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Out of Bounds Fencing Question


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Originally Posted by Fourputt

he still proceeded incorrectly by taking a drop TWO clublengths from the point where the ball lay.  He was actually proceeding correctly under Rule 28 for an unplayable lie, only he didn't add the penalty stroke, but it was not the right procedure for taking relief without penalty from an obstruction.  He might have accidentally ended up dropping in a correct manner, but by not first determining the nearest point of complete relief and then measuring ONE clublength from that spot (not nearer to the hole), he may well have missed the correct drop area.  Since the rule only requires the player to drop in the correct spot, he doesn't have to follow the entire measuring process as long as he knows that he is in the right area.  In this case he may or he may not have found the right spot by his method - there is always some risk involved when taking a shortcut.


Good point.  I remember this according to the rule that "free" drops give you 1 club length, while "bought" drops (paid for by a penalty stroke) give you 2.  Are there any exceptions?  It seems to cover the cases I can think of off the top of my head.

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Originally Posted by Fourputt

Just to keep beating this one:

There are several misconceptions here.  The first one has been addressed about taking relief from any out of bound marker. but...... by not first determining the nearest point of complete relief and then measuring ONE clublength from that spot (not nearer to the hole), he may well have missed the correct drop area...



Actually I pointed out the one club-length issue in my post (#6), but it can't hurt to mention it again.

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Originally Posted by zeg

Good point.  I remember this according to the rule that "free" drops give you 1 club length, while "bought" drops (paid for by a penalty stroke) give you 2.  Are there any exceptions?  It seems to cover the cases I can think of off the top of my head.


No exceptions, that is the way it goes.

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One big difference though is that when taking relief without penalty, in that NPR plus one clublength, you are guaranteed (required) to take complete relief for lie, stance and swing.  If the ball returns to any point where the original interference still occurs, then you get to redrop.  With the penalty relief of 2 clublengths there is no such blanket guarantee.

For relief from a water hazard the ball must not come to rest back in the hazard, but there is no such guarantee for stance or swing.  The ball could still end up in a lie where it is outside of the hazard while your stance would be in the hazard or your swing might be obstructed by a tree or brush or weeds in the hazard.  For ball unplayable, there are no guarantees at all.  After dropping, the ball may return to the same exact spot which you were taking relief from, but it is still in play and if it's unplayable, tough luck.

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  • 4 weeks later...

This is interesting because one of the courses I play has a chain link fence that is the barrier/indicator to the out of bounds, running parallel to the entire hole. I have seen everyone take a free drop if they are near it (and it affects their backswing).
I wonder if there is local rule in place that allows this.

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Originally Posted by JerseyThursday

This is interesting because one of the courses I play has a chain link fence that is the barrier/indicator to the out of bounds, running parallel to the entire hole. I have seen everyone take a free drop if they are near it (and it affects their backswing).

I wonder if there is local rule in place that allows this.



Would be very odd if a local rule made that a FREE drop.

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  • 2 weeks later...


Originally Posted by JerseyThursday

This is interesting because one of the courses I play has a chain link fence that is the barrier/indicator to the out of bounds, running parallel to the entire hole. I have seen everyone take a free drop if they are near it (and it affects their backswing).

I wonder if there is local rule in place that allows this.

Such a Local Rule is not permitted. It would be waiving a Rule in the form of the Definition of an Obstruction. See Decision 33-8/14.

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Originally Posted by Beachcomber

The guy I was playing with said that due that the fence was an OB fencing... I had to:

1. Take an unplayable lie, and a penalty stroke with a drop to the nearest relief point, or

2. Play it as it lies


He was nearly right.

When take taking relief from an unplayable position you have three options all with a penalty.

1) Go back and play from where you originally played.

2) Drop on a line from the hole, through the position where the ball lies as far back as you wish.

3) Drop within two club lengths from the position of the ball ( not the fence ) not nearer the hole.

The ball may, when dropped, roll upto 2 cl from the spot it hit the ground providing it does not roll nearer the hole.

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  • 3 weeks later...


Originally Posted by Rulesman

Such a Local Rule is not permitted. It would be waiving a Rule in the form of the Definition of an Obstruction. See Decision 33-8/14.



I found out how they got around it. Outside of the fence, about 2 feet away, is a concrete ledge and then a culvert. They painted a white stripe on that ledge, the entire length of the hole.

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I found out how they got around it. Outside of the fence, about 2 feet away, is a concrete ledge and then a culvert. They painted a white stripe on that ledge, the entire length of the hole.

That's what I was thinking could be done... Just don't use the obstruction as an OB marker, just an obstruction that happens to be a couple inches inside the OB marker. :-P

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