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Friday, June 28, 2013

Lighting Detection and Prediction at WCCC

We've reached the season for strong thunderstorms that pop up out of the blue and often ruin your perfect round of golf or invitational as it often seams to be the case.  Strong lightning has also been a problem in the last two days which brought up a good question a member asked me today after another strong storm hit us.  "When are you going to sound the all clear siren?".  It was at this point that I realized most golfers haven't ever been educated on how lightning detection systems on golf courses work.

The siren system we have for lightning prediction and detection is made by a company called Thor Guard.  Most systems are only lightning detection systems which will detect electromagnetic disturbances in the scanned area and sound the alarm only after lightning has already struck.  The same is true for sounding the all clear.  Normally systems that are detection based must wait for 30 minutes since the last disturbance to give the all clear horn.

Thor Guard systems, the one we have here at WCCC, actually predicts lightning before it strikes.  According to the Thor Guard website, its equipment measures the electrostatic forces that are building between the thundercloud and earth below and can predict when this field, which is capable of producing lighting, enters the zone of which you are monitoring.  This being said, it uses the same technology to predict when it is safe for people to resume their outdoor activities with the least amount of time wasted sitting around and it automatically sounds the alarm.

All that being said, the answer to the question of when anyone at the club will sound the all clear is up to the technology in our system keeping us safe rather than to any one person at the club blowing a horn.

Friday, June 14, 2013


The Fescue that was seeded last spring has gone to seed on its first year of maturity and is starting to turn golden brown.  This color offers great definition on the course and the Fescue provides a nice habitat for wildlife.  The area photographed here is between 8 and 9 South.  The future Fescue areas that are are currently marked out on the South course will be seeded next week and, at maturity, they will look very similar to this area.  

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

South Tees: Update

The tee squaring project on the south course is complete! Holes 1 and 2 are looking great as they were the first ones seeded and the rest aren't far behind.  Next week we are beginning the Fescue seeding project which will move fast! As always, check back frequently for updates.

Friday, June 7, 2013

2013 Walnut Creek Country Club Grounds Staff

Special thanks to all my staff members for all their hard work this spring and for the nice job I know they will do this summer.