Last week I wrote about the joys of autumn golf in the warm late afternoon sun. Autumn golf also features the cold afternoon rain.
Now if it’s raining and cold, I don’t go out. Someone once said to me that because I don’t like to play when I’m cold or wet that I’m not a True Golfer . . . whatever that means.
But sometimes you just have to go out and it isn’t raining, but it might rain. So here’s what we do in the Pacific Northwest, the rain capital of the western world.
Bring along your rain jacket and rain pants. If you use a golf glove, bring extras. They get soaked quickly and won’t dry out.
Bring four towels. One is to clean your clubs with. The other three are to dry your hands before you take your grip. Bring three because one will be wet before you make the turn. The second one will be wet halfway through the back nine.
Make sure you have the club cover that came with your bag. When it starts raining, we cover our clubs first and put on our rain suit second.
Did you pack an umbrella, by the way?
Bring along an extra pair of socks and shoes to change into when the round is over. There’s nothing like having dry feet on the way home.
Now for playing in the rain.
The ball will sit quickly when it hits the green, so you can be more aggressive that usual. Your approach might plug or make a deep mark when it lands. Please repair!
Be sure swing easily from the fairway and hit the ball easily. You might need to take one more club accordingly.
Concentrate on hitting the ball first. A strike that is the least bit fat will throw up mud and the ball will go only a very short distance. If your habit is to take a divot, try to play for picking the ball off the ground.
Near the green, put away the bump and run because the wet ground can grab the ball before it has a chance to run. When chipping from greenside, try to minimize spin, which can again stop the ball before it starts to run.
A wet green will be a slower green, so you can hits putts more boldly. Play less break because of the added speed.
Read Rule 25-1, which tells you what to do if there is a build-up of casual water.
Do all this, and by golly, maybe you can become a True Golfer.