Dateline May 15, 2011 Prince George to Farmington Fairways, BC

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John and Melanie Rigspey (Owners of Farmington Fairways)

Another adventurous day begins leaving the Casino in Prince George where we spent the nigh in the parking lot after a few hours at the computerized roulette table. $40 lost, but a few hours of fun! The drive began uneventfully until we reached Pine Pass; the lowest pass in the Canadian Rockies at about 3,000 feet. The sign warned us to be ready for SUDDEN WEATHER CHANGES. How bad could it be, the temp was 48 degrees. As we drove up, the temp began to drop, at around 36 degrees, the freezing rain became snow!! Wonderful, tight curves, big drop offs and snow! We cautiously drove the pass and getting to the east side the weather turned better and we continued the drive towards Dawson Creek and Mile Marker “0”.

There was an opportunity when we arrived at Chetwynd and decided to take a loop north to Hudson’s Hope and on into Fort Saint John at Mile Marker 48 on the Alaska Highway. We started looking for an RV site as we traveled south, they were either not open or flooded. Getting out the Mile Post (the bible for traveling in the NORTH) it mentioned an RV park that also had a golf course, a few minutes later it was on the left side of the road. Perfect!! So we decided to make it the stop for the night.

We have no idea how many RV parks also have golf courses, I am sure not many. This was an extraordinary experience. The RV portion was good with all the amenities you would expect, like clean showers and FREE! But this post is about golf and the people of Dawson Creek that made our three day stay the best of the trip so far. We walked into the pro shop, reception area and restaurant and were greeted by Melanie Rigsby. She and her husband John are the owners and managers.

A few of the Ladies of Farmington Fairways

There were a bunch of women getting drinks for Ladies Golf Night and all were having a great time. Melanie told us to pick whatever spot we wanted and just let her know which one.

We set up the Roadtrek and fixed dinner settling in for the night. The next morning we ran out to Dawson Creek for some supplies with the idea of returning for a round of golf. We checked in to the pro shop and met Melanie’s husband John. We carried our clubs and played the nine hole course (3,100 yards). It was a great track, the layout would stand up to any in the lower 48. The course had only been open for a week because of the longer than normal winter and was in surprisingly good shape. Upon our return to the pro shop we had a beer and started a conversation with John. He told us his background and how he and Melanie ended up purchasing the course. John had been a junior member and played the course for years. He had a great interest in golf course management and went to the college for agronomy. He then became greens super for the course followed by general manager. The elderly gentleman that owned the course entertained an offer from John and he and Melanie bought it 3 years ago.

John suggested that we may want to play in their opening day scramble on Saturday, which was going to begin at 2:00 followed by a dinner and then a Horse Race/ We learned the rules later about that game, fun!

Saturday’s weather was clear, sunny and 70 degrees out. We had a potential problem with the RV and John recommended Boes Trailer Sales and Service in town. We drove there and met Jerry and Terry the owners. Over coffee we discussed the problems and they scheduled a mechanic for us on Monday afternoon in case we had to have the work done. We mention this because they personified the people of the area. Friendly, courteous and ready to help. We went into town and visited the info center, each community seems to have one. The women and interns were just wonderful and helpful, which had been our experience throughout British Columbia.

Arriving back at the golf course we went into the pro shop to get ready for the scramble. John and Melanie had us partner with them for the event. We were introduced to the various members before heading out. They were all so pleased that we were joining them for their opening event of the year. We started on one and continued to play the nine holes, ended up 2 under for the event and won; had a great time. John made sure that there were plenty of beers for the round and we are sure it helped loosen us up. Back in the restaurant they served dinner and the drinking continued. We had a chance to get to know the members better. They treated us like we were part of the group. On to the Horse Race.

Horse Race Organizer..

John finished up with the raffle prizes and winners awards and announced the Horse Race, $5 per player. We ended up with 9 two men teams and headed out o the first tee. The teams teed off in order, with continual heckling going on from all the other players. All nine teams teed off and then proceeded to the next shot. The format was alternative shot. To survive the first hole, you had to have at least a double bogy. One team out and on to the second hole where you had to make at least a bogy. Only two teams survived the second hole and then on to the third where you had to make a par. Janice, playing with Clayton won the event. It was back into the restaurant for more drinks, jokes and fun. At 10:00, we excused ourselves, thanking all for the wonderful time.

Since we are coming back down the Alaska Highway in mid July we told everyone we would like to come back. We are looking forward to playing more golf with John, Melanie and the rest of their friends. Three wonderful days with just fun and nice folks.