I’m sure this is a touchy subject over the last 24-36 hours. Falling victim to this storm myself and after spending 2+ hours on the rink cleaning this AM, I’m hoping some lessons learned are not to late for any of you. Golden rule #1 with rink maintenance: if you start something, you need to commit to it and see it through. You don’t want a half cleaned rink.
Bottom line, slush stinks. Period. If you can get on your rink to get rid of it, do so. Otherwise, it will make for more work later on to get your ice surface back to “normal”.
But if you can’t get on your ice, LEAVE IT ALONE. The snow will weigh down whatever ice you have, causing water to come up around the edges. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as its giving you a deeper ice base while essentially flooding what’s on now on top (the snow). So let it be. Slush actually freezes faster too, so you might be able to get on the ice sooner. But not to skate – you will then need to repair what surface you have been dealt with by Mother Nature at that point. Don’t do anything else in attempts to melt whatever small snow is on there…just let things run their course. If you feel obligated to fish out some leaves or wade around in ankle deep slush, then be sure to smooth over your tracks; if those freeze as is, you’ll have fun later – NOT!
If your ice isn’t strong enough to get on, but its starts snowing, you can minimize the slush affect by using what’s called a roof rake, bought from your local Home Depot or Lowes. This can be used to remove snow from middle of the rink when you can’t step foot on it. I have never used one personally, but have heard good reviews that they work well for snow but not so much for slush. Snow comes before slush, so if you have a roof rake, use it early and often. Remember, be committed.
Hind sight, I should of been more diligent taking the snow off last night. I did an early clean off around dinner time, and made quick work of it with the SnowPusherLite (squeegee end, even though it was just snow at that point). I can skate on my rink, but still have a good amount of water underneath. Woke up this am to prob 2/3 of the surface area, concentrated around the edges, being about 3″ of slush. The rest 1/3 of the rink was snow on top, slush on bottom. I rolled up my sleeves and shoveled it off; snowblowers don’t work on this stuff, and if it froze as is it would be tough work later on. We had our first skate earlier yesterday, so had a taste of how good the ice was – didn’t want to lose that. Anyway, I got it all off, had a pretty smooth surface and took a couple of rounds SnowPusherLite shovel to move the remaining slushy water around, in a attempt for a quasi resurface job; but it was still really wet. Then it started snowing again. A zero sum game, so I’ll deal with removing (small amount of) slush again tonight.
Ah, the joys of rink ownership.