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Back in the swing

Golfers head to Haymaker driving range Monday

Billy Fink was one of the first golfers to get on the driving range at the Haymaker Golf Course on Monday afternoon. The range is now open to the public, and head professional Hank Franks says he expects the rest of the course to be open to the public next Tuesday.
John F. Russell

— The threat of rain didn’t stop Steamboat’s Bill Fink from heading to Haymaker driving range to hit a few balls Monday.

Fink wasn’t the only person at the city-owned golf course in Steamboat. Haymaker pro Hank Franks said the course is looking good and he’s ready to get rolling.

“Next Tuesday will be the magic day,” Franks said. “That is, weather permitting.”

Franks said he will not be taking any tee times in advance of the opening day, and that golfers will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis on opening day. He admits the approach doesn’t always make him the most popular person this time of year, but with Steamboat’s unsettled spring weather, it’s the only fair way to handle things.

“You never know what’s going to happen,” Franks said. “It could be snowing next week.”

Until then, the course’s driving range will be open for business and the pro shop’s doors will welcome golfers looking to take advantage of the 2007 pre-season pass rates. Golfers can purchase the individual ($950); spouse add-on ($775), junior ($275) and junior add-on at discounted prices. The reduced rates run through April 30 after which they will increase to the higher rates. The cost for an adult season pass increases to $1,150.

Franks said this is a great time for golfers to pull their clubs out and start preparing for the upcoming season. The course recently purchased new mats, and the practice facilities, which include the putting green, practice trap and chipping area, are open for the season.

Golfers can purchase a single basket of balls for $4 or take advantage of the courses discount program that offers 10 baskets for $35, 25 baskets for $80 or 50 baskets for $150. Juniors can get 10 baskets for $20.

Once the course opens, Routt County residents can play 18 holes for $44 or nine holes for $28. In order to qualify as a Routt County resident, golfers must have a valid Routt County drivers license or own property in the county.

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