Banff Centre campus has its igloo!

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Banff Martin
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Banff Centre campus has its igloo!

Post by Banff Martin » Tue Dec 01, 2015 8:32 am

And…the first igloo of the season is UP! I’ve returned to building on campus, though this time I’ve chosen a location protected from the sun and hopefully somewhat protected from wind. It is a 9’. I’ve again pre-built a thick pad, about 2’ on the high side and almost 3’ at the entrance. I might use tent pegs to hang a white garbage bag down over the upper 6” of the entrance to reduce cold air movement while keeping the entrance easy. I’ve chosen to cut the door about 6” above the floor to guarantee fresh air. There are 6 cushions for visitors to sit on with dry bottoms.

This igloo was tougher than most others I’ve built, despite having 5 helpers (2 vets on their 2nd season helping). The day started at -17C and reached maybe -3 briefly. My hands got cold despite the heavy mitt & glove. Due to where we were, the sun didn’t warm available snow for long. Thankfully with so many helpers, 2 of them would be conditioning the gathered snow before giving it to the form shoveller. Despite this I still had at least a dozen blocks break on me when releasing the form – the snow forgave little and behaved like sand when there were gaps.

Our company’s union sponsored us with a pizza, hot chocolate & coffee lunch, a new record feast for igloo building! =) Another department also gave us the use of the fire pit 50 meters from the build site plus free wood, which turned out to save the day. My helpers were rotating through warming up at the fire, as they had a hard time staying warm this time.

This igloo isn’t likely to get as many visitors as the last location in the recreation area near my apartment building, but I expect it will be treated better. I’m sure the resident artists, staff and conference guests will get a kick out of it!
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Igloo Ed
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Re: Banff Centre campus has its igloo!

Post by Igloo Ed » Thu Dec 10, 2015 8:01 pm

The snow can get hard to work with at that temp. The coldest I've had was my trip to Yellowstone with -27F. and it was some of the toughest I've built with. But once I get the feel for the snow I'm using, not many blocks break.
The shoveler also needs to be very careful when putting the snow into the form.
Glad to see you built you first igloo this season. I've built two so far and this weekend I am going back to the one I stayed in on Thanksgiving.

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