The Loop

Since we have to get off Earth soon, which of humanity's new planets will be best suited for golf?

June 24, 2017
Solar System montage of Voyager images.

Science & Society Picture Library

Theoretical physicist and humanity-terrifier Stephen Hawking announced last week that Earth is a doomed cesspool of unstoppable ravage and decay, which is something we obviously all knew already. But the renowned scientist was good enough to put a number on his doomsday prophecy, reporting that we humans need to locate, travel to and colonize another planet within about 500 years, give or take, depending on traffic.

New Space Exploration Initiative "Breakthrough Starshot" Announcement

Jemal Countess

For the most part, this is fine — it’s getting pretty hot around here anyway, and those of us here in Indiana can fund the trip with the sale of our beachfront homes. But while “scientists” and “theoretical physicists” and “those charged with deciding who will travel to this new planet, which should include plenty of tallish gray-haired Slovaks, just saying” debate which planet we should lay waste to next, we here at The Loop have different criteria: Where the hell are we going to play golf? Before we rush into any rash planet-colonizing decisions, let’s break down our potential new homes in the solar system:


Pros: Murderously omnipresent sun means 24-7-365 tee times; jagged landscape would offer challenging course designs; low gravity allows players to start strong with drives of 6,000 miles.

Cons: Shortly before teeing off, all players would burst immediately into flame.


Pros: It’s, like, right over there; would be a short pop back to Earth if anyone forgot their keys or needed to attend his daughter’s graduation; humidity would make it feel not too different from Florida.

Cons: Weather is mostly cloudy; also those clouds are toxic and would instantly suffocate all sentient life; last thing we need is to move to a new planet and make it resemble Florida.

Phoenix Mars Lander Arrives On Mars



Pros: Surface already pockmarked with convenient holes; Mars has salt so margaritas are covered; Damon left us all those potatoes.

Cons: Have to play around the Illudium G-36 Explosive Space Modulator; the aliens behind the Face on Mars might charge green fees; planet needs women.


Pros: Place is huge — you could fit 5 million Trump courses on it and most of us would still never have to actually see any of them.

Cons: Does not actually have a surface, which is a problem when you set your ball on the tee and it plunges into an endless soup of poison gas.


Pros: Coolest sky views; planet is wider around the middle, like most of us; let’s be honest, this is the coolest planet if it weren’t for its lethally uninhabitable nature.

Cons: Water hazards are basically deadly lakes of methane; Saturn spins faster than Earth, meaning players might be occasionally flung helplessly into the sky; decent chance of Tiger crashing his SUV into a ring.


Pros: Everyone likes Uranus; plenty of room to store your bags on Uranus; fairways are nice and round on Uranus.

Cons: It’s pretty hard to play golf on Uranus; there aren’t enough holes on Uranus; difficult to just tap it in on Uranus; no, we are not above any of this.


Pros: None of us have ever seen an all-blue golf course.

Cons: Neptune is cold, dark and endlessly hammered by supersonic winds, which will make chipping a bitch.


Pros: Little need for sunscreen; probably not real crowded; beer stays ice-cold for all 18 holes and also the rest of your life.

Cons: Neil DeGrasse Tyson running around shouting about how “This isn’t even a planet.”

Any of the Seven Planets Orbiting TRAPPIST-1

Pros: The discovery of seven potentially habitable Earth-sized planets around the dwarf star known as TRAPPIST-1 truly takes one’s breath away, once again revealing the true size and scope of our majestic, infinite universe and the endless possibilities that continue to dwell within it.

Cons: Might get there and discover planets are run by a guy who drives golf carts on the green.