Freak Storm Leaves Montrose Golf Club Covered In Sand
Montrose Golf Club in Scotland, the fifth-oldest course in the world, is very near to the sea and currently looks like a beach.
The 1562 Medal Course at the club was deluged in sand after “biblical” weather conditions.
Strong winds blew sand from the beach onto the course, leaving bunkers and holes completely filled in and a “thick carpet” of sand across the 2nd fairway.
The 2nd hole was affected the worst and has been out of play after the sandstorm on Monday.
Greenkeepers have been working hard to get the hole back in play, although it isn’t expected to be playable until an industrial blower is brought in to help.
Watch the video of the storm below –
Head Greenkeeper Darren McLoughlin told the Courier, “The weather was absolutely biblical.
“I have been here for six months myself. I’m told the first time this happened was last year but not to this extent. This is the worst they have ever seen it.
“This is a result of coastal erosion, the dunes slightly just retreating towards the golf course.
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“It [the wind] blows up towards the course, to the second fairway and leaves this fairly thick carpet of sand; and then the fairway is basically unplayable. I have never seen anything like that.
“It is the time of year where the course isn’t as busy. If this had happened in April-May, that causes us huge issues.”
He also said that work needs to be done to help prevent the erosion, otherwise more freak events like this will happen.
Due to coastal erosion, the sea is now 70 metres closer to the course than 30 years ago.
Montrose has already lost high tees for the 3rd hole, the 2nd has been re-routed and rock armour has been installed to protect the 1st green and 2nd tees.
But the feeling is that significant further action is required.
“If Montrose does not receive government funding to protect the dunes, it would be a big, big problem,” said Chris Curnin, speaking on behalf of Montrose Golf Links Limited.
“We would have to move the course inland. That would cost millions and would mean losing a slice of golfing history.”