Photo Essay

Sugaring Off at Westfield Heritage Village

The wafting smells of wood smoke and boiling sap are a intoxicating combination when walking from display to display.

By Margaret Lindsay Holton
Published March 10, 2015

Westfield Heritage Village, near Rockton
Westfield Heritage Village, near Rockton

There is no surer sign of spring then the rising of the maple tree sap.

Sapping tapping trio
Sapping tapping trio

This hardy trio is tapping 160 maple trees at Westfield Heritage Village over the next few weeks. The syrup fest runs on March 15, 22, and 29, Good Friday April 3 and Easter Sunday, April 5, as well as Wednesday, March 18 and Thursday, March 19 during March Break. All are welcome.

One maple tree produces about 1 litre of pure maple syrup after the sap is boiled down.

A log cabin mistress tends a warming fire.
A log cabin mistress tends a warming fire.

'Tapping' is a native tradition, adopted by the French, then the English. Examples of that evolution are re-enacted all around the village by enthusiastic volunteers who play-out our colonial history.

The wafting smells of wood smoke and boiling sap are a intoxicating combination when walking from display to display.

Schoolhouse from the 19th century.
Schoolhouse from the 19th century.

If you are going, be sure to wear good watertight boots. The snow is melting and it gets muddy, fast.

Westfield Heritage Village is near Rockton, about 40 minutes from downtown Hamilton, by car.

Main means of transportation a mere 100 years ago.
Main means of transportation a mere 100 years ago.

For more information, including maps, and entrance fees, visit the Westfield Heritage Village website.

A mid-career Golden Horseshoe artist and author, Lindsay is available for commissions and assignments via 'mlhpro' at 'hotmail' dot 'com'. See samples at http://canadadaPHOTOGRAPHY.blogspot.com.

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