Golf Club Atlas

GolfClubAtlas.com => Golf Course Architecture => Topic started by: Mark Saltzman on May 25, 2011, 11:18:25 PM

Title: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on May 25, 2011, 11:18:25 PM
Crag Burn is located in East Aurora, NY, just east of Buffalo.  It is, in my opinion, a fantastic example of RTJ penal architecture.  

I would love to hear from those that have played Crag Burn their opinion of the course as whole and the holes as they are posted.

One thing that I noticed is that the style of architecture used made it very difficult to predict how to play the golf course.  In many cases, the bunkers were not used as an element to be challenged to gain some sort of advantage for the next shot, but as a penalty for a shot missed in the wrong place.  However, on some holes (3 and 16 for example), significant advantage was gained by challenging the bunkers.  This course is fantastic and requires many plays to get a real feel for each hole's strategy.

Enjoy.

All yardages are from the gold tees (second from back, CR: 74.2, SL 135).

Hole 1: Par 4, 416 Yards

The first tee offers a very generous fairway, with flanking bunkers left and right.  The view of the flag from the tee tempts the player to try to carry to fairway bunkers on the right to leave a short iron into the green, but the carry is much longer than it appears.  Even a tee shot that carries the bunkers, will likely find thick rough.  The green opens up more from the left than from the right.  The prudent play is down the middle.  This is but the first example of bunkering that despite enticing the player, should not be challenged.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/01tee.jpg)

View from a tee shot missed right

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CragBurn-1fromright.jpg)

View from fairway

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/01fromfairway.jpg)

Green

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/01green-1.jpg)



Hole 2: Par 5, 595 Yards.

A beast of a par 5.  Off the tee, it felt appeared as though the rough jutted into the fairway in several places to narrow it.  However, when reaching the DZ it became clear that what appeared to be rough jutting into the fairway was actually subtle mounding that would serve to help keep balls near the rough in the fairway.  A clever visual trick.

The second shot, from 300+, gives almost no visual clues.  It is not until 225 yards out that the green (and the large water hazard in front of it) comes into clear view.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/02tee.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/02fairway.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/02from225.jpg)


The approach over the hazard looks much more difficult than it plays.  On several occasions, RTJ was able to make very large greens appear very small.  Standing in the fairway I thought I was hitting into a #12 at Augusta-esque green.  When reaching the green I was amazed at how deep the green was.  Another clever visual trick.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/02approach.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/02green-1.jpg)
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 2 Posted
Post by: Frank_M on May 26, 2011, 01:55:08 AM
Looking good Mark....looking forward to the rest
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 2 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on May 26, 2011, 05:34:31 AM
I'll attempt to be pithy...On #1, there is so much room center-left for the proud driver of the ball who is fighting the urge to challenge the right-corner bunkers. The line in to the green is smoother from the right edge of the fairway, but the driving angles are vastly different (and easier) as one moves forward from back to second-back to middle to up to forward tee decks (there are usually five tee decks per hole at Crag Burn.) The green is best missed front-center, as a pitch/runner up the fall line has greater success than an angular recovery from the left (grass bunkering) or the right (beach bunkering).

#2 for years was my least-favorite par five on the course and I was glad it came early (I'm not a member, but I have occasion to play Crag Burn with golf teams from time to time.) There seemed to be no "wow" factor for two-thirds of the hole, until the final act, when the water carry (i.e. greatness) is thrust upon you!. There is no sand on the hole, beyond a backing bunker behind the green. I find the bunker unnecessary; penal architecture without sand? Absolutely. After the long march from tee to green, the putting surface is subtle but not overwhelming. It is divided into quadrants, but they reflect the gently-moving heathland from which CB was hewn.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 2 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on May 26, 2011, 10:43:58 AM
Hole 3: Par 4, 340 Yards.

One of the best holes on the course and an excellent short 4.  Having been duped challenging the bunkers on 1, I wasn't sure if the bunker on the left of the fairway was to be challenged.  RTJ's treachery already at work on me. 

Upon reaching the fairway it becomes clear that pin location dictates the decision from the tee.  Any pin on the front-right portion of the green is much easier to attack from the left side of the fairway (reached by challenging the bunker).  There is a small and difficult back-left portion of the green that is much easier to access from the right side of the fairway. 

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CragBurn-3tee.jpg)

Right side of fairway

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/03fromright-1.jpg)

Left Side of fairway

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/03fromleft-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/03green.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/03behindgreen.jpg)
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 3 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on May 26, 2011, 10:24:41 PM
Amazed that there is not more commentary on this course. Take two, hole three:

There is a story that circulates about Gary McCord driving this green from the way backs with wooden head and balata ball, and subsequently turning to the previously-arrogant pro-am participant, remarking "you guys have NO IDEA how good we are."

This hole is a great time...bang your driver over the left bunker with some right-to-left or play your hybrid out to the right. It's a thin green, to be sure, pinched in the middle, almost like a dumbbell...sand on either side, more on the right than the left.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 3 Posted
Post by: Matt Bosela on May 26, 2011, 10:43:48 PM
I've never had the pleasure of seeing Crag Burn but many people I know speak fondly of it.

Looking forward to the next set of holes...
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 6 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on May 27, 2011, 09:35:48 AM
Hole 4: Par 4, 385 Yards.

Standard dog-leg right par 4.  Any tee shot that his hit either not far enough left, or not long enough will be blocked out by the trees on the right.  The green is very well protected with bunkers left, right and long.  Leaving the front of the green open means that a player blocked out by trees off the tee still has a chance of hitting a great recovery under the tree limbs, running on to the green.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/04tee-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/04fromright.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/04fromleft.jpg)



Hole 5: Par 3, 198 Yards.

A kind of typical par 3 over water.  Once again, this green appears very shallow off the tee, making for a very intimidating tee shot, but the green is actually quite deep.  Mr. Montesano pointed out that if you look at the far-right in the last picture there is actually a men's tee playing from 130 yards through the shoot of trees from a pretty cool angle to the green.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/05.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/05fromright.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/05fromleft.jpg)


Hole 6: Par 4, 395 Yards.

Another one of my favorite holes.  Water left, trees right, hit it straight!  Visually, however, this hole appears very wide open.  The water is not really visible and the trees appears further right than they actually are. One of the narrowest tee shots on the course appears to be one of the widest.

A tee shot down the middle leaves a very good opportunity to hit it close.  A tee shot missed right, however, is about dead.

The entire fairway slopes right to left, but just before the green the slope becomes more severe.  This means that any player trying to escape jail from the right by running a ball onto the green will likely be caught by this slope and find the water hazard.  On an RTJ golf course, if you hit a bad tee shot, you are supposed to make bogey.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/06tee.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/06fromright-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/06fromleft.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/06frombehind.jpg)
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 6 Posted
Post by: Kevin Lynch on May 27, 2011, 10:36:51 AM
Thanks for the in-depth tour, Mark.

I live only 6 miles from the place, but have never seen it.  Looking forward to the rest.  Locally, it is regarded highly as the true "golfer's club" of the area (i.e. not the one for the casual 18+ handicapper).  A heavy percentage of Buffalo District Champions play out of Crag Burn.

Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 6 Posted
Post by: Bill Hyde on May 27, 2011, 11:08:21 AM
I am a former member of Crag Burn and absolutely love the course. In fact, I still play it regularly (the house you can sort of see on 6 is my in-law's place...built by the Wyckoff's who were a founding family). This course is quite flat, RTJ added interest to the land with a series of highly-engineered ponds with a sophisticated pump system to keep water flowing. The first 7 holes reflect a modern parkland style, but after you tee off on 8, the place opens up to heathland. It could be said this course was a forerunner to the renaissance architecture we all admire today. There is generous room off every tee...but stray too far and you're in waist-deep "heather." It looks incredible in the late summer when the grass begins to brown out. It has a great collection of par 5s, 2-long and brutal, 8-a chance to recover a shot before the turn, 14-a wonderful risk-reward hole, and 16-another risk-reward that let's you regain some ground. It also has two wonderful short par 4s, 3-already featured and 11-a great short hole with the course's most vexing green. I hope there are some pictures posted of the clubhouse and outbuildings which are gorgeous 1920's clapboard buildings which served as the former stable for the estate across North Davis...you even eat dinner in the old stalls!! This is a low-key club with a lot of "regular guy" members and who love the game!! Amazing practice facility, too. Lastly, 15 is my favorite hole, not for architectural reasons but because it's where I asked my father-in-law if I could marry his daughter...his remark at the wedding dinner: "It took 14 holes before I hit a shot that put me in a good enough mood for Bill to ask my permission!!"
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 6 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on May 27, 2011, 01:49:53 PM
Here's what I can add to 4-6:

Hole # 4
Exactly as Mark describes...RTJ SR draws your eye to the right side, bending the hole that way. To cement this false line of charm, he places bunkers on the left to push you back to the right. When you've found the trees more than once, you get a distance to the bunkers and play whatever club keeps you short of the sand, in the fairway. You have no more than a middle iron in to the green, where short is the best missed, as you go up the fall line on a putting surface that slopes from right to left. Long is thick rough, left and right are sand.

Hole # 5
Since the green wraps around the pond, there are a series of interesting hole locations. From front left and right to middle (on top of a ridge) to lower back left. The ball can be run (a la a redan shot) up the green, across the ridge and down to the left. Due to my miscommunication, sadly, Mark got the location of the hidden tee wrong. If you look at the first photo of number five, imagine going up the slope of rough to the left...it is in those trees where the hidden tee resides. The shot is 130 downhill yards ACROSS the pond...it is no more than a pitching wedge and shows a wide green (versus a deep one) as your target. I'll try to grab a shot and put it up.

Hole # 6
Of the first 6 holes, four are par fours and three of those four slide from left to right. The straight ball will always work, but the apparent optimum play is the fade. The 6th fairway sits high on the right and low on the left in the drive zone. It is another example of a hole where laying back, rather than challenging the length of the driving corridor, is the best play. The green is angled toward the fairway and will accept a long iron or hybrid. Finding the fairway and avoiding the trees, rough and water is optimal here.

Unlike a typical RTJ SR course, all six hole of the first third of the course can be played with putter from tee to green. The front of the putting surface is open (conducive to a run-up) on these holes.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 6 Posted
Post by: John Blain on May 27, 2011, 03:05:54 PM
I agree with everything that Bill Hyde said in his post. Crag Burn is one of those really cool places in the golf world. It's not only a terrific, walkable, playable golf course, the club scores a "10" in ambiance. No swimming, no tennis, no weddings, just a great golf course, great practice facility, pure golf. I understand they have plans to add rooms to the clubhouse with the hopes of attracting a national non-resident type of membership.

I have a very good friend who used to work with RTJ, Sr. and he told my friend that of all the courses he did over the years, all over the world, Crag Burn may very well have been his favorite course.

In my opinion, if you just want a pure golf experience, it's the best club in upstate New York.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 6 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on May 27, 2011, 06:01:03 PM
Here's what I can add to 4-6:

Hole # 5
Due to my miscommunication, sadly, Mark got the location of the hidden tee wrong. If you look at the first photo of number five, imagine going up the slope of rough to the left...it is in those trees where the hidden tee resides. The shot is 130 downhill yards ACROSS the pond...it is no more than a pitching wedge and shows a wide green (versus a deep one) as your target. I'll try to grab a shot and put it up.

Ron,

I think I got the location correct.  My final picture of 5 is from behind the green.  I described the tee as to the right in the picture (ie left of the regular tee boxes).  I'm pretty sure you can see the shoot (sp?) and even a glimpse of the green in the right side of that final picture.  No?
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 6 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on May 27, 2011, 06:28:45 PM
Hole 7: Par 3, 180 Yards.

After playing holes 2 and 5, with greens that appear very shallow but are actually quite deep, when one sees the 7th hole, the immediate thought is that the same visual trick is likely.  The 7th green appears very shallow, but I clubbed it as though the green was quite deep - It wasn't.  This is just a very tough green to hit.  Plenty of width, but you better get your yardage right.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/07.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/07fromleft.jpg)


Hole 8: Par 5, 511 Yards.

A very birdieable hole, provided one is not tempted to challenge the bunkers on this hole.  With the green in view from the tee and the tempting yardage of the hole, one immediately wants to try to carry the left-hand fairway bunkers for a chance to get home in two.  Fortunately I pushed my tee shot as there is no way in heck I was getting over those bunkers.  Those bunkers are a penalty for a shot missed left - they are not to be challenged.

The second shot plays quite a bit like the tee shot.  Once again, one is tempted to challenge the left-side bunkers.  Once again, this would be the wrong choice.  The preferred angle is not from the left.  Even if one manages to carry the bunkers, he will find nothing but thick rough.  As with the tee shot, the bunkers are a penalty for a shot missed left - they are not to be challenged.

Ron, please assist me in describing the green.  I remember it being interesting, but don't remember it well enough to provide details.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/08tee.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/08fairway.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/08approach.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/08green-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/08green2-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/08greenfrom9.jpg)


Hole 9: 406 Yards.

After holes 1 and 8 I had learned that fairway bunkers were not to be challenged at Crag Burn.  At 9, however, the opposite is true.  A well hit tee shot to the right of the bunkers will run through the fairway.  The ideal line is either short of the bunkers, or to challenge the first of the two bunkers (about 225 yard carry) to leave the ideal approach.  The third photo is of the area just over the fairway bunkers.  It may not look like it, but there is about 10 yards of very thick rough there.  I would love to see this mowed down so that a tee shot that just carries the bunkers is not penalized.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CragBurn-9tee.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/09approach.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/09backofbunkers.jpg)
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Front 9 Posted
Post by: Dan Herrmann on May 27, 2011, 08:24:05 PM
Aah, Crag Burn.  Back in my UB days, Crag Burn was this legendary course that schmucks (oops - starving college students :) ) could only long to play.  (Just having fun!)

I'm really happy to see the pictures.  Any chance other Buffalo area courses could be added in the future?  I'd love to see Country Club of Buffalo and Park.  And Niagara Falls CC has a special place in my heart from my Porter Cup days (as a gallery member!).  It was the first course I ever saw that made me think "whoa - this is different than the munis I've been playing, and it's GOOOOD!"
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Front 9 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on May 27, 2011, 09:54:13 PM
Dan,

I have some pictures from CCB, though not enough to do a full photo tour.  I can post a few later.  The 6th is probably worth a thread of its own - what a spectacular golf hole!
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Front 9 Posted
Post by: JNC Lyon on May 27, 2011, 10:18:28 PM
Wish I had seen this thread a bit earlier, as I've played Crag Burn three times and definitely enjoy the place.  3 is an absolutely dynamite short par four.  That green is very nifty, and it is not something you see often from RTJ.  5 is a decent long par three with some Redan characteristics.  I think it offers more than the average water par three (unlike 7, which I see as a tough, one-dimensional short hole).  9 is a fantastic par four, doglegging hard left around an old silo (or watchtower? I can't remember which).  The split fairway is well done here, with the shorter approach from the left offering an advantage over the right with the risk of a narrower fairway.  I thought the options were balanced well at the 9th, and it challenges 3 for my favorite hole on the front nine.

Mark, the bunkering layout you describe in your opening post qualifies as PENAL architecture.  In many cases, the holes at Crag Burn are penal in the typical Trent Jones way.  Bunkers penalize shots rather than challenging the good angles into greens and setting up strategic options.  However, what I see at Crag Burn a lot is a certain "line of charm" to be avoided.  On holes like 1, 2, 4, and 8, the golfer is goaded, either by the appearance of the flag on the horizon or the shape of the golf hole, into challenging hazards (varying between water, trees, and bunkers) and taking a direct line to the green.  In some cases, this challenge might pay off, but more often than not it can result it a high number.

Crag Burn is a penal golf course in many respects, but the course relies on deception and subtlety rather than straight brutality.  This elevates to a higher level than the average golf course and makes it worth playing and studying.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Front 9 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on May 27, 2011, 11:11:28 PM
Wish I had seen this thread a bit earlier, as I've played Crag Burn three times and definitely enjoy the place.  3 is an absolutely dynamite short par four.  That green is very nifty, and it is not something you see often from RTJ.  5 is a decent long par three with some Redan characteristics.  I think it offers more than the average water par three (unlike 7, which I see as a tough, one-dimensional short hole).  9 is a fantastic par four, doglegging hard left around an old silo (or watchtower? I can't remember which).  The split fairway is well done here, with the shorter approach from the left offering an advantage over the right with the risk of a narrower fairway.  I thought the options were balanced well at the 9th, and it challenges 3 for my favorite hole on the front nine.

Mark, the bunkering layout you describe in your opening post qualifies as PENAL architecture.  In many cases, the holes at Crag Burn are penal in the typical Trent Jones way.  Bunkers penalize shots rather than challenging the good angles into greens and setting up strategic options.  However, what I see at Crag Burn a lot is a certain "line of charm" to be avoided.  On holes like 1, 2, 4, and 8, the golfer is goaded, either by the appearance of the flag on the horizon or the shape of the golf hole, into challenging hazards (varying between water, trees, and bunkers) and taking a direct line to the green.  In some cases, this challenge might pay off, but more often than not it can result it a high number.

Crag Burn is a penal golf course in many respects, but the course relies on deception and subtlety rather than straight brutality.  This elevates to a higher level than the average golf course and makes it worth playing and studying.

JNC,

I don't know if you read all of my hole descriptions, but I fully agree with everything you said in this post.  Though I only got to play it once, I thought Crag Burn was phenomenal.  I felt like I fell for every visual trick that RTJ provided.  He gives me a glimpse of the pin - I try to take the shortcut.  He makes the green look shallow - I believe him - (it isn't, it's deep).  He makes the green look shallow - now I think it's probably actually deep - it isnt, it's shallow. 

Despite all of the visual deception, the course still felt like penal architecture to me, but not traditional penal architecture.  I'm not sure exactly how to describe it.  The bunkering scheme is superb.  Bunkers don't just flank fairways, but they are placed to both tempt and penalize (for those that gave in to the temptation).

What is a "line of charm"?  Forgive my ignorance if this is a regularly used term.

I hope you continue to add insight to this thread as I finish the photo tour.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Front 9 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on May 29, 2011, 09:41:10 AM
Hole 10: Par 4, 410

Long, uphill and into the wind (and a bit boring), 10 was probably my least favorite hole on the course.  The tee shot is to a fairly wide fairway, with a single bunker on the left that must be missed. Similarly, the approach to the green is straightforward, with a long bunker protecting the left.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/10tee-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/10fairway.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/10green.jpg)



Hole 11: Par 4, 395 Yards.

A very fun hole with probably the most exciting green on the course.  Once again, the pin is in clear view to tempt the player to challenge the massive fairway bunker.  This one is carry-able (though not for me), but I am not sure there is great risk/reward there.  An approach from the bunker is difficult and even a shot that carries that bunker leaves an awkward yardage and angle.  Again, the prudent play is to resist temptation and take the safe line off the tee.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/11tee.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/11layup.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/11aggressive.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/11greenfromleft.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/11greenfrombehind.jpg)


Hole 12: Par 3, 170 Yards.

Another par 3 over water, but this one with a very interesting green (and heck, it's pretty).

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/12tee-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/12green.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/12frombehind.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/12from11.jpg)
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Front 12 Posted
Post by: JNC Lyon on May 29, 2011, 10:50:54 AM
Mark,

I agree, it's hard to describe the hazard placement at Crag Burn, but it usually falls someplace between penal and strategic.

Others might correct me here, but a "line of charm" is a visible direct line to the green that is "charming" to the eye.  Think of standing on the tee of a dogleg hole where the green is visible from the tee.  The golfer is drawn to go towards the flag, even if that line is irrational and fraught with danger.  There are many holes like this at Crag Burn, where you are drawn to the flag even though it might not be the prudent play. 

11 is one of those holes, where the huge bunker and fluttering flag on the horizon are just asking the player to take the direct line to the green.  Of course, this play is silly for all but the best of players, and it is usually bad news bears for balls that find the bunker (which looks the Scream from the air, if I remember correctly).  Of course, the green is wild and more receptive to short irons, so challenging the bunker, to some degree, is necessary.  Interestingly, with the exception of 4 at Spyglass Hill, Trent Jones is not known for his short par fours.  However, my two favorite holes at both Crag Burn and Seven Oaks (the latter due to extensive tree removal) are short par fours.  In this case, 3 and 11 are my two favorites at CB.

Unfortunately, 11 is sandwich between 10 and 12.  10 is a very dull hole, and I don't understand why the fairway bunker is not on the right hand side rather than the left.  This is the sort of bunker that I hate: anti-strategic and totally outside of the line of play.  In a string of good holes, 10 stands out as a dud.  12, on its own, is a good par three.  The green is interesting with one dominant slope from right to left.  This is the sort of green Trent Jones liked to build, and he constructed a few of them at Seven Oaks.  I have to say I am a fan.  However, 12's water theme is worn out at Crag Burn.  The three water par threes make the four one-shotters the weak link of the golf course.  I wish he had used more imagination on the 3s, as he did at Seven Oaks.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Front 12 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on May 29, 2011, 09:08:37 PM
Hole 13: Par 4, 450 Yards.

A downhill tee shot over a diagonal water hazard (shouldn't be in play).  There is a large mound on the right side of the fairway that if one can carry, he can take advantage of a forward kick from the downslope.  However, to find this slope, one must risk finding the bunkers on the right, which are jail.

The green is surrounded by bunkers left, right and long.  They appeared to be doing some work on the bunkers, but I have to say, the grassed in bunker made for a very, very cool visual.  I have never seen this used on a golf course, but I really like the look.

The green itself juts out at each of the four corners.  It reminded me of a four-leaf clover.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/13tee-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/13approach.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/13green-1.jpg)
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 13 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on May 29, 2011, 09:36:35 PM
Sorry for being AWOL for a few days. I'll pick up where I left off.

Hole 7
I think that this hole is better as no more than a mid-iron. The club recently added a deep tee that requires three-iron from even the best players. I feel that the green is not deep enough to hold that club, but evidently, the stronger players disagree. The green has a ridge running perpendicular to the green that separates it into left half/right half. It is a very puttable green that offers a fine opportunity for a one=putt, once you've reached it!

Hole 8
This par five has grown on me over the years. Deep rough right and a long bunker left shadow a wide fairway that begins to pinch around 300 yards off the tee. The hole moves gently left, then even more so around the green, although the green is never obscured. The putting surface itself is quite deep and set at an angle to the fairway. The fairway runs into the front right and the green moves diagonally left. It has some pitch and roll and has short, middle and long hole positions (2-3 in each third).

Hole 9
I don't think that this hole exists ANYWHERE else. The fairway runs straight out from the tee and is protected by bunkers left and right. It is only when you reach your tee shot that you realize the hole turns left, over the left-side bunkers, to a green located 165 yards away. It is possible to carry these parallel bunkers on the left, leaving a short iron in. The green is tiered from front to back and can be quite threatening.

I'll give some back nine info tomorrow.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 13 Posted
Post by: Dan Byrnes on May 29, 2011, 10:05:34 PM
Looks really nice.  Don't find myself in the area to often but may need a Western NY golf trip this summer.

Dan
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 13 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on May 30, 2011, 11:22:20 AM
Hole 14: Par 5, 505 Yards.

This hole is reachable in two, but only for a select few.  To be reached in two, the tee shot must be precisely placed between bunkers to the right and trees to the left and then will require a shot that is all carry over water.

The very long and somewhat narrow tee calls for accurate placement of the lay-up.  A front pin can really be approached from anywhere.  A pin on the left side of the green requires a player to flirt with the water on the layup to get the preferred angle.  A back right pin requires the player to flirt with the end of the fairway to find the preferred angle.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/14tee.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/14fromleft.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/14approach-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/14from250.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CragBurn-14greenfromright.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/14frombehind.jpg)


Hole 15: Par 4, 420 Yards.

The two hole foray back into parkland golf ends after the 15th.  Trees left and right (though there is more room than there appears) dictates decision-making from the tee.  The claustrophobic feeling off the tee, however, contrasts nicely with the open feeling on the approach.  The green open up from the right (the outside of the dogleg) and the very difficult back-left pin is really only accessible from the right.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CragBurn-15tee.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/15approach.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/15green.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/15greenfromright.jpg)
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 15 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on May 31, 2011, 11:10:41 AM
And on I go...

Hole 10
I understand the sense that 10 might be a bit boring after the doglegginess of many of the prior par four holes. 10 is straight away, long and neither narrow nor wide. It seems to be a getaway hole from the clubhouse, to start the back nine. There is no question in my mind that the green is intricate and interesting. It has some depth and a pair of rear wings for tucked hole locations. It rises gently (as does the hole) from front to back. I do agree that the look of the fairway leaves something to be desired. Was RTJ Senior a cerebral or artistic architect/designer? I'm not sure and this fairway certainly doesn't illustrate either one.

Hole 11
Nifty par four. Temptation is to go up the right side to shorten things; avoid the temptation! You want a full shot in that you can spin. A half-wedge into this green is no fun at all. Play your tee shot out to the left; former pro Lonnie Nielsen always aimed for the pro shop as his alignment point. Approach from there will be 7, 8 or 9 iron. Four separate quadrants  to the putting surface make approach putting a challenging task. Shots hit left of the green find water. Long and right find high grass.

Hole 12
Not identical to #5, but similar. Easily played from right to left. Recovery from bunker right of green faces water directly. I've done it with a five-iron on one-club day, so it can be done. The major difference 'twixt 5 and 12 is the absence of trees/presence of wind. The putting surface flows very nicely from front right to back left.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 15 Posted
Post by: JNC Lyon on May 31, 2011, 04:52:40 PM
Ron,

10 is not uninteresting because it is straight away.  It is uninteresting because of boring hazard placement.  If RTJ had placed a bunker on the right hand side that was well into the line of play, this hole would be solid.  Currently, an intricate green cannot make up for a hole that is, otherwise, vanilla bland.

I like the shape of the hole on 13, which makes this a compelling long par four.  Is the left side or right side the better play?  I think it depends on what type of second shot you want into the green.

14's tee shot is awkward, and it seems like a vehicle to get you from the tee to the compelling choice on the second.  The bunker on the right acts as nothing more than a saving device next to the boundary.  I think the hole would be more interesting if the fairway were widened to give more drives the choice of going after the green in two.  The second shot is very interesting, with the pond acting as a centerline hazard to create several choices.  The long left shot is very enticing after a big drive, but it also requires a great shot to be successful.  A layup right is safer, but it gets tougher as the player gets closer to the green.  Of course, the central bunker short of the green determines the optimum layup distance on the second shot.  Oh yeah, this green is really cool too.  14 has some playability issues, as the water is difficult to negotiate for a weaker player.  However, this isn't as much of a problem at a players' club.  This is one of my favorite holes at Crag Burn.

15 is a neat hole, and it grows on me with more plays.  The tee shot tempts the player to cut the dogleg left, but the prudent play is out to the right, where the green opens up to a long approach.  The greensite uses a typical Trent Jones tool: it angles around a bunker on the left, but it falls off to the right, meaning players cannot sling a hook in from the right.  I've seen him use this green at 16 at Seven Oaks and 6 at Palmetto Dunes.  The charming aspect of the tee shot and the cool green make this a solid hole, but that falloff at the front right of the green is frustrating.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 15 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on May 31, 2011, 07:51:02 PM
#10 is crying out for a principal's nose bunker pimple...to heck with the side bunkering on this hole; what it needs is what no hole on the course has-a centerline bunker.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 15 Posted
Post by: JNC Lyon on May 31, 2011, 07:57:21 PM
#10 is crying out for a principal's nose bunker pimple...to heck with the side bunkering on this hole; what it needs is what no hole on the course has-a centerline bunker.

Ron,

I like that for the 10th at Crag Burn.  I have a problem with that fairway bunker being well outside the line of play.  Centerline or not, the bunker needs to be directly in the line of play.

JNCL
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Hole 15 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on June 01, 2011, 07:17:58 PM
Hole 16: Par 5, 510 Yards.

This hole may be 510 on the card, but with some aggressive angles it plays a fair bit less.  Yet again, the pin is in full view from the tee and the player is tempted to try to carry the bunkers on the left for a chance to reach the green in two.  One must be very careful, however, as there are some 10-20 yards of rough over the bunkers before the fairway is reached.  The prudent play is again down the middle, as a conservative, well-struck tee shot leaves the green within reach for many.

The green is best approached from the right.  The player must choose to either lay-up to the small creek or challenge it.  Little advantage is gained by playing further up the left, short of the creek.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/16tee-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/16fromleft-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CragBurn-16fromright.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/16green-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CragBurn-16frombehind.jpg)



Hole 17: Par 3, 187 Yards.

A pretty darn tiny fade green given the length of the hole and how exposed it is to the wind.  With bunkers virtually everywhere, I bet few 3s are made on this hole.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/17tee-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/17green.jpg)



Hole 18: Par 4, 415 Yards.

Off the tee, it is not entirely clear where the fairway is.  The large tree serves somewhat as a centerline obstacle (a surprise to me) and the rough actually juts in from the right.

The approach to the peninsula 18th green felt kind of predictable to me, but still a reasonable finish to an excellent golf course.

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/18tee-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CragBurn-18fairway.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/18approach-1.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/18from10.jpg)
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on June 01, 2011, 11:49:47 PM
And on we go...the three-hole stretch from 13-15 features two half-par holes, followed by a solid two-shotter, under normal conditions.

Hole 13
Doesn't matter that your tee deck is elevated, this is one tough drive. You will find the fairway unless you do what most people do their first two times through: try to kill it far, which you won't do anyway, as no one can increase his/her distance with a power swing. Accept the fact that you'll be coming in from a nice fairway lie with a metal or a hybrid, to a green that offers no resistance up the fall line. As Mark shows, bunkers nearly surround the green left, rear and right. The only fairway bunker is on the high side (right) and is a fool's resting place. The play off the tee is toward the left. Mark, I have never seen those bunkers looking like that!!! I have no idea what is going on there...I'll try to find out.

By the way, this is an upper half-par hole...it plays to a 4.5, despite being a 4 on the card.

Hole 14
The first hole I ever saw at Crag Burn. Driving around aimlessly with a friend, we blew past the entrance and mistakenly went into the development. Came around a bend and saw ... that green!! More on that later.

14 offers a drive past a large stand of trees on the left. Get it up past them (don't pull or push) and you can go for the green on this par five. There is water in front of the green and you can lay up, but the green then becomes a wide, shallow affair, versus an angled, deep target when coming in with metal or hybrid. The play coming in, which I find really cool, is a fade for righties. I find this brilliant, as RTJ said to the average slicer, "Your time to be heroic." Aim at the left bunkers and slide it in. If you hit it straight, the sand isn't so bad; hit the fade and you are putting for eagle. The green has enough cant and waver to beseech a second or third reading o' the putt.

This one is a lower half-par, being a par 5 on the card but leaning toward a 4.5 hole, despite the water.

Hole 15
Solid par four. Goes about 420, but I still won't hit driver. Overcook it left and you hit the stand of arbor that came up on the previous hole. Hit it right and you have a good angle in ... from knee-high fescue. The play is up the gut and 3-metal does the trice. Once again, his Royal Trentness left the front of the green open for the runner or the running pitch. Sure, there is a hidden pin position (or perhaps, two) behind the bunker, but why mess with them? Bang i on the right portion of the green and trust your flat stick to do the work on a putting surface that slopes fairly heavily from front to back.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: Sean_A on June 02, 2011, 06:41:50 AM
Thanks for the tour Mark.  I am not quite sure what to make of the course (usually the case for me with RTJ).  It seems almost a dead split between stuff that looks good and stuff that looks bland.  Probably too much water for my tastes and probably too much pop-up bunker work.  I would rather he found a way to work better within a flat site rather than try to create a less flat look.  I wonder what Dye would have done with this site? 

JNC

I am no expert on lines of charm, but I thought they were not the direct route to the green.  In breaking up the direct route with menacing features then the lines of charm can be explored and exploited.  Does that sound right?

Ciao
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on June 02, 2011, 03:09:18 PM
Sean,

There is not much of the pop-up stuff that you describe anywhere beyond the perimeter. You are correct to question what Dye would have done...I wonder who else the committee considered back then, before selecting Trent.

What is missing from Crag Burn is the same thing that escaped Trent throughout his long career: wide fairways made necessary by strategic, centerline hazards. Trent seemed content to toss in parallel bunkers along the fairways and crinkle the short grass turf a bit (no cascading swales to be found at this course.)  What he also failed to do was make the course truly penal-there are no front-center of green bunkers, with the exception of the 11th hole, where you will have short iron in, and the 17th hole, a one-shotter.

You will certainly miss the rumpled, rambling fairways of a Pennard to hold your attention here. You won't have excessively uphill or downhill lies for your approach shots. Crag Burn is not an unfair course in any way. It is up front about its challenges and relies on zero trickery to achieve its purpose.

I can think of a few holes on which I might add some bunkering to the middle of the fairway...#2 and #3 could use a bit...#6 perhaps could avail itself of a fairway pot bunker, as the holes runs downhill from tee to target zone. #8 could also use one. On the back, #10 and #13 for sure. I would also take out the trees on #18 and put some grass or sand bunkers in that fairway. Too many fairways have zero threat up the gut, perhaps due to the fact that they are not extraordinarily wide. I'll chime in with my take on #16-18 soon.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: Bill Hyde on June 02, 2011, 04:34:20 PM
Sean, this course does not photograph well because it is relatively (almost totally) flat. I agree with you regarding the lack of bunkering that is more lay of the land. However, this was 1969. I think you have to keep that in context...I think this course was in many ways ahead of its time in how it embraced the natural state of the last 11 holes or so. Lots of gorgeous fescue, not much gimmickry, a straight ahead test of golf that was 7000 yards when that meant something. These photographs, while capturing the basic elements, do not get at the essence of this course or club which is pure golf. This is a course a better player enjoys playing every day. If I owned it and had ample budget, I would put 2 mil into the hands of a good architect to enhance the details of the course (new greens, bunker work, and some tree work). But in its current state, if you played there for a week, you would not tire of Crag Burn - it is a really great course to be a member of.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: JNC Lyon on June 02, 2011, 04:53:32 PM
Bill,

I think Crag Burn is much more than just a straight ahead test of golf.  If it was just that, I definitely would not give it the praise that I give it.  Crag Burn has a very strong routing that meanders between woodlands and open horse farm.  It has three interesting par fours on the short side (3, 9, and 11) that fit in well on any solid strategic course.  It is plenty of width, giving golfers ample options off the tee.  The bunkering fits together well, but it has a rugged appearance that is far preferable to a molded, sterile look of a modern Fazio bunker.  The hazard placement shuttles between penal and strategic, and varies between bunkers, water, trees, short grass, and long grass throughout the course.  The greens, as I expect, sometimes with disappointment, from RTJ are varied and definitely interesting.

I agree that it needs tree work in spots, and I believe the club has undertaken some in the past.  However, it would be a shame to re-bunker and change the greens at Crag Burn.  CB, more than anything, demonstrates that the big, bold style of the 1960s has some merit today, especially when Trent Jones give it more thought than his usual mail-in job.

Sean,

I would guess you are correct, and what you describe is exactly what many holes at Crag Burn do.  Trent Jones, when he did his best work, built hazards to break up the direct line.  The play is sometimes close to these hazards, and sometimes it is away from the hazards.  As for the "pop-up bunkering," there is some of that at Crag Burn, but it is not nearly as invasive as you might think.  The bunkering doesn't hug the land, but it does not look out of place either (except in a couple spots, like the tee shots on 10 and 14).  Overall, Trent Jones did a great job of creating an interesting, engaging golf course on a flat site.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: Bill Hyde on June 02, 2011, 05:36:06 PM
JNC, my use of "straight ahead" was a compliment on the lack of trickery, but I can see how it may have come off as a simple observation. I think I waxed a bit more poetically about the course in an earlier post. I love the place. In terms of my opinion that the course needs work, I feel that there are areas that could be improved - largely related to maintenance. The greens a pure poa and have been pretty good to pretty awful when I've played there recently. I think rebuilding with bent and restoring the contours and green area lost to 40 years of topdressing and mowing would be beneficial. I also feel the bunkers have lost the "look" they had when I was a member. A rebuild of the bunkers and restoration of the "wildness" of them would be an improvement I feel. I know they did some tree removal awhile back because I remember my father-in-law complaining about it, but I still think 4, 6 and 15 could use some work in that area. I also have always been bothered by the tree on 18...it seems out of character. This is not a deep-pocket club, so I cannot see this happening in the forseeable future, but they did put about a million into the range/short game area in the late 90s so who knows. Regardless, if they want guys to come in from out of town and stay in cabins, they need to dial up the "tweaking" a few notches. It's well-maintained...but it's not at the highest level.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: Sean_A on June 02, 2011, 06:03:22 PM
Bill & R.....

I don't mind flat sites in the least.  I actually think they are a great opportunity for an architect to show what he is all about.  My comments about the pop-up bunkers were mostly centered around the greens; perhaps RTJ went a bit overboard.  So far as the placement of bunkers around fairways, there is an argument to be made that on flat sites the placement of bunkers becomes paramount, in which case I would have thought centreline bunkers could serve the site better bith in terms of efficiency and getting in the golfer's face.  There seems to be an awful lot of sand employed...So far as the greens go, it seems like RTJ was embracing of the flat terrain.  I like the low profile look of the surfaces and I know more is going on than the photos show.

Ciao
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - Front 9 Posted
Post by: Mark Saltzman on June 08, 2011, 11:16:35 PM
Aah, Crag Burn.  Back in my UB days, Crag Burn was this legendary course that schmucks (oops - starving college students :) ) could only long to play.  (Just having fun!)

I'm really happy to see the pictures.  Any chance other Buffalo area courses could be added in the future?  I'd love to see Country Club of Buffalo and Park.  And Niagara Falls CC has a special place in my heart from my Porter Cup days (as a gallery member!).  It was the first course I ever saw that made me think "whoa - this is different than the munis I've been playing, and it's GOOOOD!"

Dan,

Here are a few photos of CCB, sorry I took a while to get around to putting them up.  Enjoy!
Hole 5

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-5.jpg)

Hole 6

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-6.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-62.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-63.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-64.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-65.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-66.jpg)

Hole 11

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-11.jpg)

Hole 12

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-12.jpg)

Hole 18

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-18.jpg)

(http://i1211.photobucket.com/albums/cc430/SaltyLaw/CCofBuffalo-182.jpg)



Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on June 09, 2011, 06:53:03 AM
I will see what I can do about a CCB thread...it might be tricky...NFCC I think I can do...Park is another good one.
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on October 07, 2011, 08:32:41 PM
Here are some photos I shot this week...an absolutely magical place in the Fall, with the colors, the heavy sun, etc.

http://s46.photobucket.com/albums/f140/buffalogolfer/Crag%20Burn%20October%202011/
Title: Re: Crag Burn GC Photo Tour (RTJ, 1969 - NY) - All 18 Posted
Post by: Ronald Montesano on November 25, 2011, 09:13:53 AM
Thanks to Mike V. at BlueGolf for putting together this course tour of Crag Burn.

http://course.bluegolf.com/bluegolf/course/course/cragburngcinc/aerial.htm

My #1 New Year's Resolution, already made, is to get KLynch out there...the dude lives ten minutes from the course and hasn't seen it. Not that I'm a member or anything, but I'll find a way!