Do Golf Courses Close When It Rains?

View of the golf carts on the course through a window covered with rain drops.

Golf courses remain open most of the time, even during rain. However, if it rains heavily, golf courses are likely to be closed for the safety of the players.

Whether you’re an avid golfer or just take a few swings every now and then, you’ve probably wondered what happens to golf courses when it rains. Do golf courses close when it rains? Do the players have to pack up and go home? We will discuss all those questions in depth.

Do golf courses close when it rains?

Any seasoned golfer knows that playing in the rain is tough. The balls tend to fly unpredictably, the greens are more slippery, and it’s overall just more difficult to concentrate when you’re getting wet. But do golf courses actually close when it rains? The answer is: it depends. Some golf courses have built-in drainage systems that allow them to stay open even during heavy rainstorms, and others don’t and have to shut down.

Others may close only if the rain is accompanied by high winds, as this can cause tree limbs and other debris to fall onto the course. In general, though, most golf courses will stay open unless the weather is truly dangerous. So next time you’re feeling like playing a round in the rain, go ahead and give it a try – you might be surprised at how well you do.

Reasons why golf courses close when it rains 

There are a number of reasons why some golf courses close when it rains. Here is a detailed look at each of the reasons:

1. The Flight of Golf Balls Gets More Difficult To Control.

Golf courses close when it rains because the balls fly erratically, carry less distance, and are more difficult to control. The water makes the ground softer, so the ball doesn’t bounce as much. It also makes the grass grow longer, so the ball doesn’t roll as much. 

The wet conditions also make it harder to grip the club and swing it evenly. When it rains, golfers have to be more careful not to hit the ball too hard or too high. If they do, the ball will likely go into a pond or bunker. In short, golf courses close because it’s just too difficult to play in the rain.

2. The Greens Are More Slippery And Difficult To Putt On.

Golf courses close when it rains because the greens are more slippery and difficult to putt on. The fairways can also be very slippery, making it difficult to get a ball up and down. In addition, the rain can compact the soil, making it harder for roots to take hold and causing the turf to thin out. 

As a result, golfers typically prefer to play on dry, sunny days. However, with proper care, golf courses can be kept in good condition even during periods of heavy rain. 

3. It’s More Difficult To Concentrate When You’re Getting Wet.

Golf courses close when it rains because the conditions make it more difficult to concentrate. When the ground is wet, your feet slip, and your balance is off. Golfers need to be able to make swings without worrying about their footing. The wetter the ground, the harder it is to stay steady. 

In addition, wet conditions can also affect the trajectory of a ball, making it more difficult to control where it lands. For these reasons, golfers typically don’t play in the rain. 

However, some hardy souls will don their rain gear and head out for a round. Just be warned that you’re likely to see a lot of lost balls and frustrated players if you venture out onto the course during a storm.

Reasons why other golf courses remain open while raining

Of course, not all golf courses shut down when it starts to pour. Some golf courses do remain open come rain or come sunshine. There are a few reasons for this.

1. The Golf Course Has A Built-In Drainage System.

Golf courses with a built-in drainage system can remain open even during heavy rains. The drains help to remove water from the surface of the course, preventing puddles from forming. 

In addition, the drainage system can also help to reduce the amount of mud that is tracked onto the greens. As a result, golfers can enjoy their game even on days when other courses are forced to close.

2. The Weather Is Not Too Bad.

If the rain is accompanied by high winds, golf courses may close because tree limbs and other debris may fall onto the course. However, if the weather is not too bad, the courses will be able to remain open. Unless the weather is truly hazardous, most golf courses will remain open.

3. The Course Is Made Of Artificial Turf.

Artificial turf is designed to withstand heavy use and bad weather. As a result, golf courses that are made of artificial turf can remain open even when it rains. This type of turf is also easier to maintain.

4. There Are Covered Areas On The Course.

Some golf courses have covered areas that allow golfers to take shelter from the rain. These areas typically have benches or chairs where golfers can sit and wait for the rain to pass. In addition, some courses have heating facilities that can be used during damp, cold, and stormy weather.

5. The Course Is Located In A Warm Climate.

Golf courses in warm climates are less likely to close due to rain. This is because the ground dries quickly, and the conditions are not as treacherous. In addition, golfers in warm climates are used to playing in the rain and are typically more prepared for wet conditions. As a result, they are less likely to cancel their tee times when the weather forecast calls for rain. 

Golf courses located in cold climates, on the other hand, are more likely to close due to snow and ice. These conditions can make it difficult or even dangerous to play golf. As a result, many courses will close their doors during winter storms. If you’re planning on playing golf in a cold climate, be sure to check the forecast in advance and plan accordingly.

6. The Course Is Open To The Public.

Many golf courses are private, meaning that only members are allowed to play. However, there are also public courses that anyone can play. These courses typically have more relaxed rules and are more likely to stay open during bad weather. This is because they rely on revenue from green fees to stay in business. As a result, they can’t afford to close their doors for extended periods of time. 

If you’re looking for a place to play golf on a rainy day, then a public course is your best bet. Just be prepared for some wet conditions and possibly a few delays.

Tips to play during bad weather

Yes, most golf courses close down when it rains. However, if your favorite golf course stays open through the rains, you may need the following tips to truly enjoy a rainy round of golf:

  1. Dress for the weather: Make sure to wear proper clothing when playing in the rain. This includes waterproof shoes, a rain jacket, and rainproof pants. In addition, you may want to bring along extra towels to wipe down your face, hands, and clubs after each shot.
  2. Be prepared for delays: Expect that your game will take longer than usual when playing in the rain. This is because you will likely have to take more time between shots to avoid getting wet. In addition, it can take longer to find balls that have been hit into the rough.
  3. Check the forecast before heading out: Before heading out to play golf, be sure to check the weather forecast. This will give you an idea of what conditions you can expect.


Different golf courses have different policies when it comes to rain. Some remain open, while others choose to close in order to close down and protect the course. It’s important to confirm with the golf course before heading out in case of rainy or stormy weather conditions. This will help avoid any disappointment if the course is unexpectedly closed.

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