I’ve always been amazed by golf course construction. The ability to take heavy machinery, fine grade and carve the land to exact elevations and get it to withstand the elements.
In the few projects I’ve been involved in, its always been a restoration or renovation where a golf course exists and the work is done within the existing footprint.
Sand Hills Golf Club didn’t appear to have a footprint to stay within.
I was able to find a few aerial photos from the USGS that were taken during construction, after opening and a photo from within the last few years.
The first photo compares during construction (approx 1992) to after opening (approx 1999). First thing I noticed was how many of the haul and access roads went on to become fairways when compete. Also notice the area and sequencing of when things were completed.
Next photo compares the 1999 photo with the more modern (approx 2015) photo. One thing that stuck out was how much some of the bunkers had changed in that time period.
The Fishers Island Club was on my short list when I started The Bottom Groove. I’ve always been interested in how a historic course such as this was constructed during the time period.
After reading the write up Andy did at The Fried Egg and taking a closer look at the pictures Jon Cavalier did that were included in the write up, I became a little more intrigued as to how the course was not only routed, but how elevation played a role in the design.
As a follow up to Bandon Dunes, I wanted to take a look at Pacific Dunes. This course neighbors Bandon Dunes to the north and from what I have been told has a similar amount of fine grading leading up to and around the green complexes.
Another brief touch on history –
Designed by Tom Doak and the Renaissance Golf Design group and opened in 2001. This was the second course in the series of courses that make up the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort experience.
Talking to people who have visited, many say Pacific Dunes is easily their favorite of all the Bandon Courses.
I wanted to throw out some of the topography and color ramps I created for Erin Hills. Like the other golf courses I looked at, I took a look at 10-foot, 5-foot and 2-foot contour interval in addition to a transparent and non-transparent color ramp with and without contours.
Erin Hills, host of the 2008 US Women’s Public Links, 2011 US Amateur and 2017 US Open. I’ve been lucky enough to get out and play this one and I can assure you that it is quite the walk. You wouldn’t think much of the elevation on this chunk of land would be natural in the middle of Wisconsin. I got lucky to get this data since much of Wisconsin can be spotty when it comes to Lidar data.