Are You Ready for Fall Golf?
As October comes to an end and Daylight Savings Time makes way for winter, Fall Golf Season is an important time of year for evaluation of your golf season as well as start preparation for the next season ahead. Fall Golf is a time of year when the weather is absolutely fantastic to play the game without having to put on layers of clothing, or being worried that the course closed. It is also a time when you can retrospectively look back at your accomplishments and grade those accomplishments against the goals you set this past spring. But most importantly, Fall Golf Season is one of the most enjoyable times to play golf. The added colors nature provides can create the perfect backdrop for an enjoyable match with friends or family. And if you properly prepare, Fall Golf can me that much more enjoyable.
Tips for Fall Golf Season
Bring the Camera – As much as a cell phone is a nuisance on the course at times, during the Fall Golf Season, it think it is the quintessential piece of equipment you will need when playing, so long as you do not hold up play. Fall provides the most vivid and captivating scenes we see all year and golf courses are not immune of the breath-taking scenery that makes Fall Golf a special time of year. There has been many a time my shot lands in a position I was not planning on and as I look around, I notice a part of the golf course I have never seen before. The contrasting colors of Fall Golf bring out the best of the Golf Course Superintendent’s work as well as the Golf Course Architect. A couple of photos I have taken in the past while playing Fall Golf have ended up being framed and hung in my office as well as in the pro shops I have worked in. If you are into landscape architecture and how fall colors enhance its beauty, be sure you have plenty of memory in that phone to capture the vistas you have never noticed before.
Take an Extra Club – Remember that as temperatures fall, so can the distance your ball travels. Percentages vary based upon which manufacturer or research company you might have loyalty to or trust. But you still have to plan for each shot being just a hair shorter than what you may have grown accustom to. And if you are adding layers of clothing during an unusually cool morning, this will restrict your rotation a bit. Be sure to consider adding one more club than normal to any shot you are unsure of hitting. Considering is not doing. Considering is taking in all the elemental variables you are facing as well as any situational conditions regarding the shot you face. Doing so allows you a better chance of hitting the green, carrying the obstacle, or laying up to a yardage you are most comfortable with.
Check the Wind – As like spring when the earth and air temperatures tend to vary more, creating increased wind conditions, be sure to keep this in mind during Fall Golf Season. Although you may not feel the wind standing in a fairway, check the tree tops around you to determine not only that there is a wind, but how strong and from which direction the wind is traveling. So many times I have seen golfers forget about this weather variable simply because they could not “feel” the wind from where they hit their shot.
Extra Items – Have you ever caught yourself midway through a golf round, needing something that is not in your bag? Each season of golf, including Fall Golf, brings its own unique needs to the table you must prepare for. Over the years, I have found myself putting a warm hat, an extra light sweater, and a couple of hand warmers in my golf bag, just in case I get caught on the course and the weather changes. I have also seen others put lotion in their bag, and use it to keep their skin moist. Another item people have told me they put in their bag is a couple extra golf balls. Sometimes the fallen leaves can innocently camouflage the great sot you just hit.
Fall Golf is one of my favorite times to play golf for all the reasons I mentioned and more. Don’t put those clubs away just yet, even if you have just experienced an early dusting of the winter white stuff. If you do, you will miss what is arguably one of the best times to experience the game.
* – Photo of Black Oak Golf Club courtesy of Russell Kirk/www.golflinksphotography.com