Minneapolis so cold that NHL is warming ice for Winter Classic

The NHL Winter Classic in Minneapolis has set the record as the coldest game in NHL history, with a temperature of about -7 degrees when the puck dropped for the Minnesota Wild vs St. Louis Blues at 6:20 p.m. CT. The temperature was expected to be about -4 degrees and the wind chill was expected to about -18 at the time of the game.

FOX 9’s Mace Michaels is the game day meteorologist for Target Field. He spoke with Minnesota Twins head groundskeeper Larry DeVito who said the NHL will be warming the ice for the Winter Classic. The ideal surface temperature for the ice is 22 degrees, or else it gets too brittle.

Warming the ice for Winter Classic

According to NHL.com: "The floor of the Winter Classic ice rink is made of 283 aluminum ice pans. A mobile refrigeration unit pumps glycol through pipes to the pans and back to the truck to transfer heat… When the air temperature is above the optimum ice temperature, the glycol and aluminum pans transfer heat away from the ice. But when the air temperature is below the optimum ice temperature, it transfers heat to the ice."

LIVE CAMERA: IDS Center (West) looking at Target Field

The NHL is using two custom made heaters for the Winter Classic in Minnesota. Crews are able to keep the temperature within a half-degree of their settings. 

Keeping hockey fans warm

  • Blankets will be allowed inside Target Field
  • Hand warmers will be provided
  • Heated areas will be accessible to fans

MORE: Fans brave the cold for Winter Classic

Wind chill advisory

Wind chill advisories are in effect for most of Minnesota and western Wisconsin. You can check active alerts at fox9.com/weather-alerts and on the FOX 9 Weather App.