could be lifted off of the top, leaving a higher concentration of sugar behind.
The pioneers, over time, improved the process. They developed the "spile." The spile is a "faucet" placed in a small hole, drilled into the tree. Early spiles were made from sumac branches.
And Bckrvue has improved on the process too. But, not by much. Like the early settlers I'm still using the hand drill but I've upgraded to copper spiles with 6 foot long bags for collecting the sap.
A mattock is a heavy sturdy grubbing tool with an adz blade that can be used as a hoe for digging in hard ground. The other blade of a mattock may be a pick (pick mattock) for breaking or prying small rocks or a cutting edge (cutter mattock) for chopping roots.
Safety tip:The handle can be removed for ease in packing and tools should always be put in their proper place so not to smash into your shin.
Things have slowed down to a crawl, literally.
Susie is picking up my slack, emptying sap bags and bring some back to finish off on the wood stove. She also has been working on her new web site
if ya have problems linking, just google it
be sure to check it out and feel free to re post. THANKS!