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Free Lift From Swale


Mkgrady

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58 minutes ago, Rulesman said:

Is the direction of play to the left or right. Not that it makes any difference to my suggestion.

Direction of play is to the right - the trench runs more or less perpendicular across the fairway.

1 hour ago, Double Mocha Man said:

Interesting that all the divots are on the uphill side.  Perchance some foot wedge action?  😁

There’s definitely a lot of foot wedging going on there. Because the trench was shaped to collect and divert water along the natural slope of the hole, it also tends to collect balls and divert them into the flatter parts of the trench.

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19 minutes ago, Zippo said:

image.thumb.jpeg.422d94121521fd694d740896371a4d55.jpeg

I think this is the course @Double Mocha Manis talking about. Doing this from my phone so not sure if you can read the rules in the upper left. 

Yep, drainage ditches on several holes, 2 feet deep, about 3 feet wide.  Not part of the course design.  There to drain certain holes.  Good sleuthing Zippo.

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18 minutes ago, Double Mocha Man said:

Yep, drainage ditches on several holes, 2 feet deep, about 3 feet wide.  Not part of the course design.  There to drain certain holes.  Good sleuthing Zippo.

For Avalon, I’m pretty sure they are saying it’s all GUR without specifically going out there and keeping them marked as such. Tough because there’s no specific boundaries on them either. 

Some “local rules” on scorecards are there for pace of play more than being an allowable rule. Padden and Eaglemont had been like that. 

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20 hours ago, iacas said:

You can't just make up whatever Local Rules you want. They're not allowed under the Rules of Golf.

So, I'm asking you to do a little work instead of just guessing at what may be possible here. This is the Rules of Golf forum. Let's post knowledgeable answers, not "my guess is…" answers.

So, what local rule or regular rule do you think might allow relief from a drainage "depression"? Particularly given that a "drainage ditch" is included in the definition for "penalty area."

Does a drainage ditch meet any of these for an ACC?

Abnormal Course Condition

Any of these four defined conditions:

  • Animal Hole,
  • Ground Under Repair,
  • Immovable Obstruction, or
  • Temporary Water.

It also doesn't sound like Model Local Rule F-20 applies:

Model Local Rule F-20

“Drainage channels that are made of artificial materials and run next to cart paths are treated as immovable obstructions in the general area and are part of the cart path. A player may take free relief under Rule 16.1b.

I thought I responded to this last night but I must have failed to hit the "Submit Reply" button.

Essentially I said I wasn't "guessing" at what the rule was.  I was "guessing" that the course ownership had their local rule approved by the USGA.

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5 minutes ago, Double Mocha Man said:

Essentially I said I wasn't "guessing" at what the rule was.  I was "guessing" that the course ownership had their local rule approved by the USGA.

You can’t just submit to the USGA whatever you want changed. There’s only certain additions/changes that can be made. Like I said above, I think this is a case of them being lazy in properly marking the course. 

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12 minutes ago, Double Mocha Man said:

I thought I responded to this last night but I must have failed to hit the "Submit Reply" button.

Essentially I said I wasn't "guessing" at what the rule was.  I was "guessing" that the course ownership had their local rule approved by the USGA.

The point was this is a Rules discussion. Come with more than guesses. Guesses don’t help at all.

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5 minutes ago, phillyk said:

You can’t just submit to the USGA whatever you want changed. There’s only certain additions/changes that can be made. Like I said above, I think this is a case of them being lazy in properly marking the course. 

I'm not sure how Avalon Links went about getting this local rule approved, if in fact they even did that.  But it's been on the scorecard for many years.

5 minutes ago, iacas said:

The point was this is a Rules discussion. Come with more than guesses. Guesses don’t help at all.

Sorry Erik if I offended you, but it wasn't a guess about a rule.  It was a guess about the golf course implementing the rule.

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2 minutes ago, Double Mocha Man said:

I'm not sure how Avalon Links went about getting this local rule approved, if in fact they even did that.  But it's been on the scorecard for many years.

Being on the scorecard doesn’t make it approved. When we order scorecards, we can put whatever we want on them if it means helping move golfers along and improve experience. 

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1 minute ago, phillyk said:

Being on the scorecard doesn’t make it approved. When we order scorecards, we can put whatever we want on them if it means helping move golfers along and improve experience. 

It's late now but perhaps tomorrow I'll call Mr. Hass to see how he went about implementing that rule.  As you said earlier he probably saw those deep drainage ditches as GUR.  Can he just declare that (and put it on the scorecard) or does he need to run it by the USGA?

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2 hours ago, Double Mocha Man said:

Sorry Erik if I offended you, but it wasn't a guess about a rule.  It was a guess about the golf course implementing the rule.

It didn’t offend me. It just didn’t add anything to the conversation.

If you’re going to post here in the Rules forum and you aren’t the guy asking the questions, post what you know. And do some research.

I couldn’t care less what some course put on their scorecard.

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12 hours ago, Double Mocha Man said:

It's late now but perhaps tomorrow I'll call Mr. Hass to see how he went about implementing that rule.  As you said earlier he probably saw those deep drainage ditches as GUR.  Can he just declare that (and put it on the scorecard) or does he need to run it by the USGA?

If you want to understand what can and cannot be done with marking the course, there are  couple of areas within the rules that you should look.  First, the Definition of GUR.   There is a lot of latitude allowed, GUR is essentially whatever the Committee decides it is, although a few conditions are GUR whether marked or not.  Then look at Item 2F under Committee Procedures, marking Abnormal Course Conditions for General Play.  There the guidance is to be a little more judicious in what to select as GUR.    However, the first sentence might give some justification:

Quote

In general, when ground conditions are abnormal to the course or it is unreasonable to require a player to play from a specific area, it should be marked as ground under repair.

At my home club we have some linear depressions where loose soil has settled along the irrigation lines, but these depressions aren't very deep or sharply defined. I don't believe they should be classified as GUR, and they're not.  However, for a deeper drainage swale, as @Double Mocha Mandescribes ("drainage ditches on several holes, 2 feet deep, about 3 feet wide") it may be reasonable to make them GUR.

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My primary course this past year has a goofy par 5 that has this ditch at about 200 yards from the middle set of tees:

 

image.thumb.png.d99b5ed885a2bf28e1c8bc74256b5310.png

Being this about 30" deep, 6 feet or so in width, sometimes wet and considering myself a "golfer"  I would lay up as this was usually an unplayable lie. Now a couple months into playing with a men's group I come to find they they claim a local rule to move the ball out of it. If you are on the downslope they move it back and if on the upslope they move it forward where you have a decent chance of reaching the green in two.

I have a hard time abiding by this "rule".

 

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On 10/17/2021 at 3:34 PM, Zippo said:

image.thumb.jpeg.422d94121521fd694d740896371a4d55.jpeg

I think this is the course @Double Mocha Manis talking about. Doing this from my phone so not sure if you can read the rules in the upper left. 

I've played Avalon many times. Never noticed that local rule on the scorecard. However, I also have never noticed or taken relief from the described "unmarked drainage corridors". Not sure what that even means. 

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13 minutes ago, reidsou said:

I've played Avalon many times. Never noticed that local rule on the scorecard. However, I also have never noticed or taken relief from the described "unmarked drainage corridors". Not sure what that even means. 

Running length-wise in the right rough holes 1 and 2 south. In rough between 5&6 south. I don’t think I’ve seen it in the north 9, but it is in west. 

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On 10/17/2021 at 10:29 PM, Rulesman said:

If that is fairway I would mark it as GUR.

On what grounds?

It has been mentioned here that the purpose of such swale is to collect and divert water. This is from the Definition of  Penalty Area:

A penalty area is:
•• Any body of water on the course (whether or not marked by the Committee),
including a sea, lake, pond, river, ditch, surface drainage ditch or other open
watercourse (even if not containing water),

Seems pretty straightforward to me.  That means also that any water in those swales is NOT Temporary Water and the is NO free relief from them whatsoever.

Edited by Ruler
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5 hours ago, Ruler said:

On what grounds?

It has been mentioned here that the purpose of such swale is to collect and divert water. This is from the Definition of  Penalty Area:

A penalty area is:
•• Any body of water on the course (whether or not marked by the Committee),
including a sea, lake, pond, river, ditch, surface drainage ditch or other open
watercourse (even if not containing water),

Seems pretty straightforward to me.  That means also that any water in those swales is NOT Temporary Water and the is NO free relief from them whatsoever.

The photo indicates, to me at least, that there is little or no flow of water, the grass is pretty consistent throughout the swale.  Therefore, this doesn't qualify as a Penalty Area, its not a "body of water on the course".   The Definition of Ground Under Repair basically it says its anything marked as GUR by the Committee, as well as a few other things that are GUR even if not marked.  Under 2F(1) in Committee Procedures, the first paragraph says "In general, when ground conditions are abnormal to the course or it is unreasonable to require a player to play from a specific area, it should be marked as ground under repair".  Given the grade changes between this swale and the surrounding mostly-flat fairway, the Committee could very reasonably decide that it is unreasonable to require a player to play from it.

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48 minutes ago, DaveP043 said:

The photo indicates, to me at least, that there is little or no flow of water, the grass is pretty consistent throughout the swale.  Therefore, this doesn't qualify as a Penalty Area, its not a "body of water on the course".   The Definition of Ground Under Repair basically it says its anything marked as GUR by the Committee, as well as a few other things that are GUR even if not marked.  Under 2F(1) in Committee Procedures, the first paragraph says "In general, when ground conditions are abnormal to the course or it is unreasonable to require a player to play from a specific area, it should be marked as ground under repair".  Given the grade changes between this swale and the surrounding mostly-flat fairway, the Committee could very reasonably decide that it is unreasonable to require a player to play from it.

Well, you may interpret this as you wish. BUT, any ditch or similar designed to collect rain water and/or run it away from the fairway is a Penalty Area by definition, no dispute in there. It does not have to be a 'body of water' as explicitly informed in the Definition: 'even if not containing water'.

As far as GUR is concerned the Committee should not declare any area 'difficult to play from' as GUR just because it is difficult to play from that particular part of the course. GUR means Ground Under Repair indicating there will be a change in the conditions later on. A swale designed to run water is not something to be repaired but is an essential part of the course.

I have a hard time understanding how it is difficult to play from the area in the picture earlier attached. To me is seems as an undulation similar to any course with undulations. Certainly a 2D picture does not do justice to the depth of the swale so the situation may be very different in real life. Nevertheless, that seems to be something specifically designed to be part of that course so IMHO it should not be declared as GUR unless there is a radical change already planned waiting to be executed.

On 10/18/2021 at 7:27 PM, Carl3 said:

My primary course this past year has a goofy par 5 that has this ditch at about 200 yards from the middle set of tees:

 

image.thumb.png.d99b5ed885a2bf28e1c8bc74256b5310.png

Being this about 30" deep, 6 feet or so in width, sometimes wet and considering myself a "golfer"  I would lay up as this was usually an unplayable lie. Now a couple months into playing with a men's group I come to find they they claim a local rule to move the ball out of it. If you are on the downslope they move it back and if on the upslope they move it forward where you have a decent chance of reaching the green in two.

I have a hard time abiding by this "rule".

 

That LR sure is something not supported by the Rules of Golf. No Local Rule may let you advance closer to hole unless there is a Dropping Zone.

Edited by Ruler
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