Golf In Michigan In February

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Huron Hills, Second Hole, February 6, 2016

El Nino has produced some unusual weather conditions this year, as I found myself playing golf in Michigan in February.

Because temperatures were not slated to break 40 today, I supposed that I might find myself alone on the course. As it turns out, Huron Hills was quite busy, with players on every one of the seven holes that were open.

I never dreamed that I’d need to wait on a tee box in February.

Apparently the recreation department of the city of Ann Arbor had not anticipated a surge in interest in golf either, for the clubhouse was closed with just this sign:

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No Staff On Duty. Please “Putt” $5 in $ Box on patio.

A huge bonus for the day was that I ran into a friend of mine on the first tee. He and his partner were just finishing their seventh, and I joined them for their second seven. When we finished that, I played two more holes so I could get in a proper nine.

Golf on a cold February day presents some significant challenges. The first is driving a tee into the frozen ground. I had forgotten to bring along the ice-pick that I usually pack on such days, so I was reduced to grinding the plastic in as far as it would go — which was  not very far at all.

Balls don’t travel nearly as far in such weather, so much of the round was a matter of trying to figure out just how many clubs to add to each shot. Two turned out to be a good number; three when playing into the wind.

Compounding the ball distance issues were the layers of clothing necessary to stay warm on a cold, windy day. I had on a UnderArmour Cold Gear Compression Mock, but decided after a couple of holes that while warm enough, it did too much to restrict my swing.

Ice had locked the flagstick on the first hole in place.

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The flagstick is frozen to the cup.

The other sticks could be pulled, but were full of ice chunks and icy water. Retrieving a ball from the cup was an unpleasant experience.

Ice on the Huron River from behind the sixth green at Huron Hills.

I did not play well, but it really did not matter. I’ve now played golf in Michigan in February and in January, which is a good start toward my goal of playing in every month of 2016.

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2 thoughts on “Golf In Michigan In February”

  1. You could have joined me at Fox Hills. No waiting and I played 27 holes. I could get the tee into the ground with a bit of effort and the greens would actually hold a shot. A couple flagsticks were frozen in place but I managed to yank a couple out (along with a huge plug of ice). After de-icing the stick’s end it fit nicely in the hole.

    I also understand Fellows Creek may be open.


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