Record-breaking temperatures allow Dorchester, Ont. golf course to open – London

Mild weather and even milder temperatures have allowed Pine Knot Golf and Country Club in Dorchester, Ont., to open their course.

More than 190 golfers booked tee-times Friday, taking advantage of the record-breaking weather.

“It’s felt like spring all week out here,” says Dean Gochan, director of golf at Pine Knot.

“Everybody’s in such a good mood, coming out and playing golf. We’ve been very busy every day.”

Temperatures peaked Friday at 14 C, breaking the previous record for London set only a year ago at 9.9 C.

Gochan says that the links would usually be closed at this time of year, but warm spells like this are happening more and more often.

“We get these weeks here and there in January, February, March,” he said. “As long as there’s no snow on the ground, we’ll keep open, but we’ll definitely have a slowdown after tomorrow.”

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Looking around the golf course, it’d be easy to forget that spring is still a month away if it weren’t for leftover snow piles and frozen ponds dotted with golf balls.

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Golfers came from all over southwestern Ontario, with one player driving nearly two hours to get to Pine Knot.

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“It’s 10 C and a slight wind, the sun peaks in and out, it’s great winter golf,” says Tony Pileggi, one of the golfers taking advantage of the weather.

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“You certainly wouldn’t want this temperature in June, but we’ll take it for February.”

Pileggi adds that golfing in February adds a little complexity to the game, limiting how far the ball flies in comparison to the summer months.

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Global News meteorologist Ross Hull says temperatures overall have been well above average for February on the whole.

“Our normal or average high would be minus two as a daytime high and then close to minus 10 as an overnight low,” says Hull.

“We’ve been well above average throughout this month, just looking at some of the snow totals, we’ve had little snow even in December and January.”

Hull says the mild temperatures are the result of a strong El Nino which has led to warmer weather patterns, but a move to a more neutral pattern is coming in the next few months.

“We certainly will be closer to normal through the rest of February. “I think it’s a pretty safe bet to say this is the warmest we are going to be; it won’t be an early spring. I know as soon as March comes around, people are expecting to be out in shorts and T shirts but that’s often not the case.”

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The next few days in London will see temperatures start to drop back down to normal, with potential rain over the weekend.

Snow and freezing temperatures are expected to make a return at the end of next week.

Click to play video: 'Toronto beats previous daily record for warmest Feb. 9 in 86 years'

Toronto beats previous daily record for warmest Feb. 9 in 86 years

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