Did you know that the New Hampshire maple syrup industry produces about 90,000 gallons of maple syrup each spring? As frozen sap in the maple tree thaws, it begins to move and causes pressure within the tree. When the pressure reaches a certain point, sap will flow from a fresh cut in the tree and the result is maple syrup! It takes freezing temperatures in the night and warm sunny days to create just the correct pressure to make the sap run, making a great harvest.
It all starts in late February when small holes are drilled into the trunk of trees and a spout is inserted. A bucket of plastic tubing is attached to the spout and the sap starts to drip! As it is collected, it is taken to a sugar house where the transformation to maple syrup all begins. The sugar house actually boils the sap and it becomes concentrated and has the consistency of maple syrup. It takes about 40 gallons of sap to make one gallon of pure maple syrup. Now, that is a lot of sap!
Now what good is making maple syrup if you can't taste it? During the weekend of March 27th and 28th, New Hampshire Maple Producers will host a Maple Syrup Weekend. Over 65 sugar houses across the state will host visitors and offer free samples and demonstrate how the process happens. You can either check their website or call 603-225-3757 for a list of participating sugar houses.
Here's to maple syrup!
is a skier's paradise for those craving adventure. It is often referred to as Tucks and is a large glacial cirque located on the east side of Mount Washington. The preferred time for skiing the headwall is spring, although snow stays on parts of Tuckerman's until mid summer. Everyone is encouraged to check for avalanche warnings prior to setting out for the hike, so do take care.
How to get to the top? Skiers must hike in via the Tuckerman Ravine trail, and carry along their skis and boots. The trail leaves from Pinkham Notch and is about a 3.1 mile hike to Lunch Rocks, which is at the base of the Ravine. From there, the trail gets a little steeper until you reach the top of Tuckerman's. By the time you have reached the top of the ravine, it only leaves time for about one run per day.
Just below the ravine is Lunch Rocks. This is where on-lookers gather to watch the ski runs and cheer for all involved. It has been told, that the cheers get even louder for the great wipeouts of the day. Lunch Rocks seems to become the place for an all day party and certainly there is reason to party after making the run down the ravine.
Skiing Tuckerman's Ravine takes skill, experience, and the desire for the rush of adreline. Certainly not for the faint at heart, but a worthy experience!
Spring skiing in the North Conway is my favorite time of the year. It is just perfect. The skies are sunny, the snow if soft, and the air has just the hint of spring! It is normally even warm enough that by the time you take the first ski run down the mountain that the warm layers start to come off and it truly feels warm! I have to say that this is usually the first sign for me that spring in on its way!
After a morning or refreshing skiing on the mountain, we usually grab an outside area for lunch. It feels like we are skiing in the West and I can feel the sun warming up my skin as I get my first suntan of the season. By the end of lunch, I am so relaxed that I don't know if I can put my boots back on and go up the mountain. However, knowing the great conditions and that the ski season is getting shorter each day I pry myself off the bench and back to the trails.
Spring skiing in North Conway, just perfect!