Some courses like Royal County Down can void golfers of common sense
Anytime you go on a golf trip, fair or not, you look forward to one or two courses more than others. For my two-week trip to Ireland and Northern Ireland, I was probably looking forward to Royal County Down the most.
So when I showed up on Monday for my afternoon tee time, I tried to shake off the fact winds were picking up, and ominous clouds loomed over the mountains of Mourn.
This, after all, was my big day, weather isn’t going to stop me from playing arguably the British Isles’ finest links. Simply driving in from Dublin on the A2 coastal road, looking across the bay and seeing the looks of Newcastle’s massive dunes was enough to get my heart racing.
But as my tee time approached, things weren’t looking good. The wind was getting so bad you could barely walk, and the rain - going almost sideways - was hurting my face.
No worries, maybe I can squeeze in a few holes on the Annesley Links - County Down’s Wee Course - until the weather lightens up and then I’ll be in good shape….
The first two holes I had the wind with me, and I hit a bladed 3-iron about 280 pin high.
“I like this wind,” I said shivering down the fairway.
By the second hole, simply making contact was reason enough to be satisfied with a shot, and by the 3rd fairway I was trudging back in, grumpy and couldn’t feel my face. I was also soaked. Umbrellas do more harm than good when wind gusts reportedly reach 110km.
In certain parts of the Southeast U.S., 100km gusts would be reason enough to evacuate coastal areas. I was trying to golf in it. That’s the thing about certain legendary golf courses. It would take nothing short of a nuclear blast to keep you from at least trying to manage a round.
Luckily, the weather today was good enough for 36 holes, and I was able to finally get on the Championship Links – more coming on that later, as well as a fine course nearby, Ardglass Golf Club.
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