- Boundary (out of bounds) – white stakes
- Water hazard – yellow stakes
- Lateral water hazard – red stakes
- Ground under repair – blue or black stakes (although GUR is usually denoted by a white line painted around the area)
- Environmentally sensitive areas (ESA) defined as a water hazard – yellow stakes with green tops (Decision 33-8/41)
- ESA defined as a lateral water hazard– red stakes with green tops
- ESA defined as ground under repair– blue stakes with green tops
- Shrub / flower beds – e.g. red and white stakes
By Definition, stakes or lines defining hazards are in the hazards. Stakes are obstructions. Therefore, if they are movable, players are entitled to relief without penalty from them under Rule 24-1. If they are immovable, relief without penalty is provided under Rule 24-2 when the ball lies outside the hazard. However, if the ball is in the hazard, the player is not entitled to immovable obstruction relief. Accordingly, it is recommended that stakes marking hazards are movable.And now to my most important ‘rule’ relating to stakes. If you do move them away from your lie, stance, area of intended swing or line of play, please remember to replace them after you have made your stroke, and also remind others that you are playing with to do so. Not correctly replacing stakes is obviously discourteous to other players and can lead to frustration and anger on the course.
* This is a link to the R&A publication, ‘Guidance on Running a Competition’ published by R&A.
I am expecting to have my new book, cleverly titled, ‘999 More Questions on the Rules of Golf’, available from my Rhodes Rules School web site very soon. It will also be available as a paperback, though this version is considerably more expensive than the eBook, due to the full colour print required for the photos and diagrams. In the meantime, you can email me at rules at barry rhodes dot com and I will advise you how you can obtain the .pdf and .mobi files directly from me.
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