What are the ways to find a lost golf ball?
The new three piece ultra-premium golf balls now cost about $50 a dozen. Many older golfers are playing with a set of golf clubs that cost roughly that same amount of money. Fortunately, there are ways of securing a variety of golf balls at a price far less than $50 for a dozen. Finding them while playing requires a bit of attention but minimal capital outlay.
Invest in a good golf ball retriever. A good retriever should be sturdy, easy to use, expandable and light. There are many types and it may be worthwhile to check with one of your golfing buddies who has about 600 balls in his trunk.
Learn to pick out spots where balls are typically lost; along fences where grass grows in length, in deep grass to the right of fairways (since most golfers are right handed and the most common error is a slice), in landing areas on holes with blind tee shots and in water hazards.
Walk quickly between shots so that you will have more time to search as you move from shot to shot. Holding up the entire field of golfers behind you while you look is an unacceptable violation of golf etiquette. It's also liable to get you tossed off a course.
Don't walk by a water hazard without looking as you walk by. Streams are better sources of balls because their width can usually be covered with a retriever. Early morning rounds also usually produce more balls.
Try to play following a large tournament. Often, balls will be handed out at tournaments and because of time limitations and the fact that the balls were "free" many golfers will not look for them for any length of time.
Walk in the rough as you move from one shot to the next. Look as you walk. Develop the ability to scan the rough without walking into trees.
Follow the cardinal rule of finding balls--a golf ball is not lost until it stops rolling.