Tip From the Archives
You are playing on a new golf course with waste bunkers and do not know what they are.
Waste Bunkers are also known as Waste Areas or Transition Bunkers. These are locations on the course that are not considered sand bunkers but are often sandy or a crusty dirt surface.
Telling the difference between a sand bunker and a waste bunker should not be difficult to do on most courses. Sand bunkers are maintained, raked, and clean. Waste bunkers are not maintained might just look like a large dirt hole. If you are ever in doubt on a course known to have waste areas, look for rakes or rake marks to help you determine if it is a sand bunker. Why is knowing the difference between the two bunkers types important? The reason is that you can ground your club and take a practice swing in the waste bunker but you cannot do this in a sand bunker. One golf tip that would be handy to use in the waste bunker is to hit the ball first instead of into the sand. Getting clean contact with the ball can help take some of the unpredictability out of the shot. Otherwise you might be startled by how hard or crusty the sand is under your ball and hit it poorly.