Here in NE Ohio I have seen many sugar maples along the roads with completely dead and crunchy leaves. I believe it is due to lack of water. There are some sugars in my yard that have entire branches with completely dead leaves. The entire branch is dead from what I can tell. These are not leaves turning color early, they are simply suddenly dead. I think wherever you see leaves like this, that entire branch is dead. If the whole tree is like that, Im afraid its pretty much a goner. The trees in my woods look fine.
2.5x10 A&A Raised flue airtight arch, hood (sold)
Smoky Lake 2.5x10 Silverplate evaporator for 2017
952 taps on Vac, 1000+ for 2017
Gast 3040 dry vane vac pump, Lapierre electric releaser
Wes Fab 7" full bank press
Deer Run Maple 375 RO
Syrup made in 2014: 329.5 gallons 2015:305 gallons 2016:316 gallons
Tapping the same trees my great, great and great grandfathers tapped.