Not fit for play
We have had our course closed the last few days as heavy rains have precluded play on the course. When we close the close it is always with regret that our members cannot play. Various areas of the course get sodden and accumulate surface water. The 16th, at the 150m mark, the 1st just over the bridge, the 8th around the green and the 18th just before the green are a few of the areas where water drains away less quickly. The system we have is the greens staff inspects the course each morning and texts the Captain with their view about the course conditions with a recommendation. Following this a decision is made whether the course will be open and, if open, will we be able to have carts. Often the captain will visit the course to ascertain for himself what the conditions are like, but virtually 100% of the time the recommendation of the greens staff will be the same as the the decision. During sustained wet weather we have more time to make a decision and discussions are held in the office about the best way to treat our course. This time the decision was made to close the course on Monday and then, after discussion and observing the continuing weather conditions, it was extended until Thursday. On Wednesday afternoon, as the photo shows, there was still water lying on the 18th. (One of the other indicators is when the cups are full of water on some greens. This shows that the greens cannot drain the water away.)
On Tuesday, during a course inspection, I took some photos of the ephemeral waterways on the course. These are working exactly as designed. The subterranean pipe carries the quiescent water during normal periods keeping the hazard dry. When it starts raining the flow rises and the pipe continues to carry the water until it reaches its maximum capacity.When the amount of water entering the waterway continues to rise the water overflows onto the surface of the hazard and the increased flow is carried away.
We lost a magnificent gum tree on the lefthand side of the 6th. The photo below shows Matt Morris standing in front of it, to give it some scale to the size of the tree. During these wet periods these large trees, seemingly in good health and stable, can be lost. The wet weather, sodden ground and a little wind claimed this tree.