Today was the calm before the storm – the warm before the cold – the green before the white….yes – you can say it anyway you like – it was a day to golf. The warm winds were blowing from the south-west and we knew that playing just 6 holes was ideal to test both directions. And 6 holes is just 1 hour of golf. So lunchtime on the links and it was perfect. Nic, Chris, Joyce and I were joined last minute by Barry who just had to play one more round – especially with this weather. Teeing off 1, there was a unique excitement to be on the 45th parallel and hitting a golf ball into nothing but grass (ok – we all hit the fairway on this hole!!!).
Of course, Nic does not play any round without some wager – so it was 2 man best ball – Nic and Barry, Don and Chris – with Joyce as a partner for one team on 3 holes, and the other team on the other 3 holes. You see, the holes we played – 1-3, 16-18 – give us 2 par 3s, 2 par 4s and 2 par 5s – one each with the wind, and one each against the wind.
Holes 1 and 2 – halved with some snakey putts to cover the hole.
Hole 3 is a long par 5 and with the wind, the Bell Bomber was driver wedge to beside the hole. Of course, Joyce was not to be outdone. Nic on in 2, Joyce on in 4 – with a 2 shot allowance, putt drained and it was an eagle finish and an advantage to the other team.
Heading to 16, we had Joyce as our partner again – and we played it that way. The Bomber hit it onto the neighbouring fairway and our team headed up the fairway. Bomber and Barry hit turbulence, and we smooth sailed to a net par to take the hole – woulda coulda been a birdie win tho!!
17 is a nice par 3 downhill – big green – that nobody hit. A chip and a putt for both teams and we remained tied. And off to 18.
Now 18 is one of the prettiest closing holes in Muskoka and the vantage point from the tee would suggest keeping it a bit right of the pond and let the westerly blow it back into the fairway. If, however, your partner hits it with a slight fade down the middle, he does end up in the nicely cropped fescue.
2 on for 2 of us – man – the Bomber knew what he was doing when he dragged this old lad back the tees he plays – so it was a hybrid on for a shot at a birdie. Bomber Nic was driver wedge for a 30 footer. A nice lag putt and a par. I had a straight 20 footer – but my sweepers left it well short for a knee-knocker to tie.
As I opened saying, Nic always has a wager – so it was of to a one hole putt-off. The greens are still in excellent shape – but just a tad bit slow. Four of us got somewhat close – but not it. So it was up to Joyce, still our partner, to take the final and deciding putt. A perfect line and 4 inches short of perfect weight. Nic was not going to play all night – there were still a few things to get done before snowmaggeddon hits tomorrow.
A brief de-brief on the round and it was a wrap for the season. In honesty, we toasted the 17 season being in the rear-view with high hopes for 2018 – for you and yours as well!