I got to Jenkins’ Bog early on the second day of the harvest…
Just in time to see a skittish group of mallards paddling quickly past.
The eggbeater had left the water floating with as many twigs and leaves as berries, yet the ducks seemed to make it through just fine!
Everything looked so calm.
The berries floating on the water belied the drama that was about to unfold.
For the Jenkins team was there with their trucks and rakes and ready to get started!
I noticed something new this time; a huge “spindle” wound with long black booms, like the kind fishermen use.
The trucks and equipment were heading to the far end of the bog where the cranberries had settled overnight.
What looked like huge vacuum hoses were rolled out and connected.
One harvester dragged the end…
Out into the middle of the great pool of cranberries.
Four stakes were hammered into place to mark the spot.
Time for a roundup!
The two ends of a floating boom were slowly dragged out…
A great, ever-tightening circle of cranberries began to take shape.
At last, the two ends of the boom were joined at the main suction point, making the circle complete.
The first cranberry raft was ready for harvesting, and the combination of sunshine, clouds and berries on the water could not have made a more perfect autumn picture for all of us who’d come to watch!
Next on the scene was a huge trailer truck.
It pulled up alongside the machines that were there to prep the cranberries as they came up out of the bog.
A crowd had gathered to watch.
Some were truly adorable.
Others, well, kinda’ noisy and distracting if you ask me! 😉
Just then I noticed one of the harvesters was climbing the ladder on the truck.
While one of the workers who’d manned the booms…
Began raking the cranberries inside the raft, moving the berries gently along toward the suction pump.
The other worker slowly tightened the boom.
From the other side I could see where the leaves and twigs were getting separated from the berries as they were vacuumed up out of the bog.
And as the water was removed from the berries it then got funneled back into the bog. Good recycling!
Then it was time for the berries to get a bath.
A row of powerful washers sprayed the berries as they came through.
I could feel the mist on my face…
It was this worker’s job to keep the berries moving efficiently…
Using his rake to carefully guide them.
As they tumbled forward like a great red waterfall…
Onto the trailer truck below.
Another worker manned the big trailer truck.
Inching it forward as the berries filled the bed.
This would be the cranberries’ ride to the Ocean Spray processing plant for processing and packaging them for juice and cranberry sauce.
As I walked along the edge of the bog, I couldn’t help notice that there was incredible beauty along the outskirts of the harvest as well.
Here is a brief slideshow that shows some of what I found. Such a nice break from the bustle of the berry harvest.
By the time I got back to the trucks, the first load of cranberries had left and everyone had packed up for the day.
The harvest rakes had been loaded onto the truck.
The booms were still, waiting for the next day’s harvest.
The boom spindle had gone quiet, too.
In the waning light, the berries on the water looked to me like something out of a Monet painting, complete with clouds rolling by overhead.
It had been a successful day of harvesting…
I already couldn’t wait for next year’s harvest to begin!