Durham City Golf Club - 15/08/16 | Kilburnlad | Golf | Diary

Durham City Golf Club - 15/08/16

We took our clubs to Durham and played the Durham City course with Helen's mum, who's recently joined, having only taken up golf a couple of years ago. On a beautiful sunny day we teed off at 13.24 on this picturesque and well-maintained course. What could go wrong?

I took my 5-wood and left the driver at home. On the 1st, a par 5, the tee shot went a little right but the next 5-wood was a corker at 184 yards. Unfortunately I then put a hybrid shot into the trees to the right but managed to play out with a 7-iron, and then chip on with the same club for 5. Two putts gave me a nett bogey 7. Not a bad start.

The second is a par 3 and my 5-wood again went right. I chipped on with the 7-iron but needed three putts to finish for a nett bogey 5.

The 3rd has the River Browny running along the right so I forsook the 5-wood and teed off with my 20 degree hybrid. It went over trees to the left but when I reached the ball it wasn't in trouble. Trees impeded a forward shot so I chipped out to the middle of the fairway. Another good 5-wood got me just short of the green from where I pitched on with the 9-iron and two putted for a nett bogey 6. So far, so good.

The 4th wasn't so successful. The 5-wood off the tee again went right, this time into rough perilously close to the out-of-bounds markers. I played out with a hybrid and then was short with an 8-iron pitch to the green. A 7-iron chip was too strong and went off the back of the green, needing another gentle chip back on. Three putts for 8 then robbed me of a point as it gave me a nett double bogey 6.

The par 3, 5th was more successful. My hybrid tee shot was to the right of the green and my gap wedge chip was woefully short, but two putts gave me a nett par 4.

I again played my 20 degree hybrid off the tee on the 6th and at 175 yards it was better than some of my drives. My 7-iron shot to the green wasn't clean and didn't make it, so I chipped with an 8-iron to get on. This is the index 1 hole so being on in 4 was good going. Unfortunately another three putt left me with a nett bogey 7, a missed opportunity.
Hole 7 - Durham City Golf Club
The par 3, 7th is a pretty little hole. See the image (right) from the Durham City Golf Club site. I put my tee shot in the bunker but managed a good clearance with the sand wedge and single putted. A nett birdie.

The 8th should have gone better but I didn't take my Garmin GPS device out with me and made bad club selections. I again used the hybrid off the tee, and then took the same club to get me about 100 yards from the green. My 8-iron was rubbish and the following 9-iron went off the green to the right, needing a 7-iron chip on. Now on 5, I only had one shot in hand for a point but in fact needed three putts for an 8 and my second blobbed hole.

If the 8th was bad, the 9th was a disaster. My hybrid tee shot went into rough and I played out with an 8-iron only gaining about 70 yards. The following hybrid shot was poor as was the next 9-iron. Trying to pitch over the bunker I then put a gap wedge shot into it for 5. Worse was to come, as after four attempts to get out of the bunker I picked up, totally disgusted. What had been a relatively good round was now a non-scoring event as far as stroke play was concerned as I didn't finish the hole.

Things didn't improve greatly on the 10th. I again took the hybrid off the tee but went too close to the out-of-bounds line and ditch, which is immediately on the right as you tee off. I did eventually find the ball in the ditch but had already dropped and played a hybrid a bit too far into the edge of some trees. I got out with a 7-iron and then used the same club to pitch onto the green, where two putts gave me a nett double bogey 7.

The par 5, 11th was better. After a hybrid off the tee, two good 5-woods and another hybrid got me to the green in 4. Two putts gave me a nett par 6.

On the 12th I didn't consult the course layout booklet and therefore didn't allow for the ditch at 150 yards, which the ball rolled into. A drop and a cleanly hit hybrid put me into the green-side bunker for 4. I got out with the sand wedge but then three putted for a nett double bogey 7.

The 13th seemed a fairly straightforward hole but it was index 2. Two 5-woods and an 8-iron got me on the green for three but then I three putted for a nett par 6, but it should have been a nett birdie.

The 14th is another par 5. My 5-wood off the tee put me among some trees from where I pitched out with my 7-iron. Two 5-woods then got me on the green for 4, but yet again a three putt spoiled the hole, giving me a nett bogey 7.

The 15th is a longish par 3 and I put my hybrid shot to the right of the green, but the green is elevated. I chipped up with the gap wedge but got it a bit thin, ending up in the large bunker at the back of the green. The pin was also towards the back of the green, and the green itself slopes away from the bunker. I knew that if I was too strong with my bunker shot the ball would run off the green, so I tried to be gentle. This never works out of bunkers and in the event it took me three to get out, and even then the ball rolled to the bottom of the green. Three putts were needed to get me down from there, this all adding up to a desperate 9. A nett quadruple bogey!

After the disaster on the 15th, the 16th went quite well. My 5-wood tee shot wasn't struck well and only made 90 yards but another 5-wood and a hybrid got me on the green, and two putts gave me a nett birdie 5. My handicap gave me two shots on this hole, which I thought was quite generous.

The 17th was another melt down. I completely miss-hit the hybrid tee shot, driving the ball into the long rough only 30 yards from the tee. I hit out with a 9-iron then hit another lack-lustre hybrid shot, followed by an 8-iron that was supposed to go over trees to cut the corner of the dog leg, but actually went straight. Another 8-iron got me close to the green from where I pitched on with my gap wedge. I was then on 6 and needed two putts to finish with a nett triple bogey 8.

At least I finished well. The 18th is a fairly short par 4 and a 5-wood off the tee followed by another got me on the green for 2. I nearly putted for 3, but needed a tap-in for 4, a nett birdie.

Hole 18 Durham City - 15 August 2016

In the end it was a mixture of some really good shots and others that I would rather forget. I had 38 putts, which reflects the fact that the greens were quite difficult, with plenty of contours to deal with. Chipping close to the pin was essential, but not something I did often enough. I didn't have a valid stroke play total as I picked up at the 9th, but I had 59 on the back 9, and it would have been similar on the front if I hadn't picked up. Wasting 7 shots getting out of bunkers obviously didn't help, and three-putting four times didn't help either.

My experiment in using the 5-wood off the tee showed it to be almost as wayward as my driver (it's obviously me not the clubs) so I shall put the driver back in the bag.

Here's the Game Golf scorecard remembering that I picked up on the 9th.

Scorecard - 15 August 2016

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