Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The Island Goes Naked

Approach to short par four 5th - one of the best fairways anywhere
When was the last time you saw a naked man on the golf course?

I’m guessing you don’t have to give that too much thought.

At The Island Golf Club, north of Dublin City, there is a beach just over the dunes to the right of the 3rd hole. It is out of sight and this is where nude sunbathers – mostly older men – come to
hang out (sorry).

Standing on the 3rd tee, on a perfect sunny day with the temperatures above 20 degrees, nude sunbathers were a very possible and unwelcome hazard to be considered. It was no surprise when I carved my drive into those very dunes; it was a pleasant surprise when I retrieved my ball with no nudity involved.
The dunes on the right of the 3rd. Fear them.
The par five 15th at The Island.
I was playing with friends – Mike and Mary – who were over from New Jersey. The last time I played with them was at The CaliforniaClub, outside San Francisco, in April 2014. They were in Ireland for a quick tour of the east coast of Ireland’s best links (Co. Louth, Portmarnock, Royal Dublin, The Island), and this was their last day. The weather made it a glorious way for them to finish their trip - especially as the day before they had chosen not to play Royal Dublin in the deluge that blanketed the country.

And The Island couldn't have been in better condition. It was absolutely perfect. If you want to see the sort of work that goes into a course, follow the tweets of the club's superintendent, Dave Edmondson.
The brilliant, short and very narrow par four 14th.
I got the impression Mike and Mary were disappointed they hadn’t lost more balls. They were carrying a large bag of them, shipped from America, and they’d anticipated severe losses over the course of their trip. They’d failed in that regard and, at the end of the round, the bag was thrust into my hands. Thirty golf balls add considerable weight, and Mike and Mary were travelling light.

That should keep my golf bag full for a while – to the point that the next time I slice a ball up into those dunes on the 3rd, I won’t even go looking. Who knows what other balls I might find.

The Island Golf Club Website
The Island Golf Club Photos

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