Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Solheim Cup 2017 - Come Along for the Ride....

This week I'm located in the great state of Iowa at Des Monies Golf and Country Club. I'm here helping my good friend, Rick Tegtmeier who is the Director of Grounds for DMGCC prepare the golf course for the championship. I'm also producing a v-blog for TurfNet.com it's called TurfNet on Tour. Take a look HERE 


It's great to be involved at Solheim Cup 2017. Stay tuned here and come along for the ride!


Friday, August 11, 2017

So you think its been Raining??

This is some of the most interesting data I have seen recently concerning rainfall in Colorado this summer. Everyone seems to think its been raining everyday, when in fact that's not the case throughout the entire state. Take a look at those red numbers, pretty amazing! Eagle to Steamboat is just slightly over 1/3 of the summer average, where the southeastern portion of the state is well above average. This just goes to show how localized the weather patterns can be in Colorado. Hopefully, some of those red and yellow areas can catch up over the next couple months.



Monday, August 7, 2017

Trading Sunrises for Sunsets.........

When I finished my career as a golf course superintendent, I thought one thing I would really miss was the sunrises. Well, Michael Stachowicz sent me a message and told me when he finished his GCS career it was a matter of just trading sunrise for sunsets. He was dead on! As a GCS most of the year you were sleeping as sunsets occurred so you didn't catch many of those. Not any more. I rarely miss a sunset and its one of the highlights of my day! Take a look of some of my July sunset weather photos, enjoy!







This one from the Drone!






Thursday, August 3, 2017

TurfNet 'Tips and Tricks' Video....

My latest video for TurfNet.com is live. In this Tips and Tricks video, I highlight an idea from a former intern of mine, Brian Boll. Brian is now the golf course superintendent at North Oaks Golf Club in Minnesota. Brian makes a calendar each season, which everyone on his staff receives on their first day of work. Where this idea really shines is that everyone gets one to take home to reference if needed. Many superintendents have a calendar posted at their facility, but giving each staff member their own copy is not something normally done. This helps keep everyone on the same page. Thanks Brian.....great tip!

To view the video, click HERE


Friday, July 28, 2017

Takeaways from The Open Championship....

One of my favorite tournaments of the year is the 'Open Championship'. The Open is unlike any other golf tournament. It could be called the NO-COMPLAINT Open, which I absoultely love. What do I mean by that? Well, you very rarely hear any complaints from players regarding the conditions of the golf course. It's almost like an unwritten rule, that when you step foot on the property you just play golf. That's right, just play golf....it is what it is....what you see is what you get! No "the greens are too slow" or "the heather/native is too thick" or "bunkers are too deep". Just play golf!

My first big takeaway from the Open, was the piece that Jimmy Roberts did on Royal Birkdale's Artisans Club. Fantastic feature! To view click HERE




My second takeaway was Jim 'Bones' Mackay making his debut for NBC/Golf Channel as an on course reporter. I thought for his first event, he did very well. After all, he made the "I think there is a 62 out there today" call, and he was dead on! I certainly look forward to 'Bones' being part of the NBC/GC team and bringing a different perspective on air.



My final takeaway is listening to a great podcast by my friend Dave Wilber, the 'Turfgrass Zealot'. His Podcast about Links Golf and the Open should be listened to by all. Of course, just like Bones predicted a 62, Dave picked you know who to win and he was dead on as well! You can listen to it HERE Well done Dave!





The only thing bad about the 'Open', is we have to wait 12 more months to 'Just Play Golf'! 

Monday, July 24, 2017

Great Visit to the Glacier Club

Recently, I had the opportunity to visit the Glacier Club in Durango, Colorado. Clint Starkebaum is the superintendent at Glacier and gave me a wonderful tour of the facility. The Glacier Club is a private 36 hole facility that offers some incredible mountain golf. The first 18 was built in the early 1970's and designed by Arthur Hills. Those holes are set in a lower valley floor. The second 18, which was just opened last year is designed by Hale Irwin. The new 18 is carved out of some amazing mountain terrain and sits above the Valley 18. Take a look at this incredible facility.. 

Clint Starkebaum, golf course superintendent at the Glacier Club.

The mountain course offers amazing views.

Some tee shots seem to float forever down to the fairway.

One of the valley holes.

This hole reminded me of some of my old roots back in New England.

Typical rock outcropping on the mountain course.

This synthetic tee was built up a steep slope where it was impossible to get a mower.

Not only are the golf course views amazing, but so are the homesites around the property.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Great Visit to Dalton Ranch Golf Club

Recently, I had the opportunity to visit Dalton Ranch Golf Club in Durango, Colorado. Brett Shaffer, golf course superintendent, gave me a wonderful tour of the facility and we discussed some of the local agronomic issues along the way. At the time of my visit, the Durango area had been suffering from an extensive period of drought and high temperatures. Water management in this region is always at the top of the minds of all local superintendents. Even with difficult environmental conditions, I found Dalton Ranch to be in excellent condition.


Brett Shaffer, Golf Course Superintendent at Dalton Ranch GC with their new clubhouse in the background.

The Animas River runs through portions of the course and is the lifeblood for water in this area of Colorado.

Dalton Ranch was designed by Ken Dye and opened in 1993.

When this famous tree died at Dalton, it was turned into Mountain Lion art.


Saturday, July 15, 2017

One Year Ago.....

One year ago, on July 15th, I made my decision during our "Birds of Prey" Member-Guest that it would be my last year as a golf course superintendent. Done. I had been thinking about it for a few years and finally knew it was time. I sent a text to my wife and kids to let them know this was it. I don't think they were very surprised? They knew it could happen at anytime. My body, mind and family all wanted me to end my long career as a golf course superintendent. Done.

Many have asked if I regret my decision in anyway. The answer is ABSOLUTELY not! I probably should have done it a few years prior. It's a whole new wonderful life for me. I've been able to do things this summer that I've never done all my life and enjoying every minute of it. There's no more listening to a bunch of BS from the GM, no more bunkers complaints, no more 3:45am summer alarm, no more weather concerns, no employee issues, etc. I could go on and on with that list for a long time, but that's enough. I found very quickly that working as a consultant on my own and working out of my house is fabulous. After all, who doesn't enjoy working in your home office in the morning, coffee in hand, pajamas on, and the dog at your feet! Stay tuned for future observations of the non-superintendent life. Thanks for reading!


July 15, 2016 - Special Date for me and my Family!

The Dog at your feet while working is Priceless!


Saturday, July 8, 2017

TurfNetTV - Latest Video is Live

My latest video for TurfNet.com is live. This video is about....Dogs! That's right, Dogs. I give everyone a break from that agronomic and golf course management stuff to sit back and relax and enjoy some really cool dogs. This is filmed at the GoPro Mountain Games in Vail, Colorado. Enjoy!

To view click: HERE



Saturday, July 1, 2017

TurfNet "Tips and Tricks" Video

My latest video work for TurfNet.com features Brian Boll, Superintendent at North Oaks Golf Club in North Oaks, Minnesota. Brian did a 9-month internship for me when I was at CCRockies. He was an exceptional intern. It was a pleasure to visit with him recently and film this TurfNet "Tips and Tricks" video about his "Murphy Pump". This is a brilliant idea for all golf course management facilities to have on hand (and hope to never use)! 

To view click HERE



Thursday, June 29, 2017

Solheim Cup 2017

Recently, I had the opportunity to visit with my good friend, Rick Tegtmeier from Des Moines Golf and Country Club, host of the 2017 Solheim Cup. I had a chance to see some of Rick's renovation work and observe the turf conditions at DGCC. Hats off to this great superintendent and his staff, this facility looks amazing. The Solheim competitors will love this golf course. I was especially impressed with the Penn A-4 green surfaces. I have observed many Penn A-4 greens throughout the country and these may be the finest I have ever seen. They have the look of my old A-4 greens at CCRockies. Turf that is extremely dense with very diminutive plants of extremely fine texture. Absolutely fantastic.

I will be headed back to Des Moines for the Solheim Cup in mid-August to do video work and to volunteer preparing the golf course for the championship. I must say, I'm really looking forward to this opportunity. I will be posting regularly during the tournament, so stay tuned!


Sunday, June 18, 2017

WinField "Lunch and Learn" Dalton Ranch Golf Club, Durango, Colorado

I'm very pleased to be part of the educational team for the Winfield "Lunch and Learn" event at Dalton Ranch Golf Club in Durango, Colorado on July 12, 2017. Its been while since I've been to that part of Colorado and I'm really looking forward to visiting and presenting to many old friends. I'm also looking forward to meeting some of the new superintendents in that area. Can't wait, mark your calendar! Hope to see you there.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

TurfNetTV - Latest Video is Live

My latest video for TurfNetTV is live on TurfNet.com. In this latest video, I chat with Joel Kachmarek, superintendent at Tacoma Country and Golf Club. Joel and I talk shade, trees, and a unique mowing pattern he has developed. Enjoy!

Click HERE:


Thursday, June 8, 2017

Great Podcast with Dr. Frank Rossi...

This podcast from TurfNet.com with Dr. Frank Rossi is a must listen. Frank chats with my good friend Dan Dinelli, Superintendent at North Shore Country Club and Dr. Roch Gaussoin, University of Nebraska. Dan has been performing his own research for greens construction and performance for almost 20 years at North Shore. His findings and opinions are truly fascinating. If you haven't listened  to this podcast and you are in the golf industry, an agronomist, or a golfer, what are you waiting for? Click HERE


Tuesday, May 30, 2017

A Visit to Chambers Bay.....

Recently, while on a trip to Seattle for some speaking engagements, I had the pleasure to tour Chambers Bay. Chambers was the site of the 2015 US Open and is a stunning layout designed by Robert Trent Jones II. Eric Johnson is the Director of Agronomy at Chambers and gave Doug Soldat, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin and I the complete tour of this wonderful facility. I have visited many golf courses through the years and Chambers has to be one of the coolest properties I have ever stepped foot on. A special thanks to Eric for his time and the great "agronomy talk" along the way. Take a look at these photos and I think you will agree, this place is special!

"The Lone Fir" is definitely special.

Another "Lone Fir" shot.

An example of the dramatic bunkering at Chambers.


We beat the rain by a few minutes, but it did make for some great views.

How about that pot bunker?


There was some great "agronomic talk" between Eric Johnson, left, Dr. Doug Soldat, right and myself.

Big thanks to Eric Johnson, Director of Agronomy, Chambers Bay.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

TurfNet "Tips and Tricks" Video...

Recently, while in the Seattle/Tacoma area, I had the opportunity to visit with Joel Kachmarek, Golf Course Superintendent at Tacoma Country and Golf Club in Lakewood, Washington. Joel is a very smart and progressive superintendent full of great ideas. One of those ideas, is the use of ski racks to attach watering hoses for easy dragging behind a vehicle. So good in fact, and despite some Seattle weather, I produced a TurfNet.com video for their "Tips and Tricks". Take a look...

TO VIEW CLICK here 


Monday, May 22, 2017

Snowpack.....You Just Never Know?

The latest snow-water equivalency graphs show that you just never know in Colorado. Vail Mountain SWE is down to just 15% of normal, while just on the other side of the hill, Copper Mountain is sitting at 116% of normal. This is vey unusual considering the proximity of these two areas. Hopefully the recent snowfall will help everyone add to these figures, before more runoff resumes.