Palm Springs ON YOUR MIND

This is the time of year when the house­bound North­west golfer be­gins yearn­ing for the Coachella Val­ley to come to the res­cue.

Golf Today Northwest - - Front Page - By Tony Dear

Ev­ery golfer knows the story of how Robert Trent Jones joined club mem­bers and club pro Johnny Farrell at the tee of the 4th hole on Bal­tus­rol’s Lower Course, ahead of the 1954 US Open to prove to them his changes had not made the wa­ter­carry par 3 too dif­fi­cult. He promptly golfed a hole-in-one. A sim­i­lar thing hap­pened dur­ing con­struc­tion of the in­fa­mous Sta­dium Course at PGA West in 1986. Pete Dye, taught by Ernie Vossler and Joe Wasler – prin­ci­ples at the Land­mark Land Com­pany – to build the ‘hard­est damn course in the world’, was con­sid­er­ing how deep to dig a bunker to the left of the green at the par 5 16th. He told his bull­dozer op­er­a­tor to go down un­til he hit wa­ter. That didn’t hap­pen un­til well af­ter the 20-foot mark, how­ever. Joel Zuck­er­man tells the story in his ex­cel­lent book ‘Pete Dye Golf Cour­ses’, pub­lished in 2008. “The de­vel­op­ers were du­bi­ous about the pe­nal na­ture of the hazard,” Zuck­er­man says. “Even though they had asked Dye for an ex­tremely dif­fi­cult course, they thought this 20+ foot bunker might be a lit­tle too much. But with his first at­tempt, Dye man­aged to ex­tri­cate his ball and put it on the green. So they let it stand.” Okay, Dye didn’t hole out like Jones had done at Bal­tus­rol, but it was still a pretty im­pres­sive shot. Un­like most of the pub­lic golfers that would sub­se­quently strug­gle in this sub­ter­ranean cav­ity, how­ever, Dye had been an ac­com­plished am­a­teur golfer, good enough to win the In­di­ana State Am­a­teur and qual­ify for both the US

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