Golfing in the New England Autumn

fall, autumn golf

Woodhaven Country Club, CT (Photo by Greg D’Andrea)

For me, golf season normally begins in the late April/early May area generally depending upon the weather being cooperative.  Anyone who has spent any significant period of time here in New England understands that the old Mark Twain saying (which has since been adopted by many other areas of the country) “If you don’t like the weather in New England, just wait a few minutes,” is pretty much on the money.  There have been times when I could swear I’ve experienced all four seasons within a period of 24 hours!  I remember one occasion where my job was shut down and I was sent home early due to a major snowstorm blowing through.  That afternoon, I was at the driving range.  So you can get my drift.  And if that’s the case for one day, imagine what a stretch of a few weeks will bring!

But despite when “golf season” actually kicks off, for me, the best part of golf season begins right around now – mid-October.  Why?  Well, quite simply, it’s the best time of year for golf here in CT.  The temperature is right, the humidity is dropping and the best part of it all…the scenery.  But for those not here in New England, or who haven’t had the pleasure of playing here in the fall, let me give you the rundown.

Temperature – Around now, we’re typically talking in the upper 60’s to low 70’s.  I don’t know about you, but to me…that’s perfect.  Do you know any of those people who say “I’d rather be cold than hot?”  Well, if you don’t, you do now.  I just can’t think of anything good that comes out of a 90+ degree day.  And triple-digits?  Forget it.  There will be no golf that day.  But this time of year?  You could get me to play 36 holes easily!

Humidity – OK, I already took a shower this morning.  The last thing I want is to feel as if I stepped back into a hot shower when I walk out the front door.  You know that level of humidity where simply breathing causes you to sweat?  Welcome to July and August in Connecticut.  I do it, but again, why would you want to play golf in those type of conditions?  But around now, when the humidity level drops from nearly 100% down into the 60% area, you can walk the course all day long without breaking a sweat.

The Scenery – There’s a reason people choose to vacation in Connecticut despite the temperature dropping here.  People don’t come here for the beaches.  No, they come here because it’s beautiful.  There is nothing like the fall foliage in New England.  While most of CT’s golf courses are well maintained and provide nice scenery throughout golf season, it’s a different story in October.  The tree-lined fairways are alive with leaves changing to the reds, oranges, yellows, browns and greens of the season.  While the falling leaves may wreak havoc on your errant tee-shot, it’s a small price to pay for the golf course eye candy you can only enjoy for a short few weeks per year.  Besides, if the missing ball bothers you that much, simply cite the P.A.F. rule.

Anyway, I’m on this kick because I played out in these beautiful, perfect conditions today.  A golfer could not ask for anything more than the mostly sunny, upper 60’s with a slight breeze conditions in which we played today.  The beautiful scenery was just the icing on the cake.  So don’t look at this time of year as the beginning of the end of your golf season.  Just consider it to be saving the best for last.

Swing ’til you’re happy!

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