Grand County golf courses look to open early
As the snow melts all across Grand County, golfers throughout the region are warming up their back swings.
The Grand Elk Golf Club announced Wednesday it would open Saturday, April 18; however, as of Thursday, with heavy snow falling, Grand Elk Golf Pro Mike Ritter said the course still hopes to open Saturday but it would be dependent upon weather.
Ritter explained that if the course opening is delayed Saturday he expects the course to open within the next few days. Contact the Grand Elk Golf Club this weekend at 970-887-9122 if you have questions regarding whether the course is open. Golfers can also call to set a tee time.
The Grand Elk Golf Course will have nine holes available for play each day for the next several weeks. The first week the links are open will be walking only, and greens fees will be offered at a discount rate of $25 for all you can play including the use of the practice range.
Grand Elk is opening much earlier this year than is typical.
“It’s very unusual to be opening the golf course before the Winter Park Ski Area closes,” stated Ritter.
He explained this weekend’s opening is a “soft” opening because many of the golf course’s employees are still working winter jobs.
“We still have lots of cleaning up to do on the course and the grass is just starting to grow,” Ritter stated. “So conditions are very early season, but we hope people enjoy this ‘bonus time’ at a very affordable rate.”
“With a lack of moisture and still fairly cold nights, our turf is still dormant,” said Grand Elk Golf Course Superintendent Austin Anderson. “We’ve been utilizing our tarps on some greens to create good playing conditions, and we expect warmer temperatures to bring excellent conditions this spring.”
As the season progresses and conditions improve the course will open up all 18 holes and begin allowing carts.
“The restaurant and course will be in full operation as we get further into May,” stated Ritter. Light snacks and beverages will be available at the course through April.
Just across US Highway 40, Golf Granby Ranch is scheduled to open May 20, weather permitting. Granby Ranch released its Summer Golf Event Calendar on Thursday.
The 16th Annual Grand Classic Tournament will kick off the competitive season on June 19. You can find more information about the summer event schedule at Granby Ranch Golf Course by going to http://www.granbyranch.com.
Pole Creek Golf Club, Grand County’s largest golfing complex featuring 27 holes, will open May 1, weather permitting. Pole Creek Golf Club is located off Hwy 40 just west of Tabernash.
Grand Lake Golf Course is also looking to get things started early this year. The course is planning to open May 1, weather permitting.
“The golf course is in good condition; it came through the winter very well, the greens are in good condition,” said Larry Burks, Grand Lake Golf Course general manager.
Burks commented on this year’s early opening date.
“It is nice to have a spring where we can get out on the grass a little early. Maybe some of these people can enjoy a little extra golfing.”
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With the incoming cold weather, Rocky Mountain National Park is planning to burn several slash piles across the park when appropriate.