Saturday, July 25, 2015

The old saying of "it never rains but pours" can hardly ring truer at the moment.  After finally drying out earlier this week the courses have received 110mm with a totally unexpected 19mm falling on Friday night.  I got the photo below last Monday and thought that the rain gauge that the Kookaburra is sitting on was pretty much only good for birds to perch on but how wrong was that later in the week?

Kookaburra sits on the empty rain gauge!

Motorised buggies have been off for the week pretty much and it is a call that I am entrusted to make and one that causes much angst as the effect on players golfing enjoyment and the club's finances are seriously affected.  I generally have a look at the courses the night before while there is still some daylight then reassess at about 4.45 am the next morning.  The West course is generally a fairly easy decision with holes 2, 12, 13, 14 and 16 the first ones to be looked at.  On the River course holes 1 and 9 are always a problem but I then look at the rest of the fairways and if a majority are going to sustain damage from motorised buggy traffic then the decision is based on that.  The time of year is also a factor as at the moment the potential for the courses to dry out quickly is minimal as is the potential for recovery from damage which again at this time of year is minimal.  The days forecast is also considered with respect to further rainfall.  The status of motorised buggies is updated by 5.30 am on the website under the "course conditions" tag at the top of the page.  Please be assured that it is not a decision that is taken lightly and has caused me many a sleepless night.

The deep aerator was out during the week trying to move some of the puddles and surface water but with little success particularly with more rain coming down.  The couple of solid tine aerations that the greens received have helped them dry out and the putting surface is very good considering the weather.  13R green has not been mown for two weeks and is still struggling with the shade and 17W is still powering along and the Tifeagle impresses me more and more by the day.  The turf on the green is only five and a half months old but is withstanding the play very well given the time of year.

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