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.
Many have probably seen that Old Elm Club in Highland Park has moved into the Golfweek Top 100 Classic Golf Courses. This course was already on my short list of courses to look at, but I think I am going to get to it sooner than I had thought.
Being from the area, Old Elm has always been a course that I would have risk being attacked by the superintendent’s dog to play. Stay tuned over the next few weeks for detailed topography and color ramp of Old Elm Club. Unfortunately, the data is going to be prior to the restoration that J. Drew Rodgers has been undertaking.
From a quick look of the existing grades, the course has 40 – 50 ft. of elevation change from the northeast portion of the site south and west towards the Skokie River.
What led me to take a look at this was looking at some photos that Jon Cavalier posted on Twitter(@LinksGems).
I had a little fun with this one since its hard to see a lot of the little intricacies of the grading in the fairways and around the greens. I did a few images in an attempt to make the grading stand out.
For those unfamiliar with the course location, it is located on Long Island and neighbors Shinnecock Hills and Peconic Bay.
I’ll be honest here: I loved watching the US Opens out there over the last few appearances, but until recently, I didn’t really get the history and layout of the country club. Now I can’t stop looking at it. It has its share of elevation changes from tee to green and also within the green complex itself.
Below is an aerial photo showing Oakmont Country Club. It also allows you to familiarize your self with different monuments on the course. Pew bunkers, Pennsylvania Turnpike, the Club House.
What really caught my eye looking at the topography is how much the course plays away from you on certain holes. Hole 1 and 10 play downhill approximately 60 feet from the back tees to the front of the green before falling another 4 feet – 6 feet from the front of the green to the back. Holes 9 and 11 play both uphill. While the 8th hole is a lengthy par 3, the hole only 8 feet – 12 feet downhill, which provides no elevation assistance to the player.
In addition to having to play with and into the grade, some of these fairways have a 8 feet – 12 feet elevation change from the left side of the fairway to the right side. Making the player face shots placing the ball above and below his or her feet.
Below is a contour map of Oakmont Country Club in 2-foot intervals. The map was generated using USGS Lidar data. You can tell on this image where the trees are. Filtering those points was a little more time consuming then I thought it was going to take so I left them visible. I believe this data was acquired between 2006 and 2008 so any changes after that time period will not be reflected.
The next few images show a color scale of Oakmont Country Club, also generated using USGS LIdar data.
For this I did an overlay of the 5-foot contouring to reduce the intensity a bit. The colors vary in elevations changes with some being a 10-foot change in elevation and others being a 2 foot – 3 foot change in elevation. The red colors are the higher elevations with the blue being the lower elevations.
For this last image, I turned up the transparency for the image above to give you a better chance at seeing the holes below the topography and color scale.
I don’t know much about the architecture or design of this course, but there is a great mix of using low and high spots of the course to work in both some tee boxes and green complexes. A course that is near the top of my list of ones to play if the opportunity ever came up.
I really thought that I had a handle on some decent data for the Pete Dye designed Whistling Straits in northern Wisconsin. Turns out I didn’t. My goal for that was to put a number to how much dirt was brought in to build the golf course. I’ve heard a few crazy estimates, but didn’t know the real number.
I’m going to keep a look out for that data but hope I can make it up to the visitors of the site. By the end of the week I am hoping to have a 3D rendering of Oakmont Country Club.
Until then, I hope this photo of the iconic church pew bunker can hold you over.
I’m hoping I get a chance to take a look at this golf course from a 3D perspective in the next few days. Great views of Lake Michigan and constructed to allow unobstructed views on both the front and back nine.