I can still remember how much I dreaded winter before I started playing golf.
I assumed that all golf courses would close once temperatures reached 30 degrees. You can imagine how thrilled I was to learn that golf courses don’t close just for cold weather.
While most public courses close for severe weather, they won’t usually do so unless several inches of snow have fallen. You can learn more about winter golf here. We’ll also give you tips on playing golf in cooler temperatures.
Table of Contents
- Can You Play on Winter Golf Courses?
- What Temperature is the Grass Too Frosty to Play?
- Winter Golfing Challenges
- Tips for playing a better round in winter
Can You Play on Winter Golf Courses?
Yes, you can still play golf in winter. Most municipal courses are open throughout the year, especially in the west and south of the United States.
Golf courses are generally closed due to bad weather. This is to avoid significant damage to the fairways or putting surfaces.
Winter is the best time for new players to perfect their golf swing. Winter golfers won’t have to wait as long for tee times as they would during peak seasons on Sundays.
Many people have found that playing winter-golf has helped them to improve their game.
What Temperature is the Grass Too Frosty to Play?
Frost forms on grass blades when they reach 32 degrees or lower. Remember that grass is often colder than the average air temperature, especially in colder climates with high levels of moisture. Golfers may need to endure a frost delay, even though the temperature is well above freezing.
Frost can also occur in states with warmer climates, such as Arizona, Hawaii, and Florida. In Florida, frost delays of up to two hours were something I experienced in early December. For a greater portion of the year, golfers must deal with frost in Canada, even in spring months like April.
Golf courses aren’t trying to limit your fun when frost is on the ground. They’re simply trying to prevent course damage, especially to the greens. Grab a cup of coffee at the pro shop, then flip through a magazine about golf and wait for the temperature to rise.
Winter Golfing Challenges
Although golf is one the most enjoyable winter activities, there are some challenges when teeing up in cold conditions. Let’s go over a few of winter golf’s main challenges and possible solutions.
If you’ve never experienced frostbite on the golf course, consider yourself lucky. Below freezing temperatures can cause frostbite in the fingers and toes after just a few holes. It can be difficult to hit even a decent shot when you are unable to feel your hands on a golf club.
Cart Paths Are Smooth
Winter can make it difficult to operate a golf cart. The cart paths can become slippery in the winter, especially when there is snow, rain, sleet or snow. Golfers should be careful and avoid black ice patches on cart paths.
Uncomfortable to Swing in Layers
To keep warm and from getting cold, most golfers have several layers of clothing. While this is a great idea, too many layers can slow down your golf swing. Trial and error is the only way to find the right amount of clothing that will keep you warm while not negatively impact your golf swing.
Your Equipment Won’t Be As Effective
This is something to be aware of if you’ve never played golf in the winter. You won’t get the same distance out of your clubs. This is because the club can’t transfer as much energy to the golf ball in cooler temperatures.
I’ll never forget smoking a hybrid shot on a long par 5 that came up about 40 yards short of the green. It was then that I realized winter golf is a completely different game. Cold air is thick, and the golf ball just can’t cut through it as it can in the warmer months.
Tips for playing a better round in winter
Just because golf is more challenging in the winter doesn’t mean that you have to simply put up with shooting higher scores. In this section, we’ll list some tips on how to play better golf in cooler temperatures. These tips will help you become a better golfer as winter draws near.
1. Winter Golf Gear: Make an investment
This technology has made it possible to play golf in colder weather without being miserable. Many sports apparel companies now offer compression pants and undershirts that are made to keep golfers warm. This specialty clothing isn’t cheap, but it’ll make a massive difference in your comfort level and performance on the golf course.
Make it a point to find yourself a golf jacket or pullover that keeps you warm but doesn’t restrict your swing. Wear gloves on both hands if it is hot and humid. Also, keep warm by keeping your hand warmers handy in the golf cart. This will allow you to grip your golf club better and keep your hands warm.
2. Utilize Indoor Golf Simulators
Indoor golf simulators can help you find the best courses in your area if your favorite course is closed because of extreme temperatures or snow cover. Sure, it’s not as effective as playing on a real course or driving range, but some practice is better than none at all. Remember, the goal of practice is to be ready to go when the golf season begins.
3. Walking is better than riding
While this may seem harsh to some golfers, it is true. Walking instead of riding can help you stay warm on a cold or mild day. The wind chill factor is worse when you’re driving around in a golf car.
Walking or using a pull-cart during your round will keep your blood pumping and warm. It’s also much better exercise and will keep you in good condition throughout the winter.