UnTapped by Slopeside Syrup

Last month I photographed a story for The Guardian written by a friend and journalist Tik Root on Slopeside Syrup’s latest venture, UnTapped, and the idea of maple syrup as a natural energy source. The crew behind the syrup wanted to come up with a way to make syrup more accessible and portable, so they created packets of 100% pure Vermont maple syrup weighing just under an ounce, the perfect size for on-the-go enjoyment. Marketed as a natural source of athletic fuel, the packets have been selling out at various retailers, including the Outdoor Gear Exchange and the Ski Rack in Burlington, Vt. We spent the afternoon touring the Slopeside Syrup operation, located within the woods of Cochran’s Ski Area, a mountain in Richmond, Vt. run by the legendary Cochran ski family. The company’s 23,000 taps, weaving delicately through trees and around ski trails, are spread across 500 acres. Each tap yields one gallon of sap per day, and the sap travels down a maze of tubing and into a sugarhouse located at the bottom of the mountain. It was a lot of fun seeing how things are done, and the guys who make it all happen couldn’t have been nicer. A big thanks to Andrew Gardner, Roger Brown, Doug Brown, and Tim Kelley for showing me the ropes, and even sharing some Heady Topper.

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