Kolf: Golf played on ice. And yes, we're going to play it.

A friend sent me this pen and ink drawing from circa 1620 by the artist Hendrick Avercamp and purchased by King George III. It’s kolf. Golf on ice.


Which, of course, is amazing.


There’s actually some scholarship on the rise and fall of the kolf (and it’s sister sport, colf), which was apparently (and stupidly) replaced by billiards as the preferred winter sport.

Living in New England, our golf season typically ends in November, and it doesn’t start up again until March or April. For three to five long months, we dream about golf but are unable to play.

Enter kolf.

I sent these images to my golfing buddies, one of whom happens to live on a pond that’s perfect for kolf. He’s also an obsessive compulsive perfectionist, and he is already planning the course, which will include holes sunken into the ice and bunkers made from snow.

It will be cold, and it will be frustrating, but it will also be amazing.

I can’t wait for the pond to freeze.