A large chunk of Hope Golf Club is under water, and it may take months before the course is rebuilt and ready for use.
An aerial photo making the rounds Friday morning shows several holes completely submerged. The clubhouse and top area of the nine-hole layout are dry, but Mike Carrier said it will be a while before they can even make a full assessment of the damage.
“We had a dike at No. 8 that breached, and once that happened water just flowed across,” he said. “It’ll continue to do that until the Coquihalla River goes way down.”
When the water eventually disappears, Carrier expects to find tons of trees, rocks and other debris.
“It’ll be a massive cleanup, and there are a few holes that are badly damaged,” he said. “Some of it will be recoverable, but it will take time to see what’s available to rebuild the course. It might look a little different, but I think we’ll be able to salvage most of it.
“I jsut think we’re all in a little bit in shock.”
From the business side, Hope Golf Club’s Bonnie Cianfagna said this is devastating, and comes after four years of hard work to get the course in the stellar shape it was pre-flooding.
“I’m very concerned because we just finished our early-bird drive, and we had 47 members who purchased their 2022 membership early, and if the course isn’t playable next year we’ll definitely refund that money. And that’s a lot of money,” Cianfagna said. “We do have flood insurance on parts of the course, and we’re optimistic. We know the town’s always been big supporters of us and they’ll help us out this time.”
On the silver-linings side, a trucking company has been renting space in the clubhouse, bringing in some revenue.
And Cianfagna said this week’s events have provided an opportunity for the Hope Golf Club to help the community. A landing pad was set up near the clubhouse, with helicopters bringing supplies in and carrying evacuees out.
“We opened up our doors to everybody,” Cianfagna said. “We had a couple of our members making chilli and hot dogs and coffee. We also set up little bedrooms in our locker rooms in case someone needed a place to crash. There were a couple people sleeping in their cars and we thought we could at least make them a bedroom indoors.
“It was really nice to see how everyone pulled together and talk about a lot of appreciative people. They’d been away from their homes for three or four days and they were very thankful.”