Winter fun with a child: building an igloo with your own hands

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Not sure how to entertain yourself and your child during the New Year holidays? Build a fairy tale with your own hands. The construction of the mysterious Eskimo igloo is not an easy task, and the more valuable the achieved result will be. Follow our instructions carefully, and the snow hut will definitely decorate the winter courtyard of your summer cottage..

Winter fun with a child. We build an igloo with our own hands

The construction of an igloo Eskimo snow house is quite an interesting idea that will please not only you, but also your children.

Tools that you need to work:

  1. Snow probe.
  2. Saw.
  3. Kingpin.
  4. Roulette.
  5. Rope.
  6. Shovel.
  7. Small bayonet blade.

Looking for snow

The work on the igloo begins with the preparation of the wall material, and this requires a fairly thick layer of snow. Since the optimal dimensions for the block are considered to be 600 × 450 × 200 mm, the thickness of the snow at the mine site theoretically cannot be less than 20 cm, in practice, one should look for a “quarry” of a snow cake at least half a meter deep.

We do all the necessary measurements using a special probe, which can be purchased in the store or from a pre-marked metal rod.

Winter fun with a child. We build an igloo with our own hands

Preparing a quarry

Before starting the manufacture of wall material, a working quarry must first be prepared. For this:

  1. We dig a trench at least 70 cm wide and 60 cm deep.If the thickness of the snow layer does not allow this, then simply to solid ground.

Important! The front wall of our trench should be perfectly flat – these are the edges of our future “bricks”.

  1. We remove all loose snow in the place of production, and level the working area.

Winter fun with a child. We build an igloo with our own hands

Blocks blank

We cut the blocks out of the snow cake entirely, while achieving their maximum ideal geometry. The more accurate the dimensions are, the easier it will be to build. In total, we need about 50 snow bricks for an igloo..

Winter fun with a child. We build an igloo with our own hands

Preparing the construction site

The igloo can only be built in deep snow, no thinner than 40–60 cm, otherwise there will be problems with the “correct” arrangement of the entrance. If there is no such layer of snow in the place planned for construction, it must be made independently, simply by piling a large snowdrift into the required place. Next, we level the construction site and tamp it with snowshoes. For work, a patch with a diameter of 3-4 meters will be enough for us.

First row

Before starting to lay the first row, we make a markup. To do this, in the center of the platform we rammed, we hammer a kingpin and tie a piece of cord or clothesline to it, on which we set aside a distance of 1.05 m. The latter is marked with a knot.

Now, using this “compass”, draw a circle with a diameter of 2100 mm on the site – this will be the outer boundary of the snow wall.

From the inside of the circle, strictly along its perimeter, we build a snow wall exactly one block high. All bricks in the masonry should be piled inward by approximately 17 °, or rather, the angle of inclination is controlled using our measuring rope. Since the igloo has the shape of a regular hemisphere, the measured 1.05 m will be not only the radius of the Eskimo dwelling, but also the distance from the center of the site to any of the points of the snow façade.

Winter fun with a child. We build an igloo with our own hands

When the perimeter is laid out, and the blocks are fitted to each other from the formed snow ring, you need to cut the screw with a hacksaw.

Winter fun with a child. We build an igloo with our own hands

It is this spiral shape of the first row that is the main secret of the northern builders, which Europeans have been solving for more than one century. Masonry along the serpentine is the only option to get a third fulcrum for the “brick” and not fall.

Thus, each block rests not only on the row below it, but also on the side edge behind the standing wall element..

Further laying. Castle stone

Important! Since the bricklayer is inside a closed circuit, an auxiliary is needed for further work. It is he who has to feed the snow blocks.

There is nothing complicated in the spiral masonry itself, you just need to observe a few basic points.

Winter fun with a child. We build an igloo with our own hands

Tilt angle

As before, the angle of inclination is controlled with the help of a piece of rope tied to the kingpin. Only such a measurement will allow us to build the correct dome..

End trimming

For denser masonry, cut the ends of the snow bricks at one angle.

Winter fun with a child. We build an igloo with our own hands

The direction of the cut of the right side of the block is set by the already familiar lacing.

We saw down the left end, focusing on the already finished cut of the previous element. Sawing is performed with an ordinary saw.

Castle stone

The keystone is more difficult to cut. You need to work from the inside, focusing only on the finished working planes of the already laid blocks.

Roy exit

After finishing the masonry work, you can think about the door. It serves as a tunnel under the wall of our snow hut (that’s why deep snow was needed at the construction site), it is this design of the entrance that ensures the free flow of oxygen into the room, but prevents warm air from leaving the house.

From the street, “digging” is ennobled with snow blocks, making from the latter a kind of short snow pipe.

Video: how to build a needle with your own hands

Facade finishing

When the walls are laid out and the entrance is equipped, we trim sharp corners with a saw and seal the masonry joints with loose snow. That’s all.

Winter fun with a child. We build an igloo with our own hands

The igloo can be trusted to finish the facade decoration by nature itself. The very first blizzard will turn our building into a cozy and warm snow house, in which you can wait out almost any frost.

Do not be lazy, build a real Eskimo house out of snow – the children will be grateful to you.

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Comments: 1
  1. Skylar

    That sounds like a great winter activity! How challenging is it to build an igloo? Is it suitable for younger children or is it more suitable for older kids? What materials and tools would we need to make one? Any tips or advice for someone attempting to build an igloo for the first time?

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