Spring-like weather and a desire to escape cabin fever due to shelter-in-place orders have enticed local golfers to Bigwood Golf Course north of Ketchum since it opened April 15—under social distancing protocol.
Golfers are raring to go, at Bigwood and also at Sun Valley.
Sun Valley Golf Course’s practice facility opens today, Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Trail Creek front nine opens for the 2020 season Friday, May 1 with tee times from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. (no walk-ins).
Nine-hole greens fee is $40 with or without cart at Sun Valley. Golfers can play 18 holes on a space-available basis for $80, with or without cart.
Reservations are preferred by email (email@example.com) or by phone (208-622-2251).
The social distancing protocol is extensive at Sun Valley and is listed here in a separate article. In the practice facility, stalls are being staged 10 feet apart. You pay for range balls in the pro shop, and the staff assists with the golf balls.
Estimated opening is Friday, May 8 for the complete 18 holes on the Trail Creek course—the nine-hole rate $50 at that time and the 18-hole fee priced at $75.
The back nine at Elkhorn Golf Course is also due to open May 1, but it is members-only for now, with no guest or public play until further notice.
Elkhorn’s practice facility for members-only opens today, Wednesday, with golf balls provided on the driving range.
Call Elkhorn at 208-622-2271. Estimated opening for 18 holes at Elkhorn is also May 8.
At the nine-hole, 3,415-yard Bigwood course, demand has been so high that tee times are being booked three days in advance. New social distancing rules are strict with the COVID-19 crisis inching up on its way to two months, and counting.
“If you want to play golf, this is what needs to be done,” said Geoff Storey, a Bigwood Golf Course employee. “We’re booking out three days in advance.”
On Friday, Storey said he started taking phone calls at 8:15 a.m. and booked out for Monday just 45 minutes later.
Golfers are only allowed to play nine holes per day, the first tee time at 9:45 a.m. and the final tee time at 6 p.m. The early-season rate is $25. Call 208-726-4024 to request a time.
Bigwood pro shop rules are one customer at a time. Golfers are asked to appear no earlier than 15 minutes in advance of their tee time, and then use the one-way system to the pro shop and down to the tarmac.
Only one person at a time is allowed in a tee box, and threesomes and twosomes are the limits. Bottlenecks are to be avoided in every sense, golfers can’t touch the flagsticks, and there are complimentary push carts that are sanitized, often.
Bigwood’s driving range is not open.