November 26, 2021
It’s’ that time of year…the first snow has fallen, and the cooler temperatures are upon us. This seems like the perfect time to go skating outdoors. We would LOVE for you to do that and we will soon enough, but we’re at the mercy of the current forecast. It’s important to note we don’t have mechanical cooling for our skating surfaces so we are completely dependent on Mother Nature. Two of the main considerations to think about before creating the rinks are temperature and precipitation. A good rule of thumb is no positive temperatures and lows of at least -7 degrees Celsius for 7 days. Obviously, the less snow the better as it acts as an insulator. Right now, we are still enjoying some higher temperatures that prevent solid, good ice from being built. Building solid, beautiful ice, can take many hours over a period of several days.
Our land-based mini-rink is filled like a bathtub because it is completely sealed by the liner. This allows for the kick plates to be frozen tight to the boards and a solid base for our machines to resurface. We must have a minimum of 8” of ice to ensure the liner doesn’t get punctured from the weight of the Zamboni cracking the ice. This will be the first surface we begin flooding, hopefully starting the first week of December. It allows for slightly warmer building temperatures as the white liner is able to reflect the majority of the light.
The pleasure skating rink over the concrete pad (Jelly Bean) is built in layers, and each layer needs to be frozen (bonded) before the next goes down. If temperatures are too warm, with the dark pad beneath, you will lose the bond due to melting. If this occurs, air trapped under the ice either needs to be removed or ice quality will be sacrificed. If temperatures are too cold, you are likely to have issues with shell ice but this typically doesn’t happen unless it gets below -15 degrees Celsius.
As a reminder, the lake ice is currently closed to all residents. When it is safe to do so we will begin taking measurements and closely monitor the ice thickness and quality. Not all ice is created equal and this is a consideration when determining the ice bearing capacity.
We know you are excited: we are too! As soon as the rinks are ready, we will announce it on our website, and social media.