Steamboat Springs Haley Morris isn't sure why girls dodge golf.
She started in 2000, stopped for a couple of years but started back up this summer because she had two months off from figure skating.
"It's fun," she said while on the 13th hole at Haymaker Friday morning. "It's the only sport I can be good at besides figure skating."
Haymaker's Playing Camp wrapped up Friday morning. Of the roughly 90 participants in the July 15-19 clinic, about 10 were girls. Director Jason Deigert said he wants more girls involved.
Linda Sobeck was an instructor for the 6-9 age division, and she believes more girls need to participate as well.
She started golfing at 8 but then stopped for more than a decade before picking it back up seriously after she turned 30.
"It just moved a little too slow for me at the time," she said.
LPGA pros such as Annika Sorenstam and Karrie Webb are slowly becoming household names with the increased exposure the entire sport is receiving because of the global appeal of Tiger Woods.
"The world is open for little girls to golf," Sobeck said.
Samantha Stamp is 6 and just started golfing this year. Her golf bag comes up to around her chin and her favorite aspect of the game is "teeing off." In Thursday's round, she hit some balls straight, some not so straight and sometimes she missed the ball altogether, just like the trio of boys she played with.
But she had a blast and was pretty excited her mom signed her up for playing camp.
Deigert said getting kids involved in golf at a young age is great for the future of the sport and the individual children's games. Utilizing the actual course during a camp enables the young golfers to apply the knowledge they have with the advice from the instructors in the real setting.
The golfers ages 6 to 9 were closely monitored, receiving almost constant encouragement and support on Tuesday and Thursday. The kids ages 10-18 were given more freedom on Monday, Wednesday and Friday largely because they have a better grasp of the sport.
And it showed itself in funny fashion.
By the second hole on Thursday, golf instructor Dave Keesee had turned into full-time caddie, toting around the bags of his foursome, Stamp, Erik Sobeck, 6, Jake Teut, 7, and Scott Witcher, 7, when they forgot to pick them up as they ran ahead to their balls after each shot.
The kids left their borrowed ball markers on the previous holes' greens, so Keesee dug into his pockets and fetched out a fresh handful of dimes. They were thirsty, they were hungry, and they wanted to hit first even if they were the closest to the hole, but they remembered to fix ball marks and not to set their clubs when they had them on the green, which are two important etiquette rules in golf.
Linda Sobeck worked with Abby Kissane, 7, on Thursday as a female-female tandem. Following the round, she announced to all the young golfers Kissane improved "110 percent" since Tuesday. Kissane thought the same thing.
"I did hit better," she said with a smile. "I hit it lots father and straighter, too. It's fun. I like to play golf."
And that is exactly what junior golf is about for both boys and girls.