Friday Night Update
So far the weather has done its part to make the 2nd Greenbrier Classic sparkle. Hot sunshine has treated golf fans and players all week long.
But a change is in the offing for the weekend as a weak cool front is set to cross West Virginia on Saturday. The tropical environment ahead of the front has sponsored some gutter gushing downpours with vivid lightning streaks in Central Ohio on Friday evening.
No reason to think that same fate will by-pass the Greenbrier Valley on Saturday. Still until cells show up on radar, it is too difficult to say with any confidence when and how hard it will rain in White Sulphur Springs.
So plan on a thunder delay for "moving day" as the pros position themselves for Sunday's final round. Highs in the mid 80s before or in between showers will feel muggy.
Sunday's weather should improve though I could easily see showers lingering on Sunday morning with fog capping the mountains through mid morning. Highs in the 80s will feel more cozy than Saturday.
One thing for sure,assuming the rains come, they will soften the greens so look for scores to average several shots lower on Sunday if not Saturday too depending on timing of the rain.
Greenbrier Weather to Sparkle
Talk about 10 star weather! The forecast for most of this week looks to be perfect for the playing of the Greenbrier Classic at White Sulphur Springs. So Mother Nature is about to join Jim Justice in welcoming many of world’s best golfers to West by God Virginia!
This Monday evening a third round of soaking showers and thunderstorms is marching steadily through the central mountains of West Virginia and toward the Greenbrier Valley.
Once these cells pass, the floodgates will open for a nice 3-4 day dry spell at America’s Showplace. That drying sunshine (and gusty north wind on Tuesday) should help to speed up the Old White greens by the first tee shot on Thursday. The pros may lament the faster greens, but golf purists will applaud. You see last year’s final round 59 score posted by champion Stuart Appleby did not sit right with the golfing establishment.
This year, the greens will be moderately slow on Tuesday thanks to the Monday rains, then dry out and speed up by Wednesday and Thursday.
Now early Tuesday morning travelers will encounter wisps of dense fog traveling out of Charleston south along the turnpike. Given the high humidity in the air, I would think fog could linger as late as 9 or even 10 AM from Shoemaker Square in Beckley to the Grandview State Park along I-64 into Greenbrier County.
After that, the strong July sun will go to work and evaporate the fog as the second practice round of the Classic gets underway.
Highs will head for 90 here in the Ohio, Big Sandy and Kanawha Valleys while inching toward 85 hot degrees at White Sulphur Springs. A day to day increase in temperature by a degree or two will place late week highs near the sticky 90 degree mark even in the majestic Allegheny mountains that guard the Greenbrier.
If you are planning to take in the action Tuesday through Friday, the one constant will be the high sunburn index. Just because the temperature is 5-7 degrees lower in the mountains does not mean the sun is any less intense. So load up with an SPF 30 before walking the lush Old White fairways.
By the way, as you drive through Greenbrier County you will see bails of hay neatly rolled up in the pasturelands with cows grazing on the winding hillsides. After all, cattle and hay farming are cash crops in this secluded little corner of the Mountain State. Chances are real good hay farmers will be taking advantage of the dry weather to cut what grass has not been harvested.
As for other recreation in the Allegheny Mountains, the Greenbrier Valley is known for top notch smallmouth bass and rainbow trout fishing. In late fall, the racks on trophy bucks can easily go 10 points. No wonder venerable golf pro emeritus Sam Snead, who was known to say
“The only reason I played golf was so that I could afford to go hunting and fishing.”
Is there any wonder why the Greenbrier Valley around Lewisburg has been dubbed one of the best places to live in the USA?