When Should I Start Tapping?

When Should I Start Tapping?

We often get asked when should someone start tapping? Here at Bascom’s we usually start tapping the middle of January. Not because we feel this is the optimal time, but rather because it takes us so long to drill 90,000+/- tap holes. The walking conditions play a big part in how quickly we can get tapped, but usually it takes us around 6-7 weeks to get all tapped. Those that have a smaller # of taps and can tap in a couple days or a weekend, we recommend waiting and watching the weather. Each producers location may be different, and they will need to make their own decision when it is right to tap for them.

The fresher a tap hole the better it will run. Optimum sap runs for our location usually are in March, and sometimes early April. By using a new spout we are not contaminating the tap hole as soon as we tap, and studies have shown this will result in more sap.

Hole Tapping Tips

  • Drill into clean fresh wood (not near any old tap holes)
  • Use a good bit (one made for drilling into frozen wood)
  • Straight in and out, do not ream the holes. 1.5-2” deep
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