Tuesday, March 28, 2023

2023 Drainage Update #8

The calendar tells us it is springtime, and we have received some glimpses of dry, spring-like weather only to be followed by more rain. Sooner or later the rain will stop and we'll get back to dry conditions and the golf course is set up to respond well as the new Hybrid Bermuda Santa Anna fairways are waking up. 

In the mean time we in GCM will just keep at it. We tackled an area that needed some attention this past Monday 3/27/23 in front of the #5 green. There were two distinct  ditches that settled leading up to the green and an area directly in the front left of the green that needed some drainage work and leveling as well. 

This work would be hard to do when members were playing, so having a large crew tackle the job on a closed Monday was what we had planned but had been getting rained out until yesterday, 3/27/23. We are putting the finishing touches on the work this morning Tuesday 3/28/23 ahead of what we anticipate are some hardy members looking to get a round in before yet  another storm heading our way this morning. Below are pictures of progress.

Panoramic view of all of the sod removed and the scope of work we planned to accomplish on a sunny Monday in front of #5 green ahead of yet another storm.

5' wide section of sod removed and sand being installed, leveled and compacted in the settled ditch / depression  that spanned the entire width of the fairway. Sod to be replaced soon after.

This is a large area as well to the left of the green that needed leveling and some drainage work.

While digging drainage ditches Enrique dug into some red clay. Unusual in our experience here on this property.

Felipe using a plate compactor on the sod after re-installation. Same plate compactor was used on the sand we leveled the depression with prior to putting the sod back.

Finished product across the fairway.

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

2023 Drainage Update #7

Wet weather just wont let go of us here at Granite Bay and is definitely the story of 2023 so far. Rainfall amounts over the past two weeks have pushed the 2022-2023 rain year into fourth wettest in the last eighteen. Almost 5" of rain in March which is not unusual but almost 2" over the eighteen year average of almost 3".

All of this rain keeps the golf course pretty wet and limits cart traffic as well as GCM progress on projects, however we have been able to react to fluctuating conditions and continue to make progress. below are some pictures of last weeks progress on fixing a drainage issue on the chipping green.

Updated rainfall accumulation data for the 2022-2023 rain year measured by our own GBGC weather station. March accumulation over the past week and a half has pushed the annual amount of rain to almost 31", making this rain season the fourth highest is eighteen years.

Any type of rainfall or even heavy irrigation would back up and hold on the chipping green and it needed to be repaired. This type of repair fit into a nice window between rain events last week.

First step was to remove the sod in front of and adjacent to the area that pooled up to relieve the "soil dam" that appeared after construction settling,  and do some minor grading to create a better opportunity for surface drainage.

As is sometimes the case, once the guys excavated the sod and started grading, we uncovered a band of native decomposed granite native soil that was damming up the surface flow that needed to be excavated. 

After excavating and grading the area in front of the green and actually under part of the putting surface sod itself, we installed a interceptor drain to catch any subsurface or surface water that naturally drains to the front low spot of any green.

This "interceptor" section of drainage in front of the green tied into a new section of drainage 
that the guys installed right through the newly shaped swale in front of the green.

The new main drain tied into a drainage inlet down below the entire main chipping level.

After the drainage work we replaced and tamped  the sod and applied some sand topdressing to the sod seems

Problem solved. 

Monday, March 13, 2023

2023 Drainage Update #6

Drainage work has been the topic of the winter on the golf course here at Granite Bay and for good reason. The historical rainfall average for our area is 24" per year, but in the last eighteen years we have only met or exceeded that average five times, including this year. The eighteen-year average is almost 19", so by both measurements the 2022 - 2023 rain season would be considered a "wet year".

Combine this with us basically working with a new golf course since our 2021 renovation & turf conversion, and it's easy to see that drainage work would become a priority. Additionally, if you consider the new sets of fairway bunkering on #12, which accentuated the "trough" topography of that hole, you can see why we have had to spend so much time on this hole alone. 

Below are more pictures highlighting the details from this week's progress on drainage, despite the weather.  Next week looks wet as well, but we hope to continue during a small window of opportunity late in the week by shifting gears from #12 to the chipping green where we have drainage issues to take care of as well. We will keep you appraised of our plans as the week and weather materializes.

The above chart shows actual rainfall data accumulated by GBGC's on site weather station. As you can see, we have only exceeded the regions historical average five times in eighteen years, got close to this average another two times, so seven out of the eighteen years we were near or over historical average. This does speak to averages in general but supports the notion of the new normal of drier winters, just not the one we are experiencing.

Wet conditions but clear skies allowed us to get started on the next section of drainage work on #12

We knew it was a bit risky to get started with the weather forecast we were looking at but took the risk and had to scramble to get gravel in the drainage ditches during a rainstorm.

Here is the drainage crew filling ditches in the rain on Wednesday. The crew finished up on Thursday ahead of rain that started in the afternoon right on schedule and contributed to overnight rainfall amounts of over 1.25".

Overhead view highlighting the lack of standing water in the area's that were addressed over the past two weeks after the 1.25"+ of rain on Thursday PM through early Friday AM. 

December picture of #12 during a rainstorm. The difference between then and now would be that when the rain stopped, our new drainage would remove the accumulated water quickly allowing the fairway to dry out more rapidly.

#12's drainage progress over mostly the month of February 2023. Over 1000' of drainage and still more to do at the beginning of the hole.

Liborio, Mauricio, Felipe under Enrique's leadership (L to R) are primarily responsible for this essential drainage work. 

Chipping Green Drainage

We need to do some drainage work on the chipping green as well, and next week could provide the opportune window to get this job done between storms. We will communicate through the Golf Shops morning e-mail if this window opens on Wednesday, and we decide to tackle it. The chipping area will have to be closed at a minimum while we are doing the work. More to come on this.

Saturday, March 4, 2023

2023 Drainage Update #5

I mentioned last week that it is not prudent  to conduct any type of earth disruption work during wet, rainy weather. I also mentioned that the forecast at that time was for rain almost all week, but that forecasts can change, and all we needed was a two-to-three-day window to continue our work. And that is exactly what transpired, allowing us to complete another 200' of drainage on #12 between storms. Below are pictures of the progress for those that are interested.

Forecast from last week did indeed change giving us the opportunity on Thursday & Friday to complete another 200' between the forward bunkers on #12. We actually made preparations by laying out plywood on Wednesday afternoon despite it being pretty wet after it rained all day the previous day.

The fairway was still wet after 2" of rain despite the window of clearing weather. 
We purchased 40 sheets of additional plywood so we wouldn't damage the turf,
which allowed us to not only work in the less-than-ideal wet conditions, but also
work in the frozen mornings that followed this last series of cold storms.

Enrique and crew laying the plywood out and cutting the sod  on Wednesday. 
the first clear day after recent  cold storms that started Friday 2/24/23 and ended
 Tuesday 2/28/23 producing 2" of rain.

Good visual of underground drainage install. This is a Y junction of 4" 
perforated pipe on a bedding of 1" found drain rock 

Above and below are good visuals of the DI (drainage inlet) tie-in and the beginning of the drain 
filled with gravel.

Sod re-installed over the gravel drainage pattern.

Overhead view of the two sections of drainage that was completed the past two weeks between rain storms.

Looks like we have a very similar pattern coming up next week as we did this week. If this pattern holds, we will go for another 200' of drainage on #12, middle of the week.