Battling Bunker Washouts One Rain Event at a Time
Written by Jack Creveling, our Golf Course Superintendent.
During the summer months in Central Florida, rain events become more frequent and heavier in volume. This causes considerable issues with the bunkers here at Golden Ocala. Due to the great topography of our golf course, heavy rain events can create channels of moving water that find their way into the bunkers.
This results in the sand being washed down away from the faces of the bunkers, silt building up in the bottoms, and standing water being left behind. Correcting this issue and restoring each bunker to proper condition is a multiple step process.
First, any standing water that did not drain is pumped out. Next, all the silt material is cleaned out of the bunker to keep the sand in the most pure and uncontaminated condition possible. Then, sand is pushed and shoveled back up to the edges that were washed out. Finally, the bunker is raked by machine to restore the proper grade. The edges of the bunker must be raked with great care so that no unfair conditions are created for the golfers.
Once all is complete, the bunkers will look as if nothing happened. This process can be trying for the staff since heavy rain events can occur frequently during the summer. It is the dedication of the staff to provide great conditions that is essential for success during this trying time of year.