News from Rules

News From Rules                                                                                  August 8, 2021

Our Charbonneau Golf Club General Manager has determined all repaired and reseeded drainage areas as “no play zones” and players must take free relief from those areas. Please help these areas heal by not playing out of them and avoiding foot and cart traffic over them. Stumps remaining anywhere in the general area, resulting from the ice storm, have been designated ground under repair and players may take free relief from the stump (see Rule 16.1.b).

As a reminder, you may not take free relief from tree roots associated with any remaining stump or tree anywhere on the course or a ball within the small trees marking 125 yards to the hole. Your options are to play the ball as it lies, decide your ball is unplayable (see Rule 19.1), or play the ball from where your previous stroke was made under penalty of stroke and distance (see Rule 18.1).

News from Rules 8-6-21

How to Repair a Divot


Putting and the Flag

Dear CWGA members,

As many of you may have already noticed, our golf course  has made a first step in transitioning back to “normal” golf.   

Instead of the flag sticks set in an above ground “cup”, the course has now lowered the flag stick holder into the cup by about an inch.   This is intended to allow us to putt into the hole while still not needing to touch the flagstick.  Consequently, the “5 foot gimme rule” is no longer available.  We must putt in to complete our score for the hole.

As expected, this is an imperfect set up, because the putt sometimes bounces off the metal ring in the cup and does not stay in the cup.  Therefore, we are asking all of you to fairly assess your putt.  If you decide that your putt would have fallen into the cup and stayed there IF there was no flag stick ring interference, then your putt is good.  Mark your score and move on to the next hole.  You may ask your foursome for their opinion, but your decision is final.

We are asking all CWGA members to keep your own score.  You must  post when you play on Thursdays with our club.  

Thank you for your cooperation during this transition.

Suzanne Hatton, Rules Committee Chair

Summary of New Rules

These are formatted to be the front and back on a 4X6 sheet if you wish to download and laminate them.  (Click Summary of New Rules link below)


Embedded Ball in Rough – free drop in relief area behind ball from rough or fairway

Club Length – Longest club in bag except putter

Penalty Areas – (formerly water hazards) allow 2 club length lateral drop and can move loose impediments and ground club -1 penalty stroke

Dropping – must be knee height; if drop from shoulder – 1 penalty stroke

Substituting a Ball – allowed when taking free or penalty relief (a drop)

Search Time of Lost Ball – reduced from 5 minutes to 3 minutes

Moving Ball While Searching – no penalty if accidental; replace

Lost Ball or Out of Bounds – new option for fairway relief – 2 stroke penalty; not allowed to hit provisional ball if taking this option

Ball Accidentally Strikes You, Equipment, etc. – no penalty

Unplayable Lie – stroke and distance or drop 2 club lengths – 1 penalty stroke (not new rule)

Ready Golf – play when ready without holding up or interfering with others in general area, tee or on green

Removing Loose Impediments in Bunker – allowed no penalty but cannot move ball

New Bunker Option – drop outside bunker back on line from ball to flag – 2 stroke penalty

Repairing Damage on Green – can repair most all damage except normal wear – no penalty

Line of Play on Putting Green – touching line of play on green allowed

Ball Accidently Moved on Green – no penalty if accidently moved by player or opponents, replace on original spot

Hitting Flagstick – no penalty whether in hole or lying on green; play ball where it lies

Double Hitting Ball –no penalty; counts as 1 stroke and play ball where it lies

Maximum Score – allows a player to pick up and take maximum score without penalty

Ball Accidently Moved By Natural Forces on Green – if lifted and replaced, replace on original spot; if not lifted and replaced yet, play from new spot

Summary of New Rules


MAXIMUM SCORE – For Day’s Play only (does not include CWGA Tournaments), a player’s score for each hole is capped at a maximum of 9 strokes. A player who does not complete a hole (“picks up”) will not be disqualified but will get the maximum score for the hole. Players are encouraged to pick up when they have reached the maximum score. For handicap purposes, a player must post their actual score or, if they pick up and do not complete the hole, must post the most likely score but may not post more than their equitable stroke control (ESC) for the hole.

PENALTY AREAS (Including former water hazards) – A penalty area is any body of water on the course and other parts of the course defined by the Golf Club as a penalty area and shall be played as red staked penalty areas whether marked with a stake or not. If it is known or virtually certain a ball is in the penalty area on any hole, the player has these options, each for one penalty stroke: Take relief under Rule 17.1 or as an extra option, drop the original ball or another ball in the dropping zone only when the dropping zone has been clearly marked by a white circle or tee markers. The dropping zone is a relief area under Rule 14.3. If no dropping zone has been marked, players may only take relief under Rule 17.1.

ADDITIONAL OPTION FOR LOST BALL OR BALL OUT OF BOUNDS – When a player’s ball has not been found or it is known or virtually certain to be out of bounds, the player may drop a ball, for two penalty strokes, in an “appropriately determined relief area” that is in an area between the point where the ball is estimated to have come to rest or gone out of bounds and the edge of the fairway of the hole being played, that is in the general area, and not nearer the hole. But, the player may not use this option if the ball has come to rest in a penalty area, for an unplayable ball, or if the player has played a provisional ball under stroke and distance.

PRACTICE – Rule 5.2b is modified in this way: A player may practice on the competition course before or between rounds.


MOWER RUTS – In the general area, areas of deep ruts and damage caused by mower tires are treated as ground under repair from which relief is allowed under Rule 16.1b. Areas of mud which do not have deep mower ruts are not considered ground under repair unless marked as such.

PREFERRED LIES (Winter Rules) – If adverse course conditions make parts of the general area cut to fairway height or less, the Head Golf Professional may determine “preferred lies” or “winter rules” to be in effect to promote fair play or help protect the course. Under this rule, when a player’s ball lies in a part of the general area cut to fairway height or less on any hole, the player may take free relief and play the ball by placing the original ball or another ball no more than 6 inches from the spot of the original ball no nearer the hole. The ball must be placed in the general area and may be cleaned while lifted.

EMBEDDED BALL – In accordance with Rule 16.3 Embedded Ball, when a player’s ball lies anywhere in the general area in its own pitch-mark made as a result of the player’s previous stroke and any part of the ball is below the level of the ground, the ball is determined to be embedded. A ball does not necessarily have to touch soil to be embedded (for example, grass and loose impediments may be between the ball and the soil). The reference point for taking relief is the spot right behind where the ball is embedded. A ball must be dropped in and come to rest within one club-length from the reference point, not nearer the hole and in the general area.