So with all the boxing day snow we’ve been having, I decided to show you how to build an igloo; we built this in our drive in 2013:
1. Get some large plastic boxes: Recycling boxes or storage boxes will do just fine for igloo building. A packing crate isn’t very good as it’s not very strong and the sides are full of holes so the snow falls out instead of making solid igloo ice blocks.
2. Fill the boxes with snow. Pack the snow down in the box to make giant bricks of ice. You will need to repeat steps 2 and 3 a lot to make an igloo.
3. Tip the boxes upside down in a circle (leave room for an igloo door) and pat the bottom to get the snow-bricks out (see picture):
4. Once you have a complete layer, do the same above – but don’t line the bricks up (think about how brick walls are built), and make sure the ice blocks are facing slightly inwards so your bricks eventually meet at the top.
5. At the top of the igloo, you have two choices – some people prefer to build a capstone out of ice, to stop everything from falling apart. Otherwise, leave a hole in the top to let air in. We left a hole in the top of ours.
6. We used polystyrene and wire mesh to support the door of our igloo because the size of our ice blocks (and the ambient temperature being only -5 or so) meant the whole structure may have collapsed if we hadn’t used any support. Smaller boxes (than 70 litres) or hardening the blocks of ice using cold water would have both prevented this problem, but it wasn’t cold enough for water-hardening the ice blocks and they just melted when we tried it. For the amount of time we put into building this igloo, I was very happy to complete it and didn’t worry too much about it being 100% Eskimo-worthy. Whether you end up with a perfect building made only of ice or not, you will feel damn proud when you go inside your finished igloo.
7. Now admire your igloo. Can you sleep in an igloo? Definitely! We camped out in ours with some roll mats and a double sleeping bag and it was surprisingly cosy (although we did this wearing serious layers). It also confused the neighbours which was hilarious.
8. Take plenty of photos and share them with me via Twitter @invokedelight so I can see your awesome creations!
Have you built an igloo? Share your igloo pics with me on Twitter! Who needs an expensive package holiday to Iceland? You can do this in your own front garden!