When I come across a cold Minecraft biome I always get excited about finding ice.
Ice is a solid semi-transparent block found in cold variants of rivers and oceans that is well known for it’s “slippery” surface.
When walking or running on ice you’ll find yourself struggling to halt or even make sharp turns.
However, if you aren’t in danger, this isn’t as much of a problem as it is just a ball of fun! Knowing how to mine and make Ice can be of great help not only for builds, but also for fun new attractions in your Survival world.
As I have mentioned, ice is pretty slippery in Minecraft, but did you know that you can place and ride a boat on ice as well? The fun part of this is that the boat will move incredibly fast along the surface.
This makes ice a perfect material for something like an ice skating rink or a boat race track. If you can mine enough of it to make packed ice you can make high speed roads to far away places.
Just keep in mind that it will make you move at incredible speeds, so know when to get out of a boat in time so you wouldn’t fly off your highway.
It is a perfect alternative to speedy railroads which are much more expensive to build and it’s still faster than mounts.
Ice also stacks a lot better than water buckets and it can be used in building and exploring where you might need a lot of water.
Where to Get Ice in Minecraft
Ice can be found in all snowy biomes with water in them such as snowy slopes, most commonly as part of rivers and oceans, but also in biomes like: ice spikes, icebergs, and frozen peaks.
It can also be scarcely found in igloos as part of the structure. You can find one block on each side of the igloo acting as a window. The igloos spawn in all of the cold biomes except for ice spikes.
Among the regular ice there’s a chance to find packed or even blue ice.
To harvest you will need the silk touch enchantment, preferably on a pickaxe as it breaks it the fastest.
Otherwise, if you break regular ice without the enchantment it won’t drop anything. It can turn into water as long as there is a solid block right underneath it, but otherwise it will drop nothing.
Packed and blue ice can also only be mined with the silk touch enchantment, but unlike normal ice neither will spawn water no matter the conditions.
Making Ice in Minecraft
Ice can only be made in the very same kinds of biomes where it can be found.
It needs to be cold enough to snow for ice to form in Minecraft. This means anywhere where snow falls instead of rain or any of the cold biomes is where you want to be making and farming your ice.
To make ice you will need water and likely a lot of it.
Source water blocks will turn into ice if the area is cold enough or if it is snowing, under the condition there are no strong light sources nearby. Anything with a light level above 11 will melt ice and snow alike.
Minecraft Packed Ice Recipe
- 9 Ice blocks
Packed ice is slightly darker than regular ice blocks. It’s just as slippery as ice, but it doesn’t melt when placed near bright light sources or outside of cold biomes.
To make packed ice you need a crafting table and 9 blocks of Ice for a single packed ice block.
Blue ice is simply an upgraded version of packed ice.
It has the same properties as packed ice, except it is much more slippery and it is crafted pretty much in a similar fashion. However, for blue ice instead of regular ice you need 9 packed ice.
Minecraft Blue Ice Recipe
- 9 Packed Ice blocks
As you can see you need quite a bit of ice to craft enough packed ice, and even more of it to craft a good amount of blue ice.
Speedy boat highways and skating rinks are great, but unless you have an efficient way of farming ice, building any of that is going to certainly be a challenge.
Farming Ice in Minecraft
Making an ice farm in Minecraft may seem a little odd at first, but I’m going to show you it is very simple.
You can find a perfect spot to build your mine or you can simply make it entirely from scratch. Your most important component of the farm that makes it work is water and cold air. Water is the easy part.
Simply find a body of Water in a cold biome you wish to use or bring your own water buckets to make a body of water. Keep those buckets on hand however in case you cause an overflow and need to get rid of the water from where it shouldn’t be.
Remember that without the cold the water will not be freezing.
I keep my ice farms pretty simple and small. I square out an area using oak planks or cobblestone. Using regular slabs of my choice I make a diagonal line over the mine. These slabs are very important.
This is where you will be placing down your source water blocks. They’re important because they will help guarantee that not all of your blocks get frozen in case you walk away.
If all your source blocks get frozen, you have to entirely refill the farm.
If you built everything right you can sit back and watch your water slowly freeze. Once it’s frozen pick up your pick axe with the silk touch enchantment and mine away.
For as long as the water in the slabs isn’t removed or frozen the farm will refill itself with full source blocks and freeze again for repeated use.
In case you have to move far away to the point your farm won’t be loading, it might be good to find a way to keep a Chunk loaded in Minecraft to keep a steady supply of ice forming.