Lesson #57: 15,000 Gallons

My dad expressed concern at the weekend about how other topics were quickly overtaking hockey. Clearly I am failing him as the sports-loving daughter of a native of a hockey-mad Canadian city. And, given that the first of the Olympic hockey games will take place a week from today (yay!), I thought I’d indulge him…

Autobiographical note: I used to have a job, part of which entailed building and painting an ice rink for a professional — that’s their term, not mine — hockey team. Building a rink is basically laying down a layers of water with white paint in it on a chilled concrete floor and then spending two hours waiting for it to freeze. And that goes on for about a quarter inch. At that point, you get to bring in the whole crew to paint the lines and put down the logos (which are usually mesh that can be frozen right into the ice), which is cold because you spend a lot of time sitting or lying on the ice getting that done and then shaving a layer of ice away if there’s paint where there shouldn’t be. And then it’s just slowly flooding it with a hose. Over and over and over again for about a day.*

I was thinking about this the other day and realized that I have absolutely no idea how much water that actually is.  So I went looking. Google pops up some ridiculous answers. Like the one that said 2 billion. It turns out that for an NHL sized rink (200′ x 85′) it takes 15,000 gallons of water to make an inch of ice.**

*A great page detailing how ice is made can be found here.

**More information about hockey ice can be read here.

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