The Open rota of courses are famous for their tall, thick fescue grass, and if you’ve ever played links golf overseas or here in the States, you know how difficult it can be to get your ball out of this gnarly stuff. And that’s IF you can find your ball.

Here at Bull’s Bridge Golf Club in South Kent, Conn., fescue grass lines a number of our holes, including the scenic, par-5 opening hole. Hit your second shot left, and your only option is to hack the ball back into play. But that’s okay, you can still make par from the fairway. The key, as I explain in the video tip below, is to get the ball out of trouble and not make more trouble for yourself. That’s how you avoid the big numbers that can cripple a round.




“If you play links golf long enough, you’re definitely going to hit the ball in the fescue. Two-time British Open champion Lee Trevino has a great story about hitting the ball in the fescue. He and his caddie were looking for the ball. His caddie put the bag down, and Trevino said that he found the ball, but lost the bag. Classic Lee Trevino story.

I’ve hit my second shot in the fescue here, and it’s a really terrible lie. My first rule of thumb for my golf students is, if you get the golf ball in trouble, get it out of trouble. So, I have 120 yards to the green here and I have no opportunity to go for the green. The fairway is just 15-20 yards away from me, and that’s my only option.

So, with this nasty grass behind the ball, I’m going to have to generate more clubhead speed to get my lob wedge through the grass. Start by taking a much wider stance. This will allow me to have more stability, and swing this club faster. Secondly, with this grass behind the ball, I’m going to pick my club up so I can hit down on the ball and not get the club snagged in the grass behind it. 

So, remember: Take a wider stance, make a more elevated backswing, and you might be able to get the ball back in play, and have a putt for par.”

PGA Professional and Lead Coach, Learn with the Pro's