Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Things That Keep Me Up At Night

There are two things I worry about in the winter --- snow mold and the formation of ice on our turf.  Ice is never good for a golf course.  
On Monday Greywolf was blanketed by another deep snow fall, the second heavy snowfall of the winter.  By Monday evening there was 41 cm (16") of settled snow on the golf course.  But on Monday night the warm weather caused rain instead of snow.  I estimate that from Monday night through until Tuesday night over 3 cm (1”) of rain fell on the golf course.  By Wednesday morning the rain and warmer temperatures caused the snow to settle to the 27 cm (11”) mark at the shop. 

35 cm (14") of Snow on #4 Green
Thursday and Friday we began to inspect all eight of our untarped greens.  We inspected these greens for ice and snow depth.  The snow depth on the greens ranges from 27 cm (11”) on the lower holes to 35 cm (14”) on the upper holes.  The forth and tenth greens had a thin layer of sheet ice which is a concern.  The sixth green had some ice formation.  The remaining untarped greens showed little to no ice build up.  This was surprising.  The following video was shot while I inspected the sixth green, Cliffhanger.  Apologies for the rough quality of the video and audio.  There was a lot of wind as a storm moved in. 

I am worried about the fourth and tenth greens, but I was surprised that the other six greens were not covered in ice.  I believe the lack of ice build up may be due to several factors including:
  • ·         Depth of snow cover so far
  • ·         Aeration holes that were left on greens allowing water to run into root zone
  • ·         The insulating factor of the snow and some residual heat in the green surface
With the weather forecast, it is raining as I write this and there is more snow rain in the forecast until Thursday, I have made the decision to hold off on any form of action regarding ice on our greens.  We will wait to see what the weather does over the next five days, then meet with our management group, and discuss the options.  Stay tuned.
On a positive note with all the snow on the mountain, Panorama will be opening early on December 5th.

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