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Playing Tony Butler Golf Course In The Rain

During a visit to play some golf in the Rio Grande Valley and to escape the cold and rain from North Texas (which didn't work!) we played Tony Butler Golf Course in Harlingen after a long night of drenching rain. The rain was badly needed, but it made playing Tony Butler Golf Course the next morning very interesting.

The cart paths were more like inland waterways and driving through them felt like riding on a wild boat ride at Six Flags amusement park. I was having fun driving the cart, but my wife decided to walk most of the course to keep her clothes dry.

Plowing through the water

But walking the fairways wasn't much better - puddles, rivers, and what seemed like natural ponds were all over the course. I thought that we were in Minnesota - the "land of 10,000 lakes!" The ponds on the golf course were overflowing and in some of the bigger and deeper puddles on the fairways I expected to see some gaters, kayakers, or fish but all I saw was my golf ball. According to the golf rules, if you hit into "standing water," you can remove the ball from the water and drop it one club length away. I tried that and there was no standing water but the fairway was still very wet and my swing ended with mud, grass, and water showering my entire body and my ball dripping 50 yards into the next puddle - I quickly decided to forget the golf rules and drop where ever it was dry.

During our round it was still overcast and drizzling and the forecast was for more rain and it was cart path only and we had the whole course to ourselves - the pro shop staff was shocked when we showed up for our tee time! But it turns our there were two other fools out playing plus jackrabbits, squirrels, lots of water fowl, and a hugh tarantula swimming in a big puddle of water on the cart path!

With only two other players on the course, the pace of play would normally be fantastic, but it was hampered thanks to cart path only and long detours to avoid the standing water as well as trying to find a dry place to hit your ball from. On the ninth hole we passed a fellow golfer going the other way and he stated "and I thought I was the only fool out here."

The water did have some good news - we didn't have to hit out of the bunkers because all of them were soaking wet and most were half full of water. All that sand, water, and palm trees swaying in the breeze made me think of the beach and I was tempted to head back to the camper to get my beach chair and a pina colada!

But avid golfers don't let any of that stuff get them down or discourage them from finishing a round and after our round and over a cold beer, we did agree that we had a unique and fun experience! But probably would not do it again! My pants, hat, shoes, golf balls, windbreaker, and golf bag are all wet and or muddy! The cart was covered with mud and it looked like it had been in an off road mud race.

Can't wait to play Tony Butler Golf Course when it's dry. And I sure liked the cute little clay cowboy hats that were used as tee box markers. Here is a link to or review of Tony Butler Golf Course.

If you're looking for some good courses in the Rio Grande Valley, check out our list of the Best Rio Grande Valley Golf Courses.