Rule: Abnormal Ground Conditions

 Guess we have our fair share of abnormal ground conditions after weather events, and probably even more interpretations of this definition from what I am told!!

But what is abnormal ground conditions? Is it the same as GUR?

The rules define “an abnormal ground condition as any casual water, ground under repair or hole, cast or runway on the course made by a burrowing animal, a reptile or a bird.”

This definition does not include muddy ground, long grass, or stony ground—unless marked by a white line as GUR or stated in a local rule.

Casual water” is any temporary accumulation of water on the course that is not in a water hazard and is visible before or after you take your stance. A ball is in casual water when it lies in or any part of it touches the casual water.

We have covered sections of this rule previously under GUR on the green, casual water, washouts and casual water in bunkers, and ball on formed pathways. Check out our website under GOLF.

IS soft, mushy earth casual water? No, not unless water is visible on the surface before or after you take your stance.

I press down hard with my foot until water appears on my sole—is this casual water? No, this is not casual water. You must take your stance normally.

What is the status of grass cuttings? If they have been piled for later removal, they are GUR and you are entitled to free relief. Grass cuttings are simply loose impediments and may be removed (but don’t accidently move your ball!)

There are currently many wheel ruts made by mowers—can I get free relief from them? Yes, under our local rules.

Is an aeration hole on the green a hole made by the green keeper GUR? No—no relief (unless they have been declared as GUR by local rule.

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