With the weather heating up and restrictions starting to ease, the golf season is nearing its peak for the year. After people were stuck inside for months it’s anticipated that domestic travel will see a large increase this summer. Air travel is still a touchy proposition for a lot of people and the summer road trip seems to be a safer option for individuals and groups. If you’ve never experienced golfing on a mountain course this is the year to head to the hills and enjoy the sport at some of the country’s most scenic locales. If you’re used to playing at or near sea level you’ll notice some significant differences when playing at altitude. Today we will look at some tips to playing your best as you go up in elevation.
Our first tip, and potentially the most important, starts long before you tee it up. To enjoy your round at its fullest you’ll want to spend the days leading up to your trip getting hydrated. Nothing can wreck a golf outing faster than not feeling your best or being laid up with a killer headache. Staying hydrated on the course will help you deal with any adverse effects the altitude may have on your body. It’s recommended you drink an extra liter of water per day while at elevation.
Hit the Range
When golfing at altitude the ball travels further but how much further is up for debate. Everyone has a different saying for what altitude does to ball flight; from ten percent added distance, two percent per thousand feet gained, and even the stock add 15 yards, determining your distances can take a lot of guesswork and maybe even a calculator. The best way to dial in your distances is to spend some time on the range before your round. Without the range work, your club selection will struggle and you won’t able to take advantage of the increase in distance.
Stay Within Yourself
With added power comes the urge to swing harder. One of the most important things you can do is play your game. There’s no reason to act like a long drive champion and swing out of your spikes. Let the club do the work, and the added distance will come naturally. Hitting the range in advance will also help you stay within yourself. Instead of trying to nuke a six-iron, you’ll know a smooth five will work just fine. Staying within your own game is important every time you hit the links but it’s even more imperative at elevation.
Golfing at altitude can be a memorable experience if you go into it the right way. There’s nothing like playing the sport we love with dramatic mountain views all around. With a well-struck shot, you might be convinced your ball can clear the peaks in the background. Keep these tips in the back of your head and start planning your mountain golf destination today.
About the Author: Brian Neufeld
Brian Neufeld’s background includes more than 15 years of experience in golf course management, specializing in agronomy. Brian uses his knowledge of the game and best practices in turf sustention to create informative pieces for GolfTourney.com’s readers.