We love our hockey over here! My husband grew up playing hockey and now our boys love it just the same!
My husband started making an outdoor rink for our family four years ago and it just gets better each year. This year we decided on a permanent location for our rink. Then we turned our storage shed into a ‘skate shack’.
We have already used it so much and had many other family and friends come to enjoy. We spend countless hours as a family after supper outside on the rink and they are memories I wouldn’t change for the world.
Step One- Find and clear a location, this year we had to clear some trees
Step Two- Create an edge with snow to create a border for around your rink
Step Three- Cut the roots/sticks and level the ground
Step Four-Get a silage tarp from a farm supply store and lay that onto your rink, ensuring that you have it far enough over each edge
Step Five- Fill with water, we have the luxury of using water from creek but also have used water trucks to fill
A big problem with your ODR is if it has a leak, it can be extremely frustrating when you go on your ice and it has hollow bits and cracks through! This year we did have a leak somewhere so we ended up going on our tarp and making a border with snow and using water to make it freeze solid. It can be time consuming but it’s worth it to put in the work and time to get it done right.
Another thing you can do is you can make your ice in small layers. Each day flood your rink with a thin layer of water and let it freeze and contunue on that way and then you are able to get nice flat ice.
Our rink has been one of the best things we have ever done. Is it lots of work and shoveling? Yes…. but it also is the place where our boys make the most memories and we get to spend quality time with our family!
Q & A
How much does it cost to build an outdoor rink? Our rink is 50×100 feet, so it is quite large. The cost of our silage tarp was $500. There is not other costs other than lots of hard work!
How cold does it need to be to make our ODR? An ideal temperature to start your outdoor rink is below -10 to -25 degrees Celsius. We have done it when it is colder but it makes it a bit trickier and freezes a bit too fast
Do we need hot water to flood the rink? No, you do not need hot water, we flood straight from our well and it works perfect
Do I need boards for my outdoor rink? You can make a great outdoor ice rink surface to skate on without rink boards. But if you plan on playing hockey it is nice to contain the pucks! If you have only a snow perimeter, pucks get lost in the snow.