Travelers/golfers going to the Grand Strand: Red Alert! Check with the golf courses you are booked at regarding course conditions. About 3/4 of the golf courses in Myrtle Beach have lost their greens due to the abnormally cold winter, and you may not be auto re-booked by your tour operator. Tripadvisor and Golfadvisor have the gory details and I’d recommend you read the latest reviews. Courses with Bermuda putting surfaces have been hit extremely hard. Nothing is exempt, even the great courses like Grand Dunes, Thistle, Tidewater, and Oyster Bay. Most have had their greens reduced to dirt or dead grass with patches of dirt; and some have been dyed green. These conditions are deplorable and are creating significant angst among the traveling public.
We were booked on four of the Big Cats, Oyster Bay, and Thistle and have moved off all of them. Three of the Cats were reported as dead with the lone exception being Leopard’s Chase which has bent grass on the putting surfaces. Area courses with cool season grasses came through the winter in better shape, but the vast majority of courses have Bermuda, which holds up better in the summer heat, but needs to be covered in extended periods of freezing temperatures. This was not done and there is a local symposium being held for greens keepers to understand how to better handle such an emergency in the future, but that has not solved for this season’s problems. June and July could be rough in the area if the Bermuda surfaces haven’t recovered and the bent greens become stressed from heat and over play.
I’ve verified playing conditions are good to excellent on the following courses and aeration schedules will not impact play the week of Memorial Day. We are re-booked on: TPC of Myrtle Beach, Myrtle Beach National – Kings North, Pawleys Plantation, Willbrook, Glen Dornoch, and Crow Creek. We’re staying in Sunset Beach, NC at Sea Trail and as a result of all the re-bookings in the south, will be doing some extended driving, but at least we’ll be playing on good surfaces.
Perl East and Perl West are also reported in excellent condition but are being aerated right before Memorial Day. If anyone has information about more courses that are in good condition please share and thank you!