Outdoor Rinks Briefing
The Town of Hinton has recently received questions regarding our outdoor rinks, and when they will be ready for play. We've provided the following to help clear up the questions, and to let you know that we hear you, and will be bringing this seasonal service as soon as we can.
We've also posted the below information to our FAQ's section of the website.
The Town of Hinton knows that when winter weather hits, our residents want to get out and enjoy it! We also know that all residents want the investment into outdoor recreation to be used well, which is why we have a couple of procedures to manage when we get to work getting the outdoor rinks into skating shape.
- We require, at minimum, multiple days in a row of cold dry weather. Ideally, we look for minimum highs of -5 during the day (-10 ideally) and much colder at night
- it's also important that no snow falls during that time
- Our ice making procedure uses many thin layers of water left to freeze - not a large amount of water pooling and then freezing. Thin layers create harder ice that will not shatter or crack.
Please also understand that our organization will always prioritize staff for path, sidewalk, and roadway clearing over outdoor rink maintenance. When snow comes, our staff are tasked with high priority activity.
Due to Hinton's climate, it is not uncommon for there not to have been enough consistent cold weather to freeze and maintain the ODR's until late December or early January.
Many users want to help us keep the outdoor rinks in skating shape, and we're grateful for the assist! We welcome your time investment on the outdoor rink surfaces (at your own risk) with clearing snow.
The idea of using the fire department to help get outdoor rinks up and running seems like a natural fit! However, the reality of ice maintenance makes it so this would only be feasible if they were to mist the surface multiple times, over a longer period of time, when it is consistent cold.
Unfortunately, putting inches of water on the outdoor hockey rink and leaving it be is not the correct way for our ice maintenance program.