Solve it Sunday: A Bit of Polish

Hello dear readers, I hope you put on your puzzle solving hats, because I am back for another Solve it Sunday!

This one might be tricky for those who don’t live with snow in the winter, but you might know the answer anyways.

Here is the riddle, and as always, the solution is in the comments:

You will most likely have noticed that polished floors are considerably more slippery than rough (or fluffy) ones. So should it not follow that smooth ice is more slippery than bumpy ice? If you ever have occasion to pull a sledge, however, you will discover that it moves more easily over uneven ice than over smooth ice. You may also have observed that roughened ice is trickier to walk on than glossy ice.

Why do you think that is?

One thought on “Solve it Sunday: A Bit of Polish


    Ice is not actually a slippery substance. However, its melting point drops when it is pressurized. So when you stand on it – or pull a sledge’s runner over it – a small amount melts, and it is the resulting meltwater that is slippery. A rough surface reduces the number of points of contact between the ice and the runner (or foot), increasing the pressure each one is under, and thereby increasing the amount of water produced. In very cold temperatures, where body pressure is insufficient to bring the ice above melting point, ice is no more slippery to walk on than stone is.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: