How To Build A Backyard Ice Rink
With winter in full-swing, more and more folks are looking to bring Canada’s national sport into their own backyards by building a backyard rink. While this may seem like a daunting task to some, have no fear, we are here to help you create your own backyard House of Green!
***Before starting to build your outdoor ice rink, it is important to check all City of London by-laws to ensure that you are complying and won’t face any future issues***
Step 1. Backyard Space & Grade
Before starting on your rink, it is important to decide on the size of the rink that you want to build to ensure you have adequate space, but just as important is to look at the grade of your backyard. If you live on a hill, a toboggan track might be more realistic than a rink.
Once you have determined the size of the rink you are going to make, they next step is to clear the space of snow, sharp rocks and any other objects that might get in the way of your skating fun.
Step 2. Building the Rink
To build the frame of the rink, you can either choose to use wood boards or PVC pipe. Both have advantages and are relatively easy to construct. The important part with both is to ensure that you have a frame that is the correct size for your space and will hold the water in while it freezes. Once you have a frame in place you can add a tarp that covers the entire space before filling it with water.
Step. 3 Making the Ice
Now that you have the frame constructed and the tarp laid out over a level space free from debris, it is time to add water and watch the magic happen! Using a standard garden house, fill the inside of the frame with water and let freeze. You may have to repeat this step a few times to get the ice thick enough for skating. While the temperature must be below zero for the water to freeze, you want to stay away from days where the forecast calls for snow, otherwise you could end up with a thin layer of ice and a lot of snow piled on top.
Step 4 – Maintaining the Ice
Once you have built your backyard rink of dreams, maintenance becomes important to keeping it ready for the next big game. Following each skate, you should give the surface a quick refresh to keep the ice level. Falling snow should also be cleared off quickly to keep it from adding to your rink. Pay close attention to the weather forecast as warmer temperatures or freezing rain can also cause issues.
There are several tools available on the market that can also be used to help you keep your rink in game-ready condition.
Step 5 – HAVE FUN!
Winter is inevitable in Canada so why not make the most of it and create lasting memories while you are at it!
If after reading this you think that a backyard rink might not be for you, remember that you can always rent the ice at Budweiser Gardens for pick-up hockey, birthday parties, family skates and much more.
Click HERE for more information.