Friday, April 24, 2015
Work is sending me to south Florida in November! I have added a round at Trump National Doral (Blue Monster) and an undecided round at one of the other three courses. In addition, I have a couple of rounds scheduled at Heron Bay Golf Club. The Blue Monster course is rated the #20 public course in the U.S.
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
I played Longaberger GC a year and a half before I started this blog. Since I wasn't writing this blog yet, I didn't take many photos but I ddi try to write a blog entry. I now have an opportunity to go back in June to play the course again and should have a much better blog write up on the course! It is ranked the #63 public course in the U.S.
December 1, 2014
One thing I love about Bandon Dunes, and one of the numerous reasons it is my favorite golf resort anywhere in the world, is that the four courses are uniquely different in styles and layouts. All four courses are world class and hold their own against most other courses on the list. Combining them all into one destination makes Bandon Dunes Golf Resort truly special.
The fourth course at Bandon Dunes pays homage to golf course architect Charles Blair Macdonald by asking one simple question: What would Macdonald have created had the Oregon Coast been his canvas? Inspired by Macdonald's iconic work, course architects Tom Doak and Jim Urbina crafted a course that seeks the answer upon vast greens, among myriad angles of play, and from the depths of fierce bunkers. By celebrating these classic concepts of design, they honored the traditions of this game we all love.
|Entry sign to the course.|
Initially, much of the land was shrouded in gorse but as the thick, dense vegetation was pulled back some startling landforms that were three to eight feet tall (ideal for golf) were found underneath. Despite being the fourth course built on the Bandon property, the land and its characteristics were most assuredly not the fourth best. Debate as to which of the four courses enjoys the best property from which to build a course is a matter of ongoing debate. Each property has its own defenders, be it the diversity of Bandon Trails to the number of cliff side holes afforded at Bandon Dunes to the sandy blowouts at Pacific Dunes and now the rippling land features, scale and long views at Old MacDonald.
|Flag used on the holes at Old MacDonald.|
At around 255,000 square feet, the greens at Old Macdonald are far and away the largest set of greens in the United States, and they provide the course with an unusual amount of flexibility in course set-up. There are five sets of tee boxes at Old MacDonald. From back to front, they are Black, Green, Gold, Blue, and Orange. I opted to play from the green tee boxes for both rounds and all distances are from those tee boxes.
The opening hole at Old Macdonald, named "Double Plateau", is a short par-4 that plays to 304 yards and has a wide fairway. Before hitting your tee shot, consider your distance to the bunkers and check the hole location to position yourself for the best angle into the green. When playing into the wind, you will likely need to add one or two clubs to get back to the hole.
|A look down the fairway from the 1st tee box.|
|A look into the 1st green from 75 yards out.|
The second hole, named "Eden", is a par three that plays to 181 yards. You will likely be hitting into the prevailing win. The hole features a back-to-front pitched green that is guarded by a deep revetted bunker at front right, as well as another bunker left.
|A look into the green from the 2nd tee box.|
|A look down onto the 2nd green from the top of the hill on #3.|
|A look towards the blind tee shot from the 3rd tee box.|
|A look down the fairway from the top of the hill.|
|A look into the green from 150 yards out.|
|A look into the green from the bottom of the hill, approx. 75 yards out.|
|A closer look onto the green from the backside.|
|A look down the fairway from the 4th tee box.|
|A closer look at the left side fairway bunker.|
|A look at the second shot if you hit the drive short or to the right.|
|A look into the 4th green from 220 yards out.|
|A look into the 4th green from 75 yards out.|
|A look back onto the 4th green from the top of the hill.|
The par 3 fifth hole, named "Short", plays to 134 yards. It is the shortest hole on the golf course plays to one of the largest greens. You want to pay particular attention to the hole location as there are several distinct areas to leave your golf ball. When in doubt, aiming for the center of the green is a good option.
|A look into the green from the 5th tee box.|
|A look down the fairway from the 6th tee box.|
|A look down the fairway towards the 6th green approximately 50 yards short of the cross bunker.|
|A closer look at the cross bunker.|
|A look into the 6th green from 75 yards out.|
|A closer look at the undulating 6th green.|
|A closer look at the green-side bunker.|
|A look up the fairway from the 7th tee box.|
|A look onto the 7th green from just off the right side.|
After playing the 7th hole, you get a stunning view of the ocean on the walk to the 8th tee box and snack shack. The walk was very similar to the walk from hole 4 to 5 at Barnbougle Dunes.
|A look down the ocean between the 7th green and 8th tee box.|
|A look into the green from the 8th tee box.|
|A closer look at the swale on the green.|
|A look down the fairway from the 9th tee box.|
|A closer look at the right-side fairway bunkers.|
|A look into the 9th green from 100 yards out.|
|A look down the fairway from the 10th tee box.|
|A closer look at some of the fairway bunkers.|
|A look into the 10th green from 120 yards out.|
|A closer look at the 10th green.|
|A look down the fairway from the 11th tee box.|
|A look into the 11th green from 100 yards out.|
|A closer look at the 11th green.|
|A look into the green from the 12th tee box.|
|A closer look at the 12th green.|
|A look down the fairway from the 13th tee box.|
|A look into the 13th green from 150 yards out.|
|A look into the 13th green from 120 yards out.|
|A look down the fairway from the 14th tee box.|
|A closer look at the fairway bunkers.|
|A closer look at the fairway bunkers.|
|A look onto the 14th green from the hill just behind it.|
|A look down the fairway from the 15th tee box.|
|A look into the 15th green from 100 yards out.|
|A look back onto the 15th green from the hill behind it.|
|A look down the fairway from the 16th tee box.|
|A closer look at the blind approach into the green.|
|A 150 yard look into the green from the right side of the fairway.|
|A look into the green from 100 yards out.|
|A look down the fairway from the 17th tee box.|
|A closer look at the bunkers in the middle of the fairway.|
|A look towards the green from 200 yards out.|
|A look into the green from 125 yards out.|
|A look down the fairway from the 18th tee box.|
|A look into the 18th green from 120 yards out.|
|A look into the 18th green from 75 yards out.|
After playing each of the courses at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort twice, I think I have settled on Old MacDonald being my favorite. It is likely due to my love of links courses and this one plays very much like a links course. Truth be told, you can't go wrong with any of the four. It just depends on preference of course type. The more I play the four different courses here, the more my appreciation grows for all of them. I look forward to my return on my annual pilgrimage back to Bandon every year.