The blanket of snow and ice slowly recedes, starting at the edges of the fairways, then the tee boxes, and finally the greens. As the elk herd lingers on the range and around the 1st tee box, sunny days start to remind us that maybe, just maybe, there’ll be some winter golf this year. Ice, covering the lakes, still thick enough for a coyote to walk across in the mornings, looks fragile enough by mid day that he comes back along their banks. Days go by spent inside, watching more snow fall but all the while thinking “maybe it’ll melt by tomorrow.”
Water appears! To the right of 10 fairway, and off the blue tee box of 17, the lethargic bass slurp crisp air for the first time this year. The herd moves off the range, seeking higher ground, as the sunshine grows brighter. Srixon range balls emerge, speckled dots of white that have lain dormant since they were hit sometime last year. Certainly we will be golfing tomorrow! Snow, the circles close on the lakes, and the coyote struts across the ice.
We were so close! Frustration (only a bit as it is Colorado after all), followed by acceptance, and then a promising weather report brings news of “sixties and sunshine.” Six spikes and forty cows, at home on the range again, meander off the course. The water holes on the lakes grow larger. The range opens and eager hands grip clubs, the finely honed indoor practice swing finally put into action. Good shots, thin shots (stings the hands in the cold but who cares), a shank (whoops, first one all year), but the rust comes off and surely we will be playing tomorrow! Snow, freezing rain, the herd, the bass dive, and the coyote crosses the lakes.
The day finally arrives! Golf is back at Fossil Trace and it’s time to head down to the first tee. Elk are still on the range, the lakes are frozen, the coyote disapprovingly watches your practice swings. Placing the ball on the tee, visualizing where the first shot of the year will go, we sit back and think to ourselves, “Ahhh, golf.”
Nick Borgeson, Assistant Golf Professional