Vancouver's public golf courses reopening on Monday after the great thaw

Jan 21 2017, 2:22 am

After more than five days of snow and ice melting induced by warmer temperatures and heavy rainfall, three public golf courses owned and operated by the City of Vancouver are set to reopen early next week.

The Vancouver Park Board says Fraserview, Langara, and McCleery golf courses will reopen on Monday, January 23 following an unusual seven-week closure. The golf courses are normally open every single day of the year, except Christmas Day and extreme weather conditions, and usually experience a combined average of 6,500 rounds of golf during the months of December and January.

All three golf courses have been closed since December 5 when the city experienced its first major snowfall of the season, and continued snowfall and cold temperatures prevented operators from reopening the facilities.

While there was some melting over the last few weeks, the snow melt water had nowhere to drain due to the deep ground frost, and the frozen surface repeatedly refroze during the freeze-thaw cycles. As a result, the greens remained saturated with water, and even when the snow melted the greens required a period of time to drain and firm up to support foot traffic.

“The golf courses were closed for seven weeks, the longest extended closure in 20 years or more,” said Vancouver Park Board Chair Michael Wiebe in a statement. “Warmer temperatures have finally made the greens, tees and fairways playable again. I look forward to getting out there soon as I expect other golfers do, too!”

But Park Board staff at the golf courses were still working over the past month and a half. During the closure, staff caught up on maintenance projects on buildings and around the courses. With the weather clearing up, work has since shifted towards getting the golf courses in shape for the return of the golf season.

As of Friday morning, 149 rounds of golf have already been booked on Monday at the three golf courses.

DH Vancouver StaffDH Vancouver Staff

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