Rules of Golf: Water Hazards

Water hazards are bad enough without all the confusing rules about what to do before and after you end up in the drink. Fortunately, Barry Rhodes is here to explain it all…


8 Responses to Rules of Golf: Water Hazards

  1. John Symonds April 23, 2018 at 2:50 am #

    Dear Barry

    I understand about keeping to the line of last crossing point and flag stick but is there not a further option of taking a penalty drop within 2 club lengths of the last crossing point as long as the dropping point is no nearer the flag. Therefore, in the case of your last diagram – ball going into the water at the back- could the player take a drop to the left of the crossing point (as you look at your diagram) within 2 club lengths as long as he was taking full relief and the dropping point was no nearer the flag. That may be difficult for right handed players but may be OK for lefties. Also, if it were possible, is the player allowed to drop on the green if the geography allowed. It occurs to me that in your second example, it may be possible to get relief no nearer the hole by dropping to the right of the crossing point in your diagram (also possibly on the green??)

  2. John Symonds April 23, 2018 at 2:53 am #

    Hi BArry

    Ref my comment above, I think that may apply to lateral water hazards but not to the yellow ones which was the subject of your examples so I am happy to stand corrected.

    • Barry Rhodes April 23, 2018 at 10:46 am #

      You have correctly answered your first question. The additional ‘2 club-lengths’ option that you describe only applies to lateral water hazards (red lines and/or stakes). I have a separate video for taking relief from lateral water hazards.

      A player may drop a ball on a putting green if the permitted area of relief includes an area that is on the putting green.

  3. Fred kennedy April 23, 2018 at 6:53 am #

    Question, Hdc. difference from the middle tee to the forward tee. How many strokes different. 1. If hdc is from the middle tee 2. If you have a established hdc from the forward tee. 3. Is rule different in tournament play?

    • Barry Rhodes April 23, 2018 at 10:45 am #

      Unlike the Rules of Golf, which are unified across the world, there are a range of different handicapping systems used by national golfing bodies and I do not have any expertise in this area. You should check the handicapping manual of your regional/national golfing body.

  4. Joe Perpiglia April 23, 2018 at 7:19 am #

    You describe scenarios of ball placement from a shot into a water hazard marked with yellow stakes. In one scenario you have one shot going over first water, and going in second water over Green. What are the options if the second water describes the end of the defined golf course?

    • Barry Rhodes April 23, 2018 at 10:45 am #

      If the “second water” is defined as a course boundary the ball is out of bounds and the player must return to where the stroke was made from under penalty of stroke and distance. If this “second water” is marked as a lateral water hazard with red stakes (it does not qualify as a water hazard as it is not possible to drop a ball on the far side), the player must either drop a ball for a penalty stroke within two club-lengths of where it last crossed this margin, not nearer the hole, or if this is not possible, return to where they last played from under penalty of stroke and distance.

  5. Jim Beatty April 23, 2018 at 5:55 pm #

    You should get up with the Golf Channel Amateur Tour and maybe all players get Your Blog . Very Well Done

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