To a passerby or to a casual bowler, Green #1 at Jefferson Park Lawn Bowling Club looks perfectly flat. But to the Greens Chair and the donut crew (Richard Krueger, Doug Bradley, Becky Barnett, Its Nishikawa & Chris Davis), it looks like this:
The edges of the green fall off as into an abyss. The corners are sloping down at an angle akin to a water slide. And there are annoying ridges that shoot up like the Cascades.
Of course, when measured down to the nearest 1/8 of an inch … a mole hill IS a mountain.
The above graphic was made from measuring over 1800 points on the green with a surveyor's transit and then plotting them into a graph (you don't even want to know how long that took).
The result is a 3-D chart that illustrates just why we can only set up 7 rinks instead of 8. The aim of a great lawn bowling green is to have the measurement from corner to corner not vary by more than 1/8 of an inch. The middle of our green is pretty darn good. But from corner to corner, Green #1 varies by over 2 1/2 inches!!!
What does that mean? It means we have a lot of work to do. But now that we have detailed information, eaten a lot of donuts and drank a lot of coffee, we've begun to form a plan.
I'll talk more about that later …