Thousands of skaters flock to frozen Trout Lake on Saturday (PHOTOS, VIDEOS)

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Kenneth Chan Jan 07, 2017 9:09 pm 3,263

Those who satisfied their outdoor skating bug on Saturday and over the last few days at Trout Lake are lucky to have already done so as the ice surface will be closed until further notice beginning on Sunday due to safety reasons and warming temperatures.

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Several thousand people descended on East Vancouver’s John Hendry Park throughout Saturday to enjoy a rare outdoor frozen pond skate that hasn’t been experienced in the city in 20 years.

Heavy foot and vehicle traffic circulated the residential neighbourhood that surrounded the park throughout the clear, sunny day. Crowds of skaters and people watchers gradually grew, thickening by noon and reaching thousands of by mid-afternoon.

Thousands of skaters on the ice at the same. (Photo by: Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

Traffic congestion in the neighbourhood surrounding the park due to crowds at Trout Lake. (Photo by: Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

In contrast, at the very most, there were just hundreds on the ice at anytime over the last few days since Wednesday, when the Vancouver Park Board covered the ‘Danger’ signs and announced that Trout Lake was officially open for ice skating.

The ice thickness is sampled daily using drills, and the last known measurement puts the ice thickness at just under eight inches – well above the minimum five inch thickness required for a safe ice surface for skating. But this does not for the weight and any stress the ice has been experiencing from heavy usage.

Lost Lagoon in Stanley Park and the pond at Vanier Park remain unsafe due to thin ice.

The Park Board will reassess the condition of Trout Lake’s ice surface on Sunday and determine whether skating can resume on Monday. Officials initially hoped they could keep the ice surface open through the weekend.

Hockey rinks, ovals, and more

People of all ages, including many children, were seen skating on the ice today, and there were also plenty of dogs with their owners.

People shovelled snow to the side, making snow banks nearly half a foot high in some areas, to create clear and relatively smooth ice skating surfaces. In fact, there were dozens of rinks ranging in size from an average backyard-sized rink for families and their young children to rinks as large as a tennis court where a 10-person hockey game was being played.

Some rinks were interconnected with narrow skating paths from one rink to another. And on the eastern side of the link, some people had even shovelled snow aside to create a skating oval about 80 metres in length. The oval was one of the most popular areas with dozens of skaters circling the surface in a calm and orderly fashion.

At last count just after sunset, there were still roughly 1,000 people on the ice.

Photo by: Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive

Photo by: Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive

Photo by: Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive

Photo by: Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive

Jacob riding Lee’s ice contraption #winteraf #hedidthattho

A photo posted by @kierrasage on

Winter x Summer

A photo posted by Ana Foger (@anafoger) on

#makingfriends #skatinginvancouver #sunnydays #hockeygirls

A photo posted by Erin Stretten (@sunshine_nopants) on

The lake is frozen to the core. _______________________________________________________ #getoutthere #vscovisuals #eastvan #notforsquares #rising_masters #explorevancouver #explorebc #vancouverisawesome #calmversation #happy_space #justgoshoot #beautifulbc #troutlake #frozenlake

A photo posted by Soph Von Corner (@sophiesafari) on

What a beauty day.

A photo posted by Shawn Lawrence (@el_shawno) on

Skating on Trout lake today in Vancouver. It doesn’t happen often in Vancouver so it was the place to be today! And what a beautiful setting! Stunning! The last time I skated outdoors in Vancouver was in the 80s on lost lagoon! We didn’t do much skating as it was pretty bumpy but was a beautiful day to wander about on the ice! #troutlake #vancity #outdooriceskating #vancouver #whataday

A video posted by Christie Saunders (@christie.saunders) on

A video posted by Geoff Petrie (@ohgeoffro) on

Wintering in #vancouver

A photo posted by Heron Hanuman (@heronhanuman) on

Shovel and skates

A photo posted by A L E X I A (@_nymphilia_) on

NO DIVING

A photo posted by Steffanie Ling (@steffbao) on

This is a first. East van winter wonderland & frozen trout lake.

A photo posted by Lee (@lee.fromnz) on

Being Canadian park… #frozenlake #vancouverisawesome #skating #hockey #canadian

A video posted by Ian Cumming (@vontecleaver) on

Trying pond skating for the first time ever, what a beaut, eh? #canadiantothemax #shinny #snowmeggedon2016 #greatwhitenorth

A video posted by Maya (@iheartlazers) on

Guess we achieved Canadian status

A photo posted by Taylor Chivers (@taychivs) on

Glad everyone got the memo.

A photo posted by Jaclyn McClements (@dontknowjack) on

Home sweet home. #troutlake #backyard #canadieneh

A video posted by Sarah Dee (@deevsdiddy) on

Trout Lake right now

A video posted by Angela Stoner (@onmywalktoday) on

Now I understand just how brilliant a zamboni is! On the other hand, scraping the ice appears to be an excellent warm up before a hockey match! #frozentroutlake #ohcanada

A video posted by Katie McKenzie (@yvrmama89) on

Vancouver truly feels like a part of Canada with this shortened winter. Snow is the country-wide equalizer! #pondhockey #canada #winter #vancouver

A photo posted by Gaëtan (@gaetanharris) on

More than thousand people skate on frozen Trout Lake. #troutlake #frozentroutlake

A photo posted by @gourmetvancouver on

Everyone else had the same idea ⛸

A photo posted by Katie Holmes (@ktholmes) on

#troutlake #vancouver #hockey #beautifulbc

A photo posted by Shannon Lum (@xannonlum) on


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Kenneth Chan
National Features Editor at Daily Hive, the evolution of Vancity Buzz. He covers stories pertaining to local architecture, urban issues, politics, business, retail, economic development, transportation, infrastructure, and anything else that makes a difference in the lives of Canadians. Kenneth is also a Co-Founder of New Year's Eve Vancouver. Connect with him at kenneth[at]dailyhive.com

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