Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Potential Golf Course Pitfalls

The golf course can have a variety of potential pitfalls in place. Golf course designers make use of a few traps for golf balls that will likely increase golf scores should they be landed in. These are a few of the potential golf course pitfalls that golf courses likely will and could include.


To begin with the sand bunkers, which are the most prevalent golf course pitfall that are included on golf courses. Sand bunkers are included on almost every hole of the course, and can come in various sizes and depth. There are really two types of bunkers, those of the green-side bunkers and fairway bunkers. The difference lies in their relative position on the golf hole, with the green-side bunkers located around the greens, and fairway bunkers which are located along the fairway. These bunkers are strategically placed by course designers, and while smaller shallower bunkers are a relatively minor pitfall, deep bunkers can be harder to escape from smoothly. Even if you do not land in a bunker, it may be that a bunker can prevent a chip to the green and require an alternative approach. For sand bunkers, there are sand wedges which are clubs specifically designed to assist with escaping the bunkers.


The water pitfall is one that is included with lakes, ponds, and creeks included on the golf course. These are not included on every golf course, however on those that do have water and lakes can be one of the biggest golf course pitfalls. This is because if a ball lands in a lake or creek then it is more than likely that it will be gone, and you will likely have to drop ball and add a stroke to the score-card. If a ball lands in very shallow water then it may be possible to avoid the penalty, but this is less than likely. As such, water and lakes is something to aim well clear off, even if that means a shorter distance shot.

Trees can come in various shapes and sizes, and all golf courses will surely have trees on a few holes. Most will surround the golf hole, meaning that any shot that strays some way left or right of the fairway could end up landing close to the trees. In such an event, if a ball lands very close to a tree trunk then this could prevent a standard swing, and in the worst cases make the ball unplayable. As such, the trees are very much something that golfers need to take into account.


Like trees, most golf courses will have at least a few bushes surrounding the holes. Golf holes that have many surrounding bushes can be higher scoring holes with balls lost in the bushes. If a ball lands in a bush, then almost certainly it will be unplayable, even if found. Even if a ball lands close to a bush, then this could still have an impact on the swing. So bushes are in some ways comparable to water pitfalls, in that you can expect that if your balls land in them they will be lost and result in a penalty stroke.

Rough grass:

Rough grass is really longer grass than surrounds the fairway or green. Overall, the rough can be short rough, or longer rough. Overall, in most cases if a ball lands in the rough then it will likely still be playable. However, it may require a number of potential adjustments in terms of club selection and swing

Overall, these are the most standard golf course pitfalls that will be included on the golf course. Bunkers, the rough, lakes and creeks, bushes, and trees are all potential pitfalls on golf courses and holes. Such golf course pitfalls could all potentially inflate golf scoring.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Golf during the off-season

November means the golf season is all but over. However, that does not mean that all golf courses close, and so golfing can continue during the off-season. So, why not?

Certainly, the climate will drop a few degrees as winter sets in. Still, in certain parts of the US you can certainly expect mild climates to remain in those southern US states such as Florida, Arizona etc. Beyond winter, as spring emerges you can expect milder climates still before the golf season really begins.

However, playing golf in colder weather may still require warmer clothing. A good golf jumper should be okay. In addition to this, vests, gloves, and woolly hats are recommended. In addition to this, a thermos flask with tea or cocoa will also be worth taking onto the golf course.

You can also expect that golf course conditions will likely be wetter. That is to say, with annual precipitation greater beyond summer and during the winter months. If the weather is colder still, frost can also make golf courses damp. Damp golf courses will mean that the ball will not roll as far, and so in this respect less distance. For putting, putts can be under-hit and missed on damp greens.

The chances of downpours may also be greater off-season. In this respect, if it starts to rain heavily you might have to abandon the course. Take an umbrella out onto the golf course, and as a rule: do not play if overhead clouds are very grey.

Despite this, there are a few advantages to playing golf during the off-season. Some golf courses may reduce rates during the off-peak periods. As such, off-season golf can be a more cost-effective option.

During the off-season golf courses you can expect the golf courses to be more empty. Emptier golf courses means that you can play round the course more quickly. Alternatively, quite the opposite if no golfers are behind the requirements to reduce slow play are less. So overall, golf courses will be easier to get on to.

Still, if you must not play on a golf course during the off-season, then ranges are a better alternative. Whether it's pouring or not, golf ranges will be open. As such, this can be the next best thing to playing on course.

So, playing golf in the off-season has its advantages and disadvantages. For sure, weather conditions can vary, and golf courses will certainly be wetter during the off-season. However, during the early spring you can expect more sunshine, and potential discounts during the off-season