What’s A Snowman In Golf?

The word snowman isn’t just for using in below freezing temperatures, it’s a vintage golf euphemism used for a certain number on the scorecard that happens to be extremely poor.

A Snowman In Golf: Definition

How many strokes is a snowman in golf?

A snowman is a nickname that golfers use for the number eight on a scorecard. The “8” shows resemblance to a snowman.

Golf buddies use the word to each other in different ways. It can be in a sentence to jab them and joke around or out of pity. For example, you might hear someone tell their playing partner or opponent: “Uh oh, you better make this putt or you’re going to get a snowman.”

📋 Keep in mind: If you wrote an eight down for a hole, you’re looking at a triple bogey at best for a par 5, a quadruple bogey on a par 4 and an atrocious quintuple on a par 3. 

Famous Examples Of Snowmans In Golf

A recent instance of a memorable snowman occurring in a professional tournament was at the 2019 Open Championship at Royal Portrush, when Rory McIlroy recorded an eight on the opening hole of the tournament. 

The Northern Irishman smashed his first tee shot into a woman and cracked her phone. He then retee’d and missed badly to the left. He ultimately missed a six-footer for triple resulting in the abominable snowman. 

In the following video at the 2018 Players’ Championship, Jordan Spieth found himself with a snowman on his card after quadrupling the par-4 18th.

Our last example of a snowman showcases when Danny Lee found the water a couple of times and carded a quintuple bogey at the 17th hole at the American Express.

What’s A Blizzard In Golf?

If you end up writing down two or more eights on your scorecard during a round, then you’ve found yourself lost in a blizzard. Another way the word blizzard is used is when a player shoots an 88. 

One dreaded example of a blizzard or a double snowman, equivalent to two eights summed up together on a single hole, was when Kevin Na carded a 16 on the par-4 9th hole at TPC San Antonio during the Valero Texas Open. 

He went on to shoot an 8-over 80 for the round despite the more than massive number. Had he limited the damage, he likely would have recorded an under-par round.

📢 Need To Know: A different slang word that can be used is “hangman” in the scenario in which someone makes a nine on a certain hole.


What are the snowman rules in golf?

The “snowman” is a slang term used in golf for a score of eight on a single hole in golf. There are no official rules or penalties associated with this term, but it is generally considered an undesirable score as it means the player took twice as many strokes as par on the hole.

What is a turkey in golf?

In golf, a “turkey” is a slang term used to describe when a player scores three consecutive birdies (a score of one stroke under par on a hole) during a round of golf.

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Lawrence Smelser has been part of the Golfible writing staff since 2019 and is a freelance golf journalist. Smelser has covered the PGA Tour including the U.S. Masters with Augusta.com. He holds a journalism Bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M and a Master’s journalism degree from the University of North Texas. Learn more about our team at Golfible on our About Us page.

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