Michigan golf season is practically here, but is it too soon to hit the course?

Rain, rain, go away

Back in business: Golfing, boating allowed again in Michigan

So what if the groundhog saw its shadow, what do they know anyway?

If you’re itching to hit the golf course, you’re not alone. In fact, most people already have (ahem, that would be me). While the weather hasn’t been so kind, we did have a couple solid March days that I, among others, took full advantage of.

Now, beggars can’t be choosers. I had to remind myself of that during the two rounds I’ve played this year. My first time swinging a club this season came back in February. Sometimes, going months without hitting a ball can do wonders when it comes to eliminating bad muscle memory tendencies.

Most of the time, us average golfers need to remind ourselves that we’re not professionals. You’re not going to hit a perfect shot every time, and not everything is going to go your way. With that said, there are a couple of things that might affect your score early this season -- if you’re even keeping score.

The biggest problem? The greens. Most courses will go through a series of aeration. It typically takes place at the beginning and end of the season, but:

  • That’s not up for me to decide when it takes place.
  • What do I know, I’m a writer, not a greenskeeper.

So far, the greens I played on this season were atrocious, but again, that’s a given. If you plan on golfing anytime soon, keep that in mind. The greens don’t roll true, and you’re probably going to have to putt the ball harder than usual. Remember: This isn’t peak summertime, the greens still need plenty of time to grow in.

It’s been a couple weeks since I last played, and honestly, the course conditions weren’t so bad, but it was cart path only. Considering we’ve gotten plenty of rain recently, you can expect some wet, possibly even soaked, conditions when you head out on the course.

Here’s a tip: Bring a small towel to keep your grips dry if you’re carrying multiple clubs out to the fairway. I like to put a tee in the ground and balance my club on top so it doesn’t get wet.

Am I boring you with some obvious tips to avoid any unwanted frustration on the golf course? If so, here’s an obvious observation:

It’s UGLY out there.

C’mon, it’s April. The trees don’t look like they do in the summertime. And the grass? Don’t get me started. If the ground isn’t hard in some areas, it’s definitely going to look ugly, or worse, both.

Be prepared for some slowdowns. Think you’re the only one planning on golfing that day? Think again. So is everyone else.

Remember, it’s early. Like, really early. You might want to do yourself, your buddies, your ladies and fellow golfers on the course a favor and actually practice. I know that’s tough sometimes, because why go to the range on a 60 degree day in April. Face it, you just want to go out there and play.

One more thing, prepare yourself for a lot of “FORE!” out there. Let’s just hope it’s not coming from your group.

Hit ‘em straight.

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