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Mark Saltzman

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Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« on: January 19, 2012, 08:29:23 PM »
Over the past year or so, I have played about a dozen Donald Ross golf courses.  I noticed about half of them have long cross-bunkered par-3s.

Is this a Ross template? I don't have Brad's book with me and cannot recall if he talks about this.

Did Ross ever write about this type of par-3? What is the purpose of the cross-bunker? Do any other architects do this often?

Of the holes I have seen, the cross-bunkers were used quite differently, but in all cases, they were at least 15 yards short of the green. 

Any info and any other examples?

Here are the ones I have noticed:


Aronimink's 14th:




Biltmore's 8th





Carolina GC's 3rd




CC of Buffalo's 8th - this one requires some imagination as a meddlesome greens committee has removed the cross-bunkering which was on top of the hill




Charlotte CC's 3rd




Rosedale's 4th


Tim Passalacqua

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2012, 08:34:55 PM »
Mackenzie did this on the third hole of Pasatiempo.  About 214 from the whites. It plays uphill, but I feel like the cross bunker is 50-70 yards short of the green.  Great golf hole.

JNC Lyon

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2012, 08:38:19 PM »
The ridge on CCB's 8th always screamed to me for cross bunkers.  Will they bring them back as part of the restoration?
"That's why Oscar can't see that!" - Philip E. "Timmy" Thomas

Jeff_Mingay

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2012, 08:39:46 PM »
Mark,

In some cases, these were considered 'topped shot bunkers'. They were - again, in some cases - located to prevent topped shots from running onto the greens.
jeffmingay.com

Mark Saltzman

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2012, 08:40:15 PM »
The ridge on CCB's 8th always screamed to me for cross bunkers.  Will they bring them back as part of the restoration?

The asst pro I played when I visited said that they are planning on restoring them, but that's all I know.

Matthew Sander

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2012, 08:43:17 PM »
More great pics Mark!

There has been some discussion on this type of bunker before regarding the purpose. One possible explanation is they served as a distance obstacle in the times when playing the ground game was more common or even the best option. Most of the holes you've shown look very open to a ground approach in front (with the possible exception of Carolina GC's 3rd which looks downhill to an elevated green??). In order to land it short and bounce it on, you would still have to navigate either around or over the bunker...
« Last Edit: January 19, 2012, 08:58:50 PM by Matthew Sander »

JNC Lyon

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2012, 08:43:24 PM »
The ridge on CCB's 8th always screamed to me for cross bunkers.  Will they bring them back as part of the restoration?

The asst pro I played when I visited said that they are planning on restoring them, but that's all I know.

Bang biscuit.  I'm very excited to see how that course looks after the restoration.
"That's why Oscar can't see that!" - Philip E. "Timmy" Thomas

BHoover

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2012, 08:52:16 PM »
The 7th at Canton Brookside and the 13th at Columbus CC both have similar cross bunkers. Unfortunately, I can't find pictures of either.

jonathan_becker

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2012, 09:04:54 PM »
The 7th at Canton Brookside and the 13th at Columbus CC both have similar cross bunkers. Unfortunately, I can't find pictures of either.

Here's 7 at the mighty Brookside.  I wish I had a better photo


BHoover

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2012, 09:12:13 PM »
Here is a photo of the 13th at Columbus CC. The picture doesn't really do the hole justice. I think it's similar to the 7th at Canton Brookside.

http://i101.photobucket.com/albums/m77/buckichop/CCC/CCC13.jpg

Ed Oden

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2012, 09:50:25 PM »
Mark, I don't recall seeing anything that ties cross bunkers specifically to Ross' par 3s.  But they clearly fit his general statements on diagonal bunkers in "Golf Has Never Failed Me":

"Here is a good hazard that I feel to be a very fair one.  It can be built for either a tee shot or a second shot, providing a carry of any desired length."

From what I have seen, Ross used cross bunkers regularly on holes of all lengths and pars, not just the par 3s.  So I think cross bunkers were more a feature that matched his design philosophy generally than an indicator of a par 3 template.  That being said, I agree that he used them frequently on par 3s.  A few more exxamples...

#9 at Biltmore Forest


#9 at Mimosa Hills


#13 at Mimosa Hills


#14 at Mountain Ridge


#17 at Salisbury


#3 at Sedgefield

Ronald Montesano

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2012, 10:34:58 PM »
Marco,

Did they tell you when the bunkers were removed by said meddling greens committee at cCBuffalo?

What about hole #6? Would you call those cross or greenfront bunkers?
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Tyler Kearns

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #12 on: January 20, 2012, 10:36:38 AM »
Mark,

Both Pine Ridge & Elmhurst, both designed by Ross here in Winnipeg feature(d) them.  They are located on the longer one-shotters, and may also serve to challenge those who need two strokes to reach the green.

TK

Mark McKeever

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #13 on: January 20, 2012, 10:48:45 AM »
Schuylkill doesnt have any...

Mark
Best MGA showers - Bayonne

"Dude, he's a total d***"

Ed Homsey

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #14 on: January 20, 2012, 09:57:20 PM »
I don't have a picture, but I believe Teugaga Cc's 3rd hole would qualify, but the cross bunkers are more than 15 yards from the green.

Greg Chambers

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #15 on: January 20, 2012, 11:03:38 PM »
visual deception...the rangefinder never sees that bunker  :-\
"It's good sportsmanship to not pick up lost golf balls while they are still rolling.

Eric_Terhorst

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #16 on: January 21, 2012, 11:02:03 AM »
Mark, I agree with Ed Oden's comment that cross-bunkers are regularly used on Ross holes of all length and par.  Two of my Ross favorites, French Lick and Holton Hills, have 3s, 4s and 5s with important cross-bunkers.

Here are two par 3 examples.


Mid-length #11 at Holston Hills (photo credit Bradley Anderson)






The long #13 at French Lick

 


jonathan_becker

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #17 on: January 21, 2012, 11:11:19 AM »
Saltzman,

There aren't many chances to run it up here.


Bradley Anderson

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #18 on: January 21, 2012, 11:26:14 AM »
The 16th at Rackham. These are probably untouched originals.





16th hole is in the upper right quadrant of the original map. Playing at a whopping 225!

« Last Edit: January 21, 2012, 11:31:26 AM by Bradley Anderson »

Tom MacWood

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #19 on: January 21, 2012, 12:01:45 PM »
There is no doubt that particular bunkering scheme was a common one used by Ross on his par-3s, but I'd be interested to know how many of those modern holes had the scheme originally and how many were added later by other architects, especially architects specializing in Ross restorations. Based on the prototypical look of most of those bunkers my guess is the majority of these courses have been 'restored' in the last decade.

Where is Salisbury?

Mark Saltzman

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #20 on: January 21, 2012, 12:19:13 PM »


#9 at Biltmore Forest



Is that a Ross redan? Now that is atypical. I've never seen him design a redan green -- are there others?

Dale Jackson

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #21 on: January 21, 2012, 12:28:12 PM »
Mark,

In some cases, these were considered 'topped shot bunkers'. They were - again, in some cases - located to prevent topped shots from running onto the greens.

I play at a course that has a 220 yard Par 3 that used to have a cross bunker about 50 yards short of the green and for years I wondered why the architect - AV Macan -  had put it there, it seemed to punish only the high handicap player and never the low handicap player.  Macan, in his writings, was always insistent that his designs allowed the high handicap player to enjoy his day while still challenging the better player.

Then I played the course with hickories and period style golf balls and it all became clear.  With the much reduced driving distances and the inability to spin the ball like we can with today's equipment, that bunker challenged the better player by insisting he drive over the bunker and run the ball onto the green, anything less and the ball mould find that bunker.   But it was positioned so that the "dub" could play around it and try to make bogie.  It was a design feature that matched the game as it was played 100 or so years ago.
I've seen an architecture, something new, that has been in my mind for years and I am glad to see a man with A.V. Macan's ability to bring it out. - Gene Sarazen

Carl Johnson

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #22 on: January 21, 2012, 12:34:42 PM »
There is no doubt that particular bunkering scheme was a common one used by Ross on his par-3s, but I'd be interested to know how many of those modern holes had the scheme originally and how many were added later by other architects, especially architects specializing in Ross restorations. Based on the prototypical look of most of those bunkers my guess is the majority of these courses have been 'restored' in the last decade.

Where is Salisbury?

Tom,

The Country Club of Salisbury is in Salisbury, North Carolina, which is about 40 miles northeast of Charlotte.   http://www.ccofsalisbury.com/viewCustomPage.aspx?id=1

Carolina Golf Club in Charlotte presents a good case in point about the "restoration" of cross bunkers.  Mark's original post above shows par 3 number 3 (232 yds.) at Carolina.  The cross bunker was restored in Kris Spence's 2008 restoration/renvovation.  Immediately prior to Kris's work there were no bunkers on this hole.  However, Ross's original 1929 drawing of the course shows a cross bunker in this location.  The same is true on no. 9 at Carolina, also a long par 3 (237 yds.).  Immediately prior to the renovation there was no cross bunker on this hole, but the Ross drawing showed across bunker and Kris put one in at that location durning his work.  See Ed Oden's follow-up post below for photos of no. 9.  For comparison of the Ross drawing and Spence's restoration plan, see Ed's initial post in his tread on Compliation of Routing Maps, Plans and Architectural Drawings (http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,43053.0.html), keeping in mind that no. 3 today was number 8 on the Ross plan, while no. 9 today was no. 5 on the Ross plan.  So, in the Carolina GC situation the cross bunkers were not there on 3 and 9 prior to the Spence restoration/renovation, but were added by Spence to reflect what was shown on the original Ross plan.  My understanding, second (plus) hand, is that many of the original Ross bunkers on the course were eliminated durning WWII as a maintenance cost-saving measure.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2012, 04:34:30 PM by Carl Johnson »

Doug Wright

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Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #23 on: January 21, 2012, 12:40:23 PM »
Mark,

Brad Klein can advise authoritatively on this but I think this bunker was very much a regular Ross feature on his longer (200+ yard) par 3s, which Ross included on flatter parts of the property on many course designs. Another example appears at Wilmington NC Municipal GC, restored by Ron Prichard.
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Patrick_Mucci

Re: Donald Ross' Cross-Bunkered Par-3s
« Reply #24 on: January 21, 2012, 01:25:22 PM »
Mark,

The answer to your question may lie in Ross's introduction of 'top shot' bunkers on par 4's and par 5's.

A cross bunkered par 3 may be the design feature meant to function as a top shot bunker.

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