It might give ‘over the river and through the woods’ a new meaning if you decide to enjoy the unique pleasures of playing golf during the winter in Virginia. First of all… it’s fun. Fewer players means you don’t have to hurry. You’ll have more chances of getting the tee times that you want and there are many great options for winter golf at the courses around Charlottesville. Our climate in Central VA is very conducive to enjoying outdoor activities during the winter months.
Charlottesville Weather in Winter
Occasionally we have snow but also we have our share of crisp sunny days too. According to the usclimatedata.com charts below, we have only 12 weeks where our wintery weather is likely. And we’ve seen our share of 60-degree days some years during the Christmas season too.
Clothing For Winter Golf in Charlottesville
For outdoor enjoyment, it’s important to dress for the weather. While you normally wear one glove when playing, you will want to wear two gloves in cold weather and you may want to invest in a pair of winter golf gloves or possibly hand and feet warmers too. Dress in loose-fitting layers to allow movement and this allows you to adapt to all parts of the golf course weather as you play. For some reason women seem to need more layers than men need, and I’ve found that high-tech pants prevent the wind or possible precipitation from my skin. A toasty hat keeps your body temperature warmer (all hair vanity should be abandoned in favor of warmth). I tuck a knit scarf into my collar that really prevents the wind from going down my neck.
Winter Golf Course Activities
Winter rates to play the golf courses are much less expensive than ‘In Season’ rates. Although it’s easier to get a tee time, you might experience a delay on some mornings due to frost. Walking on frost can damage the grass, so most courses will delay play until the frost disappears…. for instance, they may change the start time from 7:30 to 10:30… so be sure to call the club on frosty mornings to confirm your time.
If you’ve decided to brave a little snow, colored golf balls are a smart investment. Local courses encourage winter interest in golf: Spring Creek offers golf-ready fitness classes, and Old Trail has an indoor teaching facility you can use even when the weather is howling. If you choose the Stoney Creek golf course at Wintergreen Resort in Nelson County, you can snow ski down the mountains and then play golf… all on the same day.
Keep Realistic Expectations
There’s a good chance you won’t have your best golf game during winter rounds, so pack your ego in your golf bag. Cold weather causes a golf ball to lose approximately 2 yards for every 10 degree temperature drop, so you could experience some distance loss. You can purchase low compression golf balls that negate the effects of the cold. But the upside is… you won’t encounter mosquitoes in the winter either. You could even catch a break if your golf ball bounces off the pond ice and onto the fairway. Be sure to have a camera with you because you’ll likely see some amazing scenery. And most of all, enjoy the magnificence of Central Virginia in the winter, as seen from the serene beauty of a Charlottesville golf course.