maybe some people from the great white north can help me with this
does playing pong hockey mess up your edges really bad?
and how do you know if a pond is frozen enough to play on?
I don't know if there is a proper way, but I often just used to chop through the ice with an axe in various spots to make sure it was thick. Then again if the whole pond is frozen the edges are likely to be thick enough anyway I think.
The other way that I have tried is to walk out as far as you can to see if the ice will start to crack. I would not recomend this method as I was young and dumb when I last tried it, and my dog fell through just ahead of me. The dog got out wet and cold but survived and probably saved me in the end.
Thanks. I guess that means its not good to hear the noises when you walk out on the ice. thanks.
Actually, hearing some noises is pretty normal even for safe ice. The ice will adjust and shift as weight is added to it. However, it is important to know the difference between the normal noises, and the ones that mean trouble.
A few inches of ice is really all you need to be safe to skate on. 5 or six inches and your pretty much safe, depending on the weather. (i've been out with less)
Its also important to be familiar with the lake or pond you are skating on, many times there are natural springs under the water, or water inlets/outlets that will weaken the ice in some areas.
As far as skates go, playing on the pond will definitely hurt your blades. I suggest using an older cheaper pair of skates dedicated to the pond if you can.
I realize not everyone has a beat up pair of skates lying around, but I would just make sure to take care of your blades, wipe them down after skating to get all the dirt and moisture off, and yes you will most likely need to sharpen them more often, and definitely sharpen them before using them in a rink again.
On a pond, besides the dirt that builds up on your blades, there is also a greater potential for getting nicks in the blade, most can be taken care of via sharpening or a sharpening stone though.
Other than that, enjoy the pond. I think you'll find it quite a different experience from playing in a rink.
Playing hockey on a pond was one of the most enjoyable times I've had playing with my friends.
#1 Make sure that you don't throw like, 12 guys onto the ice if it's not that large of a pond. I think you're smart enough to know this anyways...
#2 Yeah, you're skates will take a minor beating. Sharpening them will be fine for them.
#3 The ice will obviously get cut up pretty badly over a period of time. There will be a certain time when you will just have to stop. I'm not sure how close the pond is to your home... But if your garden hose is long enough, or you just bring a bucket of water, you can act as a human zamboni and just cover it, and wait for the next day to play on it. This one pond I used to play on was close enough to my friends house so we could get his hose and spray the ice to fill the deep cuts, then toss snow all over the ice so it could smooth out. The next time we used it, it was reasonably fine. But the best time is the very first time you skate on it.
I'm not sure how hardcore you are about playing on it... But if you get a group of friends, it's gonna be pretty fun.
Cool thanks man. I just moved and have a great pond outside. I think it should be ready for skating today and I am pumped up.
Sucks about the blades, but I dont know if its worth getting another pair just for a few trips out on the pond. Will a lot of sharpening help?
If you really do live in NYC i doubt that pond is ready. A few days of below freezing weather is not enough, especially right when winter starts. I would give it at least a few more days before you skate on it. Its probably only 2-4 inches right now.