This may be one of “them Texas tall tales” ya’ll have have heard about, but it began Saturday when I was burning the first of two pretty good-sized burn piles that have accumulated on the property.  Remember our “limbing-up” discussion?

Elaine had successfully kept me away from burning until some “ground nesters” were done with this year’s broods, but when I lit off pile #2 Sunday morning and saw a rat I figured it was time to tear up my environmentalist ticket and get back to what Texans call “rat killing” in earnest.

It was while I watched my fire – and played with the flame thrower – that the most incredible multi-revenue stream concept yet came into focus…


So there I was watching the crackling of the fires…

…and I got to thinking thinking “You know, this place looks like a State Park…almost a golf course…”

By God, there was a peel of thunder off in the distance as the idea came in clearly.

Sure, it had been around before, but never this seriously.  Besides, I didn’t have a good grounds man and I didn’t have the personal bandwidth before.  But I cast my eyes off to the west….and the dream continued to firm up…

From here, in the crook of the “L” of the property, I could hit a 1,300 foot 433-yard tee shot to the back property line in the northwest corner up in those trees somewhere…,

“The pin” for this hole would be straight up the middle there and we’d have to scalp down a few sides of trees, but yes, the vision was coming into view…

I was inventing UNFG – Ultra-Narrow Fairway Golf!  Any idiot can play a half-mile wide fairway.  This would be different. 100-150 feet mainly.  Narrower in places.

Next, I wandered over to the rifle and pistol range (due for a haircut /to be cleaned up), but the backstop logs are visible in mid-picture.  What would happen if I took that out and put in a 150 -200 yard hole here?

More trees would be trimmed behind, of course…

Well, next thing you know I was working out all the details in my head.

First, we would have to get the fence fixed in a few places – and put up 400 feet of 9-strand barbed (wire fence) on the back side.  Exercise seems to er “stimulate” stoved-up city slickers, so there would be a Port-a-potty rental, too….

The rest of the day was spent working and wondering:  How many acres is a typical golf course?

Turns out the average course is about 74 acres worth.  That’s for a regulation 18…but that’s with those sloppy-wide fairways.  What we’re talking here is high-compression golf.

I might be able to squeeze a pretty good 9-holes out (which could be played once clockwise and once counter-clockwise for 18).

Or, I could talk to Oilman2 who’s place is about 30-miles south of here.  Not uncommon for people to drive a cart from the front 9 to the back 9.

Seeing as this IS Texas, after all, where else would you have a 35-mile drive from the front 9 to the back 9? Hmmm…

The idea has me riveted.

Right now, we have the place designated as a tree farm.  But does the US Dept. of Agriculture have rules about mixed-use with golf?  None that I’ve ever heard of.

Then there’s our delicious Ag Exemption for trees.  No question is I ran a dozen head of cattle on the property, there would be continued tax benefits.  And by planting the fairways just so, the cattle which would run the place during the week would be keeping the fairways “moved” and “fertilized.”

Regulations like:

#5: Balls landing on (or in) cow pies must be played from where they land.

The grand design of the new Cottonmouth Creek Country Club (next to Uretopia Lodge & Studio) was becoming clear in my head.

It wouldn’t be that expensive to do.  We are cleaning up to run a couple of head of beef anyway (makes the place more attractive to sell and eventually will taste great).

Only problem I could think of was the risk of hitting a cow with a golf ball.  Not the normal kind of vet bill, there.

Then suddenly the inventor appeared!

Why not train the cows from the calf stage to come to a penned area and feed them grain and alfalfa when there are paying customers on the course?

No doubt this would be one of the “roughest” golf clubs in the country.  The rough would be just that:  dangerous and nearly impassable.

Let’s seep who can chip out of an 8-foot deep ravine, huh?  Off to the shop next to design a 76-degree ravine wedge.

What’s the go-ahead plan?

So many details that I decided to write them down somewhere and here was as good as anywhere.

  1.  IF Elaine and I sell this place, a solar powered internet office in the woods with a recording studio and is stocked for preppers sounds pretty good to us, but it’s really wide appeal, know what I mean?  So what if Nugent’s supposedly got a hand in place up the road from us? I think having a golf course, run half a dozen head of beef, AND having your own project studio, well sir, THAT would be awfully damn fine.
  2. Next step will be laying out the course with our grounds man – and since he’s a recent A&M grad he’s knows EVERYTHING that we’d need to make a really nice course.  Might help the trees grow, too.  (We might have to teach him golf.)
  3. We could modify the rules to fit the natural limits of the land (and trees).  Maybe nothing bigger than a 4-iron…and the more dog-legs and “snake hazards…”  Yeah, this is feeling good ain’t it?
  4. An honorary membership for each round played.  A certificate (*suitable for framing or shredding), one can of Bud at the end of it, but access to the BBQ grill if you BYOB (bring your own beef).
  5. I haven’t been out playing golf for a while,   But this was really a simple matter to track down.  The Wildcat course – a short 9 in Palestine, run by the high school kids from what I hear, is $22 for 9 holes and that includes the cart.  The more upscale Pine Dunes Country Club and Resort is $79 on weekends, but they include a tiding cart.  They are also closer, as the crow flies, from here.  But $20 bucks with a cart sounds about right. Maybe $2 bucks for Port-a-Potty use.
  6. We already figured on a Port-a-Potty and each team going out on the course would be issued a 2-way radio for emergencies.  See a snake?  I’ll do the shooting.  Run out of beer?  Let me get the chaplain on the horn for you… Need to rent the Port-a-Potty key?

Yes, this may be one of my zaniest ideas EVER.  But as long as we keep it on the low beam (and report all the income and expenses) would this be considered “side income for a tree farm” or would the tree income be “incidental golf course income?”

A word with my consigliere is in order.  Maybe a single-purpose LLc that rents from the tree farm…hmmm…

A cross between putt-putt, an executive short course, and a couple of long-ass driving holes with ultra-narrow fairways, hazards like ravines, snakes, and power lines, ought to make Cotton Mouth Creek the most exciting new golf course in the country.

And then we will launch the C.G.A. – the Cattleman’s Golf Association – so all kinds of additional revenue (and tourism) will flow into Texas.  Putt-putt in a feed lot?  Sure, why not?

Think of it as the Outback Troon with the Chief Buffon.

And at the annual awards luncheon?  (Ball Park franks and a Bud Light):  The player of the year will wear a camo jacket.  This is a practical club.

Rule #28: We will be closed during the East Texas white-tail deer season.  See our Hunting Club site for membership details.

Write for reservations, or when you get rich,