Sorry for all the pictures of Pete. I played in his group a lot. And this happens to be good shot. Unlike
the one he is about to hit. In fact, just pretend funny hat boy is not in the frame, and imagine yourself
There, that’s better. We’ve left the tee, and this is looking back. This hole might be the most
spectacular part of the property. The second day we played here, the winds were blustering in from
an unusual westerly angle, with the sea churning up 20-25 foot swells. We found the woman who
works the snack shack standing out on this promontory awestruck by a view she sees every day. I
love this place. Y’all coming with me next year?
Still on #4, Big J contemplates life, the universe, and everything.
Back to back par threes, numbers 10 and 11 at Pacific, make for another breathtaking part of the
course. Here is the tenth from green level. Note the scruffy bunkers in the background; they front the
The Champ on the tenth tee. I’ll take a wild guess; he’s hitting a D-wedge.
The trek to the green. So y’all coming next year?
Told you you’d see those bunkers again. Number 11 from just ahead of the tee-box.
Same hole, from behind the green. Crofton, about to play a hook into the wind, is visible on the tee in
the background. Where’d the scruffy bunkers go? The magic of world class design.
Rainbow in the distance, Champ (who likes rainbows. And George Michael.) lets ‘er fly on 13.
A magical place.
(Thirteen fairway from fourteen tee. )
Well, it’s been at least 22 hours since the last poker game. Best head down to the Bunker Bar. Scotch
anyone? Cigar? Game of nine-ball? Change the channel? Apart from the two dudes at the bar who
stayed for an hour or so, we had the run of this place for two nights. Alex, the barman, took to calling
us in the pub asking if we were coming down tonight. And did we need another bottle of Lagavulin.
Morning coffees in tow, the fellas shake the cobwebs to tackle Bandon Dunes.
Like Pacific Dunes, the third at Bandon is a par five with a subtle introduction to the ocean in the
distance. Crofton surveys, glad he doesn’t play a fade.
As promised, #4 doglegs right, and the approach plays to the
ocean, exposed to the elements.
Bandon Dunes has no shortage of seaside holes. In fact, six of the green complexes reside on the
clifftop. Below is my attempt at an artistic vista. Kev would go crazy here with his random golf course
Big J on #6, demonstrating how to pull out of the Fat Man Chop with a chicken wing.
Wonger owned Bandon #6, playing it twice in 5 total strokes, the second time in 50 mph winds and
horizontal hail. More on this later.
The pictures say it all. And Wong adds the exclamation point.
Warning: steer clear of the bunkers. Below, Wessel tries to extricate himself from The Bunker of
Death. It’s his own fault. The hole of the day from Dec 9 said, “avoid the 18 foot deep bunker left-front
of the green at all costs.” On the tee box about 7 minutes prior to this picture, Big J said, “Whatever
you do, don’t go in the bunker.” By some miracle, Pete, who lies one on the par four, makes bogey –
one he would later admit as one of his top-three bogeys ever.
And if the bunkers don’t get you, other peril awaits. Ask Dean.
Like everything except the golf, the clubhouse is understated. No spa, no valet parking, no
chandeliers, no theme-uniformed bag boys. Oh, and no freebies. Legend has it they made Arnold
Palmer pay greens fees.
Number 16 at Bandon is the signature hole. It plays into the howling winter winds, as evidenced by
the Michelin Man effect on our clothes.
A bemused Young Crofton seems unsure how to tackle the gale in his face on 16. Note the split
fairway behind him. It was about 200 yds to carry the gorse and find the spacious left side. But that
was a dubious choice in the conditions. The two-putt par I made here was maybe my best hole of the
81 we played.
One of my favourite photos. View back to 16 tee from left side of split fairway.
I know, I know, it’s Wessel again, but it’s a dang good photo, no?
Of the four full
was a non-
but no big
push for more
on the solstice
day, Old Man
Winter sent his
and hail, and
and all. Here,
Champ and I
are trying to
dry out our
pants. Or, in
Trails has a different feel. More pastoral, serene. We played it last, on the same day we were to
return, and I kinda regret the timing. It felt like the course didn’t get its due. We stretched out our last
round to nearly six hours, but I felt the fellas thought it anticlimactic. Obviously, it can’t compete with
the scenery of its seaside cousins, but I think it to be an outstanding test, and at least the second best
course on the property.
Classic Bandon Trails hole – number 13 par four. Wonger prepares to hit his approach to a huge,
slopy green, with trouble long and BIG trouble right (in the form of The Boy’s Bunker. He fell in it last
Wonger plays out, and climbs out, of The
The tee shot on the Hole of Death. Six guys, best score was a bogey. 315 yd par four. Fairway slopes
from left to hell, and the sliver of a green perches menacingly on a precipice. Hit it left off the tee, and
pray you hit the green with your wedge. Take three putts and walk away quietly.