The weather has changed. We’re winding down the golf season, at least in the temperate Pacific Northwest. The greens have recovered from their fall sanding, and we can play a few more rounds before the rain settles in for the duration.
Summer is about scoring — taking advantage of the gains we made over the winter. But that comes with its own pressure and we can get so caught up in what we’re doing that we forget why we’re doing it.
We play golf for our athletic recreation, to have fun with friends, maybe to have a bit of friendly competition from time to time.
We also seek golf’s beautiful, manicured surroundings. The plainest golf course is a finer place to be than the most beautiful bowling alley, and autumn is the time when any golf course is at its best.
If you play a parkland course, the trees are turning color and it’s worth the green fees just to the stroll around the grounds. The soft autumn light makes the colors of the summer course more intense as well. It’s a thrill just to be out here.
The cooler temperatures are a plus, too, at least for me. Golf in 70° weather is ideal.
The easy autumn atmosphere puts my mind at ease. Out for a stroll, hit the ball occasionally, that’s about it. With my mind more on the enjoyment of my surroundings than on playing the game, all the good things seem easier to do.
I play most at this time of year when I pick up my grandson after school. We tee off at about 3:30 and finish a few hours later when the sun is low and the day is winding down. There aren’t many people on the course so we get lots of do-overs. Between shots we just have fun talking about whatever comes up.
So here’s to Autumn Golf. We say goodbye to a lovely summer, and get in touch again with why we love this game so much.