For the past 7 or so years, I've put up a killer rink, only to have a couple really good years due to my location. I live in Southwest Michigan. They're calling for a hellava winter for us this year though and my budget has been tight due to a car accident and some other things going on in life. When I lived in the UP, I helped out a friend build a natural rink with just snow and water and it worked really well, mainly because UP. However, with the forecast for this year, I'm curious if I can make it happen.
I never really get a good freeze until we have a bunch of snow anyway and the weather is in the 20F for awhile. Any thoughts on doing this down here in the LP? Any pointers? Below is my plan of attack if/when the right weather shows up.
- Snow Starts
- Tamp/roll down to a flat surface
- Bring snow from other parts of yard and even neighbors if needed and create a solid thick base.(This may even help freeze faster since I normally drop the liner on grass that's still warm)
- Once I have a good snow base, put my water hose on light spray and spray light layers and allow to freeze before spraying another layer.
- After a few layers, make some snow walls around the rink and spray them as well.
- After a dozen or so mist layers, start filling 1/8" at a time until I get 4-6" Ice thickness.
- Skate and play!!
I have a homebonie(PVC) to finetune my surface once I get the correct thickness. Plan on getting some cheap yardsticks and placing in each corner so I know how high my ice is. My yard has a small slop, but nothing major. If we get a good solid cold winter, I may also throw up some of my board brackets along the low end of my rink to help support the weight of the ice in the event it starts to slide for any reason.
In the springtime, I plan to break up the ice as much as possible while it melts to avoid any flooding of my or my neighbors lawns. I also have 2-3 pumps to pump out the water as it melts, as long as it melts top down.
Should I have any concerns? Any comments or suggestions?