Authentic Maple Sugaring Experience at The Rocks Starts March 11

Hands-on, educational tour brings families from near and far

February 1, 2023
The Rocks
A horse-drawn wagon takes visitors past sugar maple trees with metal buckets gathering sap.

Maple sugaring has been a sweet tradition for centuries in New Hampshire, where smoke rising from sugar houses tucked into the woods signals the welcome arrival of spring. Nowhere can one experience maple sugaring like they can at the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests’ (Forest Society) conservation center, Forest Society North at The Rocks, in Bethlehem.

Come join us for an authentic maple sugaring experience at Forest Society North at The Rocks, on Saturday, March 11, Saturday, March 18, Sunday, March 19, Saturday, March 25, Sunday, March 26, and Saturday, April 1. Reservations are highly recommended.

As the days warm, sap begins to flow through sugar maple trees, ready to be collected and crafted into sweet maple syrup, sugar, and candy. The New Hampshire Maple Experience is a hands-on, educational experience that includes tapping a maple tree, a horse-drawn wagon ride, a visit to a working sugar house by a tractor-drawn wagon ride, and maple tasting with syrup, donuts, and pickles. Participants will leave with the knowledge of how to identify a maple tree, how to tap and boil the sap to make syrup, and an understanding of the history of maple sugaring.

“We created the New Hampshire Maple Experience to share both the history and the continuing practice of maple sugaring in New England,” said Nigel Manley, senior outreach manager for the Forest Society at The Rocks “This hands-on experience is truly unique and exciting for all ages. Participants will hand drill holes and tap metal spouts into the trees and if you are lucky and the conditions are right the sap will start flowing.”

The spectacular White Mountain views, including the Pliny, Kilkenny, and Presidential ranges, the Christmas Tree Farm, the new solar array, and the allure of an authentic farm experience draw visitors near and far for the New Hampshire Maple Experience at The Rocks. The landmark 1,400-acre property is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and offers agri-tourism and eco-tourism opportunities throughout the year. 

"What makes the New Hampshire Maple Experience different is that kids and adults alike will learn how to identify a sugar maple tree versus a red maple, use an authentic brace and bit to tap a tree, and the knowledge and enthusiasm shared by our staff and volunteers, including Brad Presby, a fifth-generation maple sugarer,” adds Manley. “It’s truly a fun and engaging experience for the whole family that is not to be missed.”

Maple syrup from The Rocks’ own sugar bush will be available for purchase inside the New Hampshire Maple Museum, where visitors can see maple artifacts from the extensive collection of legendary sugar maker Charlie Stewart of nearby Sugar Hill.

NH Maple Experience at The Rocks:

Dates: Saturday, March 11; Saturday, March 18; Sunday, March 19; Saturday, March 25; Sunday, March 26; and Saturday, April 1

Times: Tours leave hourly from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and last approximately 2 hours.

Cost: $20/adult and $18/child (or $70 per family, maximum of two adults and two children). Fee includes tapping a maple sugar tree, two wagon rides, maple tasting, and more.

Reservations: Email The Rocks at or call (603) 444-6228 to make a reservation.

Learn more:



The Rocks is the North Country Conservation and Education Center of the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests. A construction project currently underway will renovate the stone carriage barn as a net-zero program center with a new gift shop, exhibits, forest and nature education programs, and offices for locally based conservation and outreach staff. For more information, visit For reservations and other inquiries, email or call 603-444-6228.