Spyglass Hill - 5th November 2011

 

All a golfer can ask for

This is a modern masterpiece at Pebble Beach – dramatic, demanding and remarkable design. The contrast in style between rolling dunes, ocean vistas and towering pines is very unique.

This is a very difficult golf course. The opening five holes sweep down towards the Pacific shoreline providing spectacular views. The two par 4’s are fairly short, but the prevailing wind will make them much longer. Precise shots are a must.

From the elevated 6th green you’ll see the ocean for the last time and the holes are now turning in to the forest. It’s a total new challenge of holes framed by trees, bunkers and water hazards. Some of the holes reminds my about Augusta National.

The back nine measures 3261 yards from the Gold tee, but it plays much longer since the holes are primarily uphill. The par 4’s becomes very long and you’ll be very pleased to be on green in two shots. It’s more a game of be short of green after two shots and do some magic around the greens to occasionally get a par. Precision is also extremely important since you have narrow dog leg fairways up and down.

You’ll have 18 very different holes and all of them are extremely well laid out. My favorites are:

Hole 3 – 150 yards par 3

The elevated tee gives you a spectacular view of the Pacific behind the green. You’ll hit straight towards the Pacific and most likely right in to the wind. Club choice is crucial. There is no alternative. Either you’ll hit the green or is in the sand and on the spot. 8-iron on the green edge, 2 put for a par. Got away with it!

Hole 4 – 358 yards par 4

The pin position will determine your tee shot. If it’s in the back, you should approach it form the right and if the pin is in the front, the left side of fairway is best for attack. The green is a narrow and small in a hollow. Great hole with choices. Fairway wood in good position to the left of fairway, 8-iron on to 15 feet from pin, terrible 3 put for a bogey 5!!

Hole 8 – 375 yards par 4 (Signal Hill)

It may be the longest hole under 400 yards in the world. It’s uphill all the way to an elevated green with a huge bunker on the left front. This is the index 1 hole at Spyglass Hill. Good drive 240 yards off tee, 3-iron in the bunker, out of the bunker and short of pin, 2 put for a bogey 5. I’m happy.

Hole 14 – 525 yards par 5

A beautiful double dogleg swinging down to the right and then left. A pond protects the right side of this shallow, but very wide green. This is a stunning hole. I messed it up totally - a fairly good drive to the right in the semi rough, a second shot in OK position on the left side of fairway, third shot is in the pond, 5th is on the green, two put for a double bogey 7.

I played with three American guys and they played well all the way through the course. Yes, a few hick ups on this difficult course, but that’s just normal. I was a disaster today and in particular on the back nine where I lost it totally. I did shot a 41 on the front nine. It is OK, but I did not hit the ball well enough to deserve it. I didn’t do anything right on the back nine and it shows on the score, 45 shots. A total of 86 shots (gross) is nothing to be proud of and I certainly have some unfinished business with this golf course.

 

Spyglass Hill is a spectacular and challenging golf course. It’ll test every shot you have and you need to fight back as hard as you can on every hole. You need distance, you need precision and you need creativity. This is a true test of golf in a very beautiful landscape – brilliant.

Spyglass Hill