John Berry, General Manager of the Cobb, Calif., golf course wrote a firsthand account of the fire’s effect on the property, which left the pro shop and Club Room in “rubble and ashes.” The golf course owner plans to rebuild and reopen the property.
Wildfires in the West are having an impact on golf courses, and the fire that consumed part of Adams Springs Golf Course in Cobb, Calif., received a firsthand account by General Manager John Berry that was published in the local newspaper, the Record-Bee.
On September 12, the golf course hosted the Clearlake Masonic Lodge Scholarship Tournament. After it concluded, Berry spotted an unusual sight while checking on a leak from the water system on the 5th fairway.
“Suddenly our attention was drawn to the nearby sky to the west,” Berry wrote. “An enormous cloud of black smoke was mushrooming out of control. From the start, it definitely looked like a wildfire, and in mere seconds it seemed to be growing larger and getting closer. I immediately drove back to the clubhouse, interrupted the awards ceremony, and suggested that we prepare to make an immediate decision regarding the evacuation of the golf course. I then returned to the golf course to tell the lone twosome, Danielle and Brian, that they needed to depart. Within 20 minutes, most of the contestants had departed, the pro shop staff was gone, and we had shut down the cart barn, locked up the pro shop, and hurriedly left.”
Later that night, Berry received a call from a golfer, saying he observed the pro shop and Club Room burning down, and “there was nothing left but rubble and ashes.”
“The houses alongside the 1st and 9th fairways were on fire. Those fighting the fire had evacuated to Adams Springs’ 6th fairway for safety sake. Hundreds of homes were destroyed, more than 10,000 people were displaced, and lives were lost. Although most of us have not been able to return to the fire zone at this point, the description I’ve heard multiple times to describe those impacted areas is ‘armageddon,’” Berry wrote.
However, Berry is optimistic that the community and golf course will bounce back.
“Rebuilding and improving upon all that the fire has destroyed will certainly occur. Eddie Mullins, the longtime owner of Adams Springs, is also determined to reopen Adams Springs and rebuild the pro shop and the Club Room. Mullins is of the mindset that while golf is nowhere near a priority at this time of crisis, the two nine hole courses on the mountain can not only afford a recreational outlet to those residents of the area, but can also set a positive tone for a renewed lifestyle on Cobb Mountain. The phoenix that is Lake County strong will rise from these ashes.”