Temuka Golf Club back to 18 holes after flooding in May

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Temuka Golf Club back to 18 holes after flooding in May

Timaru Golf Club Course Supervisor Phil Donehue (left) and President Willie Powell demonstrate how high the water was during the floods in late May when the Temuka River overflowed.

Valentina Bellomo / stuff

Timaru Golf Club Course Supervisor Phil Donehue (left) and President Willie Powell demonstrate how high the water was during the floods in late May when the Temuka River overflowed.

The Temuka golf course is back in full play after floods up to two meters deep flowed over fairways and greens in May.

Course instructor Phil Donehue said the water from the nearby railway bridge over the roaring Temuka River was diverted across the course when flood debris piled up against the piers.

During the flood in May 2021, rubble piled up against the pillars of the railway bridge over the Temuka River.

JOHN BISSET / stuff

During the flood in May 2021, rubble piled up against the pillars of the railway bridge over the Temuka River.

“The water covered everything, you could see the flags, but no grass. In places it was two to two meters high.

“The irrigation shed swam away and landed 400 meters away.”

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Of the 220 club members, more than 50 helped in the first 24 to 48 hours to scrape the “sticky” 25 millimeters of mud from the greens as soon as the water receded, he said.

It’s not the first time the course has been flooded, as it was closed for about six months in 1986, while the water receded pretty quickly during the 2006 flood so it was still playable, Donehue said.

The Temuka Golf Club course has dried out and is now fully functional.

Valentina Bellomo / stuff

The Temuka Golf Club course has dried out and is now fully functional.

Donehue estimated that around 300 to 400 man hours had gone into cleaning up, and there were about 50 more to clean up and clean up the rest of the silt.

“We mowed some fairways for the first time in three months.”

A view from the clubhouse of the Temuka Golf Club of the 10th hole when the course was flooded at the end of May 2021.

Delivered

A view from the clubhouse of the Temuka Golf Club of the 10th hole when the course was flooded at the end of May 2021.

Club President Willie Powell said the course had been completely closed for a month, with 10 holes reopening in late June and the remaining six holes two weeks ago.

“It was frustrating for the members and the club. We were very grateful for the members’ understanding. They were very patient, ”she said.

The Temuka Golf Club's underwater course at the end of May floods.  View from the clubhouse to the ninth hole.

Delivered

The Temuka Golf Club’s underwater course at the end of May floods. View from the clubhouse to the ninth hole.

The course is not insured because the premiums for loss of earnings are too high, Powell said. She estimates it cost around $ 1500 a week while the club was closing due to the cancellation of tournaments and penants.

“There were no green fees, no cash receipts and no car rentals.”

Powell said Geraldine Denfield and Pleasant Point golf clubs are open to mutual rights for Temuka members so they won’t be entirely without their favorite sport.

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