In the decade or so I have lived on the Iron Range, I think I can safely say that this June has been among one of the wettest ones I have had the pleasure of being around. The timing of these rain events has been horrible with much of the rain occurring during our busiest times. Getting work done in these conditions has been a real challenge and has set us back in some areas while we simply wait for conditions to improve. One area where we have been set behind by the weather is on putting greens. Normally by this time of the year we have already topdressed greens (added a light layer of sand) twice. We were able to get out on greens on June 17 for the first time after spring aerification and the resultant increase in putting green quality has been quite noticeable. We plan to continue this process on a bi-weekly basis to maintain quality putting surfaces-all we need is the cooperation of the weather.
One of the biggest complaints from players is when we are forced to implement a cart path only ruling during wet conditions. This is not something that we enjoy doing-in fact we hate to do anything which makes a round tougher for our customers. But when widespread areas appear like the photo below, we have little choice but to mitigate the damage that can be done. We need to consider the future condition of the golf course.
Adjacent to 10 cart path, June 2014
Even with our efforts to control damage, many of our cart path edges are now damaged due to cart traffic from both players and staff as the picture below illustrates:
Cart path edge on 5
Our request from you-our customer-is that you consider the golf course and try to stay out of wet areas if possible. Stay on the higher, firmer parts of fairways and avoid driving through the wettest areas adjacent to drainage basins. Stay on the cart path as much as possible-even on days when you may leave the cart path. This kind of attention from all players will result in a reduction of ugly areas like the photo above-and ultimately result in a better experience for everyone.
See you on the golf course.
Vincent Dodge CGCS