Thanks to warm temperatures, some golf courses open early
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. The recent spring weather has had golf enthusiasts digging out the golf bags from deep within the closet, dusting them off and getting ready to hit the links.As the sun fought its way through the clouds Friday afternoon at Glenwood Springs Golf Club, Jim Otto practiced his putting on the practice green with his new putter.”I play rain or shine,” he said. “I have a coat in my (golf) bag.”Otto is a member of the the club’s Mens’ League, and he’s been anticipating the start of the new season.”I’ve actually played a number of times already this year,” he said. “I’m just looking forward to another great season for the men’s club.”The recent spring weather allowed most of the local courses to open early and let golfers like Otto get a head start on the season.”It’s still pretty early,” said Greg Gortsema, PGA head professional at Glenwood Springs Golf Club.Friday, Gortsema said that they still had a handful of golfers on the course even though the temperatures were still a bit on the cool side.
“The temperatures will keep them away,” he said. “But hopefully that will change over the weekend.”Gortsema said Glenwood Springs Golf Club typically opens around this time of year. This year’s opening weekend on March 16 had nearly 300 golfers out to play an early round. That has Gortsema excited about the upcoming seasons.”For early spring, the condition of the course is excellent,” he said. “We’re cutting grass, and we’ve already cut the greens probably five times.”Course conditions around the valley are similar to those at Glenwood. At River Valley Ranch in Carbondale, General Manager Zack Ray said that with the mild winter the course is in exceptional shape for this time of year.”The course made it through winter really well,” Ray said. “So far, so good.”Ray indicated that River Valley Ranch wasn’t scheduled to open until April 1, but thanks to the mild weather of late, it opened one week early.”Anything before (April) is just a bonus for the players,” Ray said. “We got open early and are excited about it.”Lakota Canyon Ranch Golf Course in New Castle has been open since late February, according to assistant golf professional John Underwood.
“It’s been really good, except last week with the snow,” he said. “This year we opened pretty early.” Lakota Canyon Ranch opened on Feb. 22; it had to close again because of snow, but quickly reopened. On March 16, Lakota Canyon Ranch witnessed an impressive turnout – 166 golfers that particular day. That was a surprise to Underwood.”We were going to have a record month before the snow came in last week,” Underwood said. “But we’re open for the season now.”Unless the Colorado weather has anything to say about it.Contact John Gardner: 945-8515, ext. email@example.com
Post Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO
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