Molly McMulligan’s Fab 5

Get official! Here are 5 ways to establish and maintain a USGA Handicap® in Colorado

When you run across Jennifer Kupcho or Hale Irwin on a Colorado golf course, you can challenge them to a competition. All you need, besides some nerve, is an official Handicap Index®. Then download the GHIN® mobile app, and voila, they know exactly how many strokes to give you. 

Although, professionals, they don’t have indexes anymore. It’s really a tool for us amateurs so that we can have a fair game against anyone, anywhere. Here are five ways to get started on that.  

  1. Go big! Golf memberships at private clubs in the area come with CGA membership, which includes an official Handicap Index®. It’s a seller’s market right now, which means initiation fees vary and some clubs come with waiting lists or require an invitation to join. At other clubs, your best bet is endorsement from a current member. Oh, and patience. 
  1. Go public! For as little as $100 a year, maybe up to $300, you can join a 9- or 18-hole club at the nearest municipal golf course and have monthly or weekly contests throughout the season while establishing an official Handicap Index®. See our article in the CGA Monthly for ideas on joining up. 
  1. Go alternatively! There are traveling clubs around the state, including ROMEO in Fort Collins (Retired Old Men Equal Opportunity), Front Range Golf Club and LPGA Amateurs. 
  1. Skip the middleman! Visit or CLICK HERE and opt for a CGA regional eClub membership at $59.95. This type of membership allows you to belong to a region rather than a golf course, and benefits include receiving early access to Member Play Day opportunities. 
  1. Go maverick! You and nine of your friends can start your own, USGA Certified Club, for just an annual $75 club fee plus $35 per active member. You’ll need to know enough about handicapping to pass a basic assessment, and establish a Handicap Committee for your club, and you’re good to go. 

Obviously these five options range widely in cost and commitment. But there’s one more thing you should know: If you’re going to challenge Jennifer Kupcho or Hale Irwin, BEG them for a few extra strokes!