GlenEagles golf course makes earliest opening ever

We're not even halfway through March, and local golf courses are already pulling back the tarps.

Last year, the tarps didn't come off until March 13

The Links of GlenEagles opened for the season on Thursday, March 10, 2016. (GlenEagles/Facebook)

Mild winter weather and a nearly snow-less February have made it possible for GlenEagles to set a new record for its earliest opening this week.

Last year, Cochrane's The Links of GlenEagles course opened on March 13. In 2014, it didn't remove the tarps until the last week of March. 

"It's been so mild, and everyone's asking, and it gets to that point when all the stars align and you can go," said Slade King with Play Golf Calgary, which operates three local courses including GlenEagles, about Thursday's opening.

"Everybody's just chomping at the bit."

Devon Seiler prepares for his first drive of the season at Fox Hollow Golf Course in Calgary on Feb. 16. (Mike Spenrath/CBC)

The tee sheet has completely sold out through the weekend, as excited golfers prepare to hit the greens, he said.

King said the grass is in good condition, and crews were even beginning to worry that temperatures were climbing too high under the tarps in this double-digit weather. 

"We try not to watch calendars. More so we watch the condition of the turf and how it's progressing," he said. 

King, who claims he has six different weather apps on his phone, said he'll be monitoring the forecasts in the weeks to come to see if temperatures are expected to dip below -10 C, at which point the tarps will have to be reapplied.

Some golfers, like pro Wes Hefferman, were hitting the driving range in early February. (Evelyne Asselin/CBC)

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