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summer living

Friday, April 1, 2016

a visit to a pancake house and sugar bush at Dumfries Maples





A week ago this past Wednesday we 'fabulous four' girlfriends went to Dumfries Maples in Dumfries, NB.  This is on Route 102 west of Fredericton along the St. John River.  We had a dusting of snow on the ground the night before and it was a cloudy morning with a few squalls at first but the sun came out around noon and it was a gorgeous spring day.


The drive along the St. John River is very scenic and, if you have the time, you should get off the Trans Canada Highway and slip on over to the 'old road' along either side of the river. (Route 105 is on the northerly side of the river)  We often take these routes when we go for a day trip and I have shared views from the 105 many times on here.  

Outside the building is a kettle used for boiling down the sap the old fashioned way.  Sometimes they make 'candy on the snow' on weekends.

Nathan Scott, a forester, moved back to New Brunswick in the late 90's and started the maple syrup business and sugar shack in the sugar woods that have been a part of the family farm for 4 generations.  Much of the farm was expropriated for the building of the Mactaquac Dam in the 60's (the river valley floor was flooded behind the dam) and the family left the community.  When Nathan returned the business went from hobby to commercial, with his sister Jane's help, with over 2000 trees tapped for the sap to syrup operation.


 Inside there was a fire going in the wood stove to heat the large room.  I should have taken a photo of the room itself as it is very casual with picnic tables and benches.  

The old woodbox filled at the ready.

Our meals were delicious!  They cooked our food to our specifications even.  Pancakes (they also serve gluten free ones) are their specialty along with ham, bacon, eggs and biscuits.  And.... real maple syrup and maple butter made in their sugar shack up the hill.

I ordered the scrambled eggs, and biscuits with maple butter.  Yum!
I must say that our hostess, Jane, was so sweet and kind and patient.  She even offered to take a photo of us.

Jane Scott, our lovely hostess/server.


After our brunch we went out into the beautiful spring sunshine and walked up the hill to the 'sugar shack'.  They weren't boiling sap that day but we went in and chatted with the owner a bit. 

Inside the sugar shack with the large vat where the sap is boiled down into syrup.  

The sap is tapped the old fashioned way with spigot and pail, and also the new way with plastic tubing.



There was quite a lot of snow in this north facing woods that day.  I'd like to go up again and take a walk in the sugar woods but our next 2 weekends are busy.  


The view across the road to the other side of the river.



We had a wonderful visit and enjoyed catching up on each others news.  One of my friends, Jill, had broken her foot just a few days before and was using crutches.  She was able to drive herself though as it's her left foot that is in a 'boot' and her car is an automatic.  We helped her in and out of the building which is on the level with no stairs.  I parked her car for her and fetched it afterward.



The drive home - with beautiful blue skies and sunshine.  That is the still frozen St. John River on the left.

Heading home across the Mactaquac Dam.

This is me showing you the best way to eat maple syrup.....
straight out of the bottle onto a spoon!  :)


Click on DUMFRIES MAPLES (www.dumfriesmaples.ca) for more information or visit their Facebook page for more information and directions on how to get there.  They are open all year around for their pancake breakfasts.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~


We are getting rain here this afternoon and the temperature is 13C.  I just went to fetch the mail and newspaper from the mailbox and couldn't believe how warm it is out.  I heard that the dreaded Polar Vortex is dipping down over us from Monday to Wednesday next week to put us in to winter cold temperatures again and make it feel like early March rather than April for the whole week.  I will try not to get depressed over this but I am rather envious to see spring blooming on some of your blogs.  It will happen.  Just later than soon.  :)


Thanks so much for your visits and comments.  I hope you all have a great weekend.  Enjoy!

Blessings,
Pam


26 comments:

  1. Sounds like a wonderful day trip . . .
    Nice drive, view, sights, breakfast, sugar shack and a walk in the woods too . . .
    They are predicting some wintery stuff for us as well . . . even that S word . . .

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  2. Haha, as you know I have no spring to share yet. Haven't been to a sugar bush for eons and enjoyed seeing your photos. Was the maple butter tasty on your scones? I could do this myself with some butter and the local syrup I purchase.

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  3. Oh what a fun day , lovely photos , I am soo glad you gals had a great time and such YUMMY foods . We have a sugar shack here that does maple syrup and maple butter as well as maple fudge it is so good . Thanks for sharing , have a good weekend !

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  4. Now that looks like a fun outing! I'm glad it is feeling like spring over there...even it is still looking more like winter! We are having very warm and beautiful weather here in the Fraser Valley right now. Lovin' it!

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  5. What an awesome place! The food looks fantastic! I have to say it seems weird seeing that snow this late even that far north. Probably because we had a rather mild winter this time around.

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  6. There are sugar shacks and pancake houses like this here, quite busy this time of year. We'll also be getting the cool-down as well.

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  7. I love the lovely photos of your day and the sugar shack on this post! Your blog and my blog show the vast diversity of Canada from each side. I find your blog so interesting and so different from our coast here. Thanks so much for the comments on my blog. Have a great weekend. cheers.

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  8. It looks so beautiful. I even showed snow pics to my hubby and read what you wrote about the St. John river. I would have to borrow a coat...oh and maybe a pretty scarf if I came to visit though! Enjoy your weekend! Hugs, Diane

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  9. Always love a visit ot a maple sugar bush! But I don't usually drink it straight!

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  10. Now I am craving pancakes, Pam! It's interesting to read about how they boil down the syrup and to see where they do it. I saw an old fashioned drill on the wall - I have one and wondered what it was used for! Now I know :) It's so nice to have a girlfriend pow-wow, even with a broken ankle! Hope this is the last cold snap for you. xx Karen

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  11. Oh, love that panorama in shot #18. Did I mention...no, I won't tell you our weather.

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  12. What a lovely and interesting post, Pam! I'm not much of a maple syrup lover (too sweet for me), but nevertheless I liked to see your breakfast, the facilities and the location and especially that photo of yourself pouring the syrup right on the spoon! You live in a beautiful area, and I do wish for you that spring will be around soon.

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  13. so much fun -- beautiful pictures and yummy at the end!!
    I really like that wood burning stove!!! Bet it had the room toastie!!

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  14. Is there anything better than maple syrup straight out of the bottle? I think not.
    We have Sugar Moon Farm, http://www.sugarmoon.ca/
    A nice drive and fun afternoon. I haven't been in ages, you have inspired me to go before the season is over. We are having the same weather, rain and mild. Not looking forward to the polar vortex!

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  15. What a fun outing with friends. The breakfast looks so yummy. Maple syrup is wonderful. I've never tried it on a spoon, but sometimes, when I use it, there's a drip on the bottle and I catch it with my finger and lick it off. Mmm good! I hope the polar vortex is short lasting and sunny spring returns.

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  16. That polar vortex is most unwelcome. We expect snow tomorrow and temps well below freezing. Ugh.

    However, perhaps it will be good for the maple syrup industry. Our season had already ended so not sure about that.

    What fun for the FAB Four to go on a day trip. What's next on the docket?

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  17. Enjoyed hearing about your excursion with friends for breakfast and to see the sugaring operations. I lived in VT once upon a time and loved seeing the tapping of the trees in the spring. I see you still have snow, too. I've finally found spring at a slightly lower altitude.

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  18. Looks like so much fun was had, I can't believe all the snow you still have!.
    Great photos.
    Xo
    Dagmar

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  19. What a treat and with gal friends no less. And that breakfast, yum. Carol

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  20. What a cozy place to eat brunch!

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  21. Hi Pam! Thanks so much for the visit... I actually haven't been blogging or hosting R5F for some time now but decided to start back up again, at least once a week. Love all the pics of that little eatery. Very cool! xo

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  22. Such an interesting post, Pam! What a wonderful trip you had and you look so happy with the spoonful of maple syrup! I too would love to have a pancake breakfast like that.
    We still have much snow as well and not very warm weather is predicted, but the longer days do cheer us up.
    Wishing you sunny spring days!

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  23. A lovely trip out with friends! The only maple syrup we see is in bottles!

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  24. Mouthwatering goodness in all images, even the scenes as you have already done the "magic" made the tongue wish for real Maple Syrup. I am thinking if I get downstairs, I may have the very thing, only mine is from Vermont. Those hotcakes looked yummy and the eggs, I am thinking I need to fix hotcakes, but then again I am going to do just eggs this morning, and maybe French toast with my syrup Thursday. Having time with best friends, it is such a wonderful time. Have a blessed week~

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  25. Oh what a fun place with your 'Fab Four' and beautiful post and photography!

    Wishing you peace in each day ~ ^_^

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  26. QUE HERMOSURA DE FOTOS!!!
    Y QUE FRIO..
    SALUDITOS

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