News:

This discussion group is best enjoyed using Google Chrome, Firefox or Safari.


Ally Mcintosh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #50 on: January 14, 2017, 10:44:13 AM »
We ended up with 4 out of the 9 holes on Carne Kilmore being bunkerless although 2 of them have natural sand scars designated as through the green.


Because of the violence of the topography, Carne is one course that could probably get by with having zero man-made bunkers in its entire 27. It's harder with flatter courses as you haven't got the vertical contrast as another variable to produce variety.


In the entirely new bunker scheme we are doing at Strandhill, there will be only one completely bunkerless hole (the par 3 fourteenth) but I can honestly say this is the first time I've thought about that so it certainly wasn't forced for show.

Michael Wolf

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #51 on: January 14, 2017, 04:23:15 PM »
Slightly OT, but the course I grew up caddying on had one hole with no bunkers, and I ?somewhat? remember that it was attributed to a tradition whereby architects tracing a direct professional line back to Scotland would leave a hole with zero bunkers as a tribute to ??? Have noticed many courses (14th Augusta. etc) in subsequent years with exactly one bunker less hole. Any feedback on anything like this?

Garland Bayley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #52 on: April 20, 2019, 12:40:49 AM »
Bill Diddel had a period of his career when he was dedicated to building bunkerless courses. If I remember correctly, he created his home course with no bunkers. Does it have bunkers now? Yes! His mentoree Pete Dye came in after his death and rebuilt the course with many bunkers.

One reason it may be hard to find great courses without bunkers is that every green chairman in the world can't leave good enough alone, and commence adding bunkers to courses. ;)

I spent a lot of time on a Bill Diddel 9-holer with no bunkers in my youth. When I look at with Google Earth, bunkers have magically appeared on the course in the years since I have been there.
"I enjoy a course where the challenges are contained WITHIN it, and recovery is part of the game  not a course where the challenge is to stay ON it." Jeff Warne

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #53 on: April 20, 2019, 09:16:00 AM »
I see I'm back to this thread like a moth to a flame, my third go over several years . . . but at least I'm somewhat logically consistent.


We are working on two projects currently that will be bunker-minimal if not bunkerless.


The current one is Memorial Park in Houston.  When Brooks Koepka signed on as the consultant, one of my first questions to him was whether he would mind if we built a course with few or no bunkers, and he didn't have a problem with the idea, saying bunkers are rarely a factor in his strategizing.  The TOUR is on board with the idea, because it minimizes clean-up issues during rain delays.  Also:  bunkers slow down play for municipal golfers, and add to maintenance costs. 


So, we've been using the ravines that are on-site, new ravines that we've added, the large irrigation pond, and the trees to challenge players, and keeping bunkers to a minimum.  There will be nine bunkers on the back nine, and none at all on holes 13, 15, 16 or 17.  There may be a few more on the front nine, but we'll be comfortably under 25 for the whole course.


The other project where I have considered zero bunkers is in northern California.  That property is blessed with oaks, vineyards, rock outcroppings, and a stream that comes into play on seven holes, plus the most dramatic elevation changes of anywhere I've worked.  I would be happy to build it without any bunkers, except that there are restrictions on what I can and can't do in the buffer areas around the streams, and I believe that an occasional bunker in those areas would be better than a lot of grass with restrictions on when it can be mowed, especially right next to the greens.  So my bunkerless course may have to wait a bit longer, but I'm trending in the right direction.


P.S.  Technically, Tara Iti is bunkerless, but there sure is a lot of sand in play.

Eric Smith

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #54 on: April 20, 2019, 10:41:52 AM »
Tom,


That California site sounds wonderful and from the few photos youíve shown us on Instagram I imagine it will turn out just the way it needs to sand bunkers or otherwise. I know youíre keen on Hollinwell do the elevation changes in your new routing have any similar traits? I think Hollinwell is so good because it is so blessed with those dramatic elevation changes yet itís such a wonderful walk.

Daryl David

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #55 on: April 20, 2019, 11:25:07 AM »
The Farm (new par 3 course at the Hills in NZ) designed by Darius Oliver has no bunkers. Kind of a tip of the cap to next door neighbor Arrowtown. It really works there given the flow of the land and a stream that runs rampant through the course. Just like Arrowtown, you never miss the bunkers or even realize they are absent. Come to think of it, the pictures of Tomís site in Northern CA looks a lot like the area around Arrowtown.

Mark_Fine

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #56 on: April 22, 2019, 09:37:12 AM »
I had a "bunkerless" renovation all set to go in Hilton Head but there was unfortunately a change of plans by management and the project ended up being awarded to Rees Jones  :(   It happens and is hard to compete with the big names sometimes, but it would have been fun to do and the course would have really stood out as something unique on the island.  I think the clientel that frequents that course would have loved it.  We planned to use several natural sandy waste areas but nothing that would be considered a formal bunker.  I have no idea what Rees will do with the golf course.  Maybe he will take our idea and run with it but I highly doubt it, though I have have my ideas/plans used by others before  ::) .  Honestly I don't care as long as the project turns out ok. 

Jim Nugent

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #57 on: April 22, 2019, 01:36:32 PM »
ANGC, when it opened, was pretty close.  Only 22 bunkers.  At least 8 of them not in play for good golfers.  4 holes entirely bunker-free: 7, 11, 15 and 17. 

It looks to me like the club could remove some current bunkers, without making the course easier or changing strategy.  e.g. take out the front bunker on 12 and you probably make the hole harder.  Same with the bunker to the left of the green on 16.  The rear bunker on 11 looks mostly out of play; same with the fairway bunker on 10. 

I'm guessing ANGC could use slopes and mounds in place of some other bunkers, that would create as many problems for errant shots as sand traps do now.   



Thomas Dai

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #58 on: April 22, 2019, 01:44:00 PM »
It looks to me like the club could remove some current bunkers, without making the course easier or changing strategy.  e.g. take out the front bunker on 12 and you probably make the hole harder.  Same with the bunker to the left of the green on 16.  The rear bunker on 11 looks mostly out of play; same with the fairway bunker on 10. 

I'm guessing ANGC could use slopes and mounds in place of some other bunkers, that would create as many problems for errant shots as sand traps do now.   


Interesting.
Atb

Mark_Fine

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #59 on: April 22, 2019, 06:47:09 PM »
I will go out on a limb (but a very sturdy one I think) and say that most golf courses would benefit from less bunkering.  That doesn't mean by any means that there should be none.  However, most courses have too many and a good number that are superfluous and/or just there to further penalize an already poor shot.  Good players don't even see most of these and they just impact the higher handicapper.  Furthermore, many are there because a lot of architects just love to build bunkers.  Some have built their reputation on them. 

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #60 on: April 22, 2019, 07:33:44 PM »
a lot of architects just love to build bunkers.  Some have built their reputation on them.


Who would you put on that list?


The only one who really comes to mind for me is Steve Smyers, and even then, Steveís rep is more about building challenging courses than it is about all the bunkers.

Mark_Fine

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #61 on: April 22, 2019, 07:57:30 PM »
Tom,
LOL - That is exactly who I was thinking about - Steven Smyers.  He is a great guy and I have enjoyed our discussions together but I tend to feel that sometimes he builds too many unnecessary bunkers.  Yes he designs challenging courses, but for most golfers, his bunkering can be far too penal (plus they are a maintenance nightmare). 

Duncan Cheslett

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #62 on: April 26, 2019, 11:48:31 PM »
I just chanced upon this round-up of bunkerless golf courses in the UK by the excellent Ed Battye:


https://www.golfempire.co.uk/golf-course-reviews/top/top-bunkerless-great-britain.htm

Sam Krume

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #63 on: April 27, 2019, 04:08:41 AM »
If a course could ever do with less bunkers, it is the revamped Stoke Park(Poges). For the life of me I can not understand why they have done what they have done. To my eye it's an absolute mess. From what I understand, the renovations were carried out in house....

Jeff Schley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #64 on: April 27, 2019, 05:35:59 AM »
I like the idea of having more grass bunkers which are much cheaper to maintain. I'm not talking about 12 inch high grass, just 3-4 inches perhaps, which would provide variety in lies depending on how you rolled or flew your ball in there. Don't need them deep either, but subtle depressions. Most amateurs, myself included, struggle with shots out of deeper rough so while penal it would speed up rounds as you don't have to rake and the super doesn't have to maintain it nearly as much time wise. Just don't make the grass too long where the ball disappears.
"To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice your gifts."
- Steve Prefontaine

Mark_Fine

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Great Without Bunkers?
« Reply #65 on: April 27, 2019, 07:58:07 AM »
Jeff,
I also like the idea of using more grass hollows.  I am redoing the bunkering on two municipal courses right now and part of the plan is to incorporate more grass hollows and closely mown areas around some of the greens (instead of just bunkers).  Having a sand bunker short right on almost every hole is just crazy as 60% of golf shots are missed short right.  All you are doing is penalizing the weaker golfer.  Variety is so important as it adds to the enjoyment of the game.  Less bunkering can also reduce maintenance costs.   

Tags:
Tags:

An Error Has Occurred!

Call to undefined function theme_linktree()
Back