I'm back from my golf weekend. We had a great time, and we got very lucky with the weather. Here's a rundown of the rounds:
Round 1: Meadowcreek Golf Course in Charlottesville, VA
Despite having time to warm up, and having a pretty decent range session, I came out of the gate playing horribly. My drive was off, which led to me having to scramble. I ended up with a 111, which is pretty bad even for me.
Round 2: Meadowcreek Golf Course in Charlottesville, VA
After a break for lunch, we headed out for our second round of the day. During the break, I went to the range and hit a few driver shots. I finally relegated myself to shortening my backswing (and losing distance) in exchange for more control. As a result (and, of course, newfound familiarity with the course) I scored a lot better, carding a 103. Interestingly, only two of the four of us improved in this second round, but then again it would have been tough for me to score higher than my 111 after having JUST played the course.
Round 3: Devil's Knob Golf Course at Wintergreen Resort, VA
This is a bear of a course on top of Wintergreen mountain. The fantastic part of it, however, is that it's at 3500 feet, which means cooler temps and NO humidity. The weather was absolutely PERFECT for golf. It also means, however, a ton of dramatic elevation changes on holes.
This course has a history of kicking my butt, so I was not at all unhappy with the 108 I scored. I spent a LOT more time than I normally would have at the driving range, hitting driver after driver to try to figure out what was going wrong. It paid off. Despite an uneven performance at the driving range, my driver shots were much, much more consistent than they have been for a while.
Through the round, I managed to conquer (meaning bogie or better) a couple of holes where I've had to simply give up in the past after getting to double par. I had an extremely rough spot in the first half of the back nine, after getting trapped in a bunker (took double par). This ruined my chance of staying below 105. Unfortunately after that bunker incident it took me several holes to get my head screwed back on so I could play better. While I was waiting for my partners to finish on that hole, however, I spent some time practicing bunker play, and figured out what I've been doing wrong all this time. After that hole, my bunker shots were a LOT better.
While I was hoping for a better score, I was reasonably satisfied, and had the second best score of the day (hard to believe, considering I'm the weakest golfer in our group). One of our guys got so frustrated with his play that he simply stopped keeping score for a little while.
Round 4: Stoney Creek Golf Course at Wintergreen Resort, VA
As round 4 began, we were all a little stiff and sore from our weekend. At the end of the day, though, I had a consistent round on another course that has kicked my tail in the past, carding a 107. My driver shots were the best they've EVER been in a round. I think I only had one bad one the whole day, and that was on the first hole. Our scores were not helped by a 30 minute rain/lightning delay. Our foursome scored 105, 106, 107, and 108 for this round. I was pretty happy with my standing there, since all three of those guys were in the mid-90s for our first round of the weekend.
-I played well on a handful of holes on the Wintergreen courses that have kicked my butt in the past
-I managed to get very consistent with my driver, hitting the ball straight and generally about 215-225. I can live with this, and will score quite well at my home courses (which are easier than the Wintergreen courses) if I can keep it up.
-My bunker play improved due to one total blowup that led me to have a minor epiphany.
-My chipping was good all weekend, and I had a chip-in for bogie on the 10th hole on Sunday.
-I found that despite being tired and stiff, my play actually improved as the weekend went on, while my playing partners' scores got higher.
-Putting really killed all of us. The Meadowcreek greens weren't fast, but they were inconsistent, making it hard to get into a rhythm. The Wintergreen greens, particularly Devil's Knob, were slopey and very, very fast ... even have the rain on Sunday.
-One thing that killed us all on the Wintergreen courses was the EXTREMELY thick rough. If you ended up there, you basically lost an entire club-length on your next shot, and it was possible you wouldn't even find your ball.