Should bunker rakes be placed inside or outside of sand traps?
Golf Culture

Should bunker rakes be placed inside or outside of sand traps?

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There's this age-old argument in golf over where rakes should be placed in relationship to bunkers: Should bunker rakes be placed in or out of sand traps?

The argument for placing rakes inside sand traps is pretty clear. If you put the rake inside the bunker, then a golf ball has almost no chance of hitting a rake and ending up outside of a bunker. Isn't that kind of the point? If the ball goes in the bunker, it should typically stay in there, forcing the golfer to hit from the sand. However, a rake in the bunker can also mean that the ball could be stopped from going to a worse position in the sand trap. That's not ideal. A bunker is a hazard, after all, and you can't ground your club in it.

The argument for placing bunker rakes outside sand traps is also clear: Having the rake outside the bunker means that a ball can go any which way once it's in the sand trap. It could roll out. It could go to the worst spot imaginable. And the odds of a ball hitting the rake, properly placed on the side opposite where balls would typically go in it, are pretty low.



Keeping the rake outside the bunker is also good for actually raking the sand. A player is able to easily grab a rake before entering the trap, meaning they can also easily rake their way out. If the rake is already in the bunker and a distance away from the player's ball, then that creates additional raking work that a player is often too lazy to complete.

So, what's the proper place for a bunker rake? It's out of the bunker, on the side or outline of the sand trap where a ball typically would not catch it on the fly.

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