As I do this blog, it’s 21 and sunny here, with still quite a few leaves on the trees considering the wind storms we’ve had this year and a couple of really heavy frosts.
We’ve had so many frost delays the past two weeks that we’ve pushed out start times to 10 a.m.. Down in the valley and by the Bow River, the climate changes quite a bit, but the golf course is in great shape.
It’s fast and firm and our staff has done a heck of a job keeping the leaves off, considering we’re built on an old tree farm. With all that said, I have no plans to push back closing day, which was Monday.
I’m feeling the heat, no question, over that decision, especially with a forecast for nice weather, but I’m a big believer in putting together our programs and sticking to them because they’re paying off.
Getting the leaves picked up, getting fairway aeration done, getting top dressing down and other things that need to be done takes time and your hours of operation are so short at this time of year.
Typically, the crew can’t get on the course until 10 or 11 a.m. because of frost and by 4 p.m., it’s starting to get dark, so your window of opportunity is small if there’s a lot of work to do and if you don’t do it right in the fall, you’re going to pay for it in the spring.
My attitude is to give up a week in the fall to save two weeks in the spring. Everyone wants you to open the third week of April and you want it to be good. If you don’t put it to bed right, that won’t happen.
People don’t understand all the things you need to do. It’s not like you close the door and turn the key at the top of the hill when you close for the year.
We’ve been in planning meetings the past two weeks on how we’re going to put things to bed. It’s critical to success.
Sure, I take a lot of heat on it, but I really believe in what we’re doing. I’ve seen what it’s like to push it to the brink and all of a sudden in spring, you’re looking at problems, even if we did have a busy Thanksgiving weekend.
You can’t afford to not winterize properly.