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Ben Sims

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #50 on: November 11, 2022, 12:59:00 PM »
It has been eleven years this week since my last trip to Bandon. The only thing that has demonstrably changed in that time is the construction and opening of Sheep Ranch.


Bandon Dunes would probably look a bit different to you today than it did 11 years ago.  There's been a ton of gorse removal, the remaining bunkers have been completely reworked and a number have been removed or moved.  The 2nd hole has a completely different look, with the grass hillside on the left replaced by a gaping bunker.  6 looks very different with a catch bunker on the left as opposed to the grass runway to the cliff. 8 has a very different bunker scheme, with the half horseshoe pretty much replaced by a center line bunker right in the landing zone and the DZ bunkers on 9 have been reworked.  One of the left side bunkers on 11 was removed, making a drive at the green much more of an option.  The bunkers on the right side of 14 were enlarged creating more danger on that side.  The DA at 15 was moved to the right and is smaller, removing perhaps the most iconic bunker on the course.  The fairway bunker on 17 was filled in.  All of these changes were made to soften the course a bit, and included the removal of the left side bumps on 15 which used to carom certain shots onto the green.  Today, the newer grass on that side acts like a speed slot which sends any shot off the green on the left into the hazard behind


Sorry Sven, while I acknowledge the point, Iíll stand by what I said. I would expect incremental changes and steady marginal gains to occur. Is that enough to demonstrably change the course as it compares to its teammates? Iíd argue not. It has long been my contention that BD is the most conventional course at the resort and for that reason it deserves attention but not devotion. I need to see if SR changes that feeling.

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +0/-1
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #51 on: November 11, 2022, 01:11:44 PM »

I don't know what the opening holes were supposed to be like, before they acquired the additional land. It would be interesting to see an original routing.

I'd love to know more about what some think makes them lesser holes. Building into and along a rise must be challenging, especially when you need to use the land. A similar course that comes to mind is the OG at Arcadia Bluffs. Uphill par five (par four at Bandon Dunes) followed by a downhill par three (uphill par three at Bandon Dunes.) I'll rank the BD opening duo over the AB pair, but each served a purpose.




I don't know how the routing for all of the front nine worked, but 1-2-3 at Bandon Dunes were the original routing Bruce Hepner and I saw when I first went out there in 1995 or 96.  After that it went into ten-foot-tall gorse and it was hard to understand.


Also, comparing those two holes to two poor holes on the overrated Arcadia Bluffs, is a sign of your argument's weakness, not strength.


I've always thought #1 was okay, although the uphill approach is not ideal.  I've always thought #2 was one of the worst holes at the resort, although I have not seen the newest iteration.  I cannot think of an uphill par-3 like that on any links course in the UK that I like.  I guess the 12th at Ballybunion is uphill, but it's also much scarier, and much closer to the ocean.

John Kavanaugh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #52 on: November 11, 2022, 01:32:36 PM »
I've always enjoyed the 17th at BD. Is it still universally hated in the community of experts? If so, why?

Joe Hancock

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #53 on: November 11, 2022, 01:59:19 PM »
I've always thought #1 was okay, although the uphill approach is not ideal. 


Are we talking about Friars Head? Just kidding, but Iíve heard very few complain about it
" What the hell is the point of architecture and excellence in design if a "clever" set up trumps it all?" Peter Pallotta, June 21, 2016

"People aren't picking a side of the fairway off a tee because of a randomly internally contoured green ."  jeffwarne, February 24, 2017

Sven Nilsen

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #54 on: November 11, 2022, 02:25:49 PM »
It has been eleven years this week since my last trip to Bandon. The only thing that has demonstrably changed in that time is the construction and opening of Sheep Ranch.


Bandon Dunes would probably look a bit different to you today than it did 11 years ago.  There's been a ton of gorse removal, the remaining bunkers have been completely reworked and a number have been removed or moved.  The 2nd hole has a completely different look, with the grass hillside on the left replaced by a gaping bunker.  6 looks very different with a catch bunker on the left as opposed to the grass runway to the cliff. 8 has a very different bunker scheme, with the half horseshoe pretty much replaced by a center line bunker right in the landing zone and the DZ bunkers on 9 have been reworked.  One of the left side bunkers on 11 was removed, making a drive at the green much more of an option.  The bunkers on the right side of 14 were enlarged creating more danger on that side.  The DA at 15 was moved to the right and is smaller, removing perhaps the most iconic bunker on the course.  The fairway bunker on 17 was filled in.  All of these changes were made to soften the course a bit, and included the removal of the left side bumps on 15 which used to carom certain shots onto the green.  Today, the newer grass on that side acts like a speed slot which sends any shot off the green on the left into the hazard behind


Sorry Sven, while I acknowledge the point, Iíll stand by what I said. I would expect incremental changes and steady marginal gains to occur. Is that enough to demonstrably change the course as it compares to its teammates? Iíd argue not. It has long been my contention that BD is the most conventional course at the resort and for that reason it deserves attention but not devotion. I need to see if SR changes that feeling.


Ben:


All I was saying is that the course is different than it was 11 years ago.  There was no comment in my statement about whether or not the changes were for the better (other than perhaps what I said about 15).  You'll have to make that call for yourself when you get back here.


Not sure what exactly you mean by conventional.  There are a ton of guests who note how comfortable they feel playing Trails because it reminds them of other courses they've played.  Perhaps Trails is the most conventional in that sense.


There was an intentional effort made for the first course to make it "approachable."  As Tom and others have pointed out, Mr. Keiser has a very conservative approach to his business.  BD was meant to be the vanilla to the other flavors that would come later. 


Sven
"As much as we have learned about the history of golf architecture in the last ten plus years, I'm convinced we have only scratched the surface."  A GCA Poster

"There's the golf hole; play it any way you please." Donald Ross

John Kavanaugh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #55 on: November 11, 2022, 03:08:15 PM »
I noticed the building on one isnít in play as I remembered. What changed?

Peter Flory

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #56 on: November 11, 2022, 04:22:44 PM »
I've always enjoyed the 17th at BD. Is it still universally hated in the community of experts? If so, why?


I know some expert types who really like the hole and think of it as one of the better ones on the course.  It always seemed a bit out of place to me, because of the forced carry over the hazard that was tight to the green.  It just didn't feel as linksy as the rest.  I guess I also don't like the layup to a blind hazard with a catch bunker that saves you from that hazard.  I played it in a competition once and just did the bomb and gouge way to the left off the tee and it seemed like I was breaking the hole a bit.

John Kavanaugh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #57 on: November 11, 2022, 04:28:41 PM »
I played it in a competition once and just did the bomb and gouge way to the left off the tee and it seemed like I was breaking the hole a bit.


Sweet. Like at St. Andrews.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2022, 04:31:29 PM by John Kavanaugh »

Ira Fishman

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #58 on: November 11, 2022, 04:44:08 PM »
The OP seemed focused on whether BD is overrated relative to all courses, not just those at the resort. I made my view known in a prior post, but the subsequent posts led me to the question: is there another course ranked in the Top 50 in the US for which posters would identify so many so-so holes?


And as previously stated, I think it is a very good course.


Ira

Philip Caccamise

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #59 on: November 11, 2022, 04:54:25 PM »
I don't know if Bandon Dunes is overrated.


Does the frequently changing weather one might catch in Bandon on that day have an impact on people's opinion of a course? My one play of BD was in the worst weather conditions I've ever played in- and I grew up in the Northeast. How can I reasonably make an assessment off that play, as compared to PD or BT or anywhere else? I suspect that is the case for a lot of the resort-specific rankings by people.

JLahrman

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #60 on: November 11, 2022, 05:43:04 PM »
The OP seemed focused on whether BD is overrated relative to all courses, not just those at the resort. I made my view known in a prior post, but the subsequent posts led me to the question: is there another course ranked in the Top 50 in the US for which posters would identify so many so-so holes?

Ira


Honestly, on this website Pebble Beach might be nominated.

Garland Bayley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #61 on: November 12, 2022, 12:50:29 AM »
I noticed the building on one isnít in play as I remembered. What changed?

You got older, thereby effectively putting more things out of play due to your short knocking.
"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

Jeff Schley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #62 on: November 12, 2022, 03:01:31 AM »
The OP seemed focused on whether BD is overrated relative to all courses, not just those at the resort. I made my view known in a prior post, but the subsequent posts led me to the question: is there another course ranked in the Top 50 in the US for which posters would identify so many so-so holes?

Ira


Honestly, on this website Pebble Beach might be nominated.
Well the inland holes do leave much to be desired compared to the best in world stretches along the coast. But taken as a whole, the highs are so incredibly good it raises it to top 10 which I agree with.  The real GCA aspect of Pebble the public doesn't realize is the tiny greens really make it unique and add to the difficulty as we see each 10 years during the US Open.
"To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice your gifts."
- Steve Prefontaine

William_G

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #63 on: November 12, 2022, 08:28:17 AM »
classic dumb topic
thank you to Sven and TD for chiming in
folks are now booking tee times for 2024 if they can ::)
It's all about the golf!

John Kavanaugh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #64 on: November 12, 2022, 08:52:02 AM »
I noticed the building on one isnít in play as I remembered. What changed?

You got older, thereby effectively putting more things out of play due to your short knocking.


I could hit a 220 yd straight ball my entire life. I finally got smart enough to embrace it.

Jeff Schley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #65 on: November 12, 2022, 09:43:28 AM »
classic dumb topic
thank you to Sven and TD for chiming in
folks are now booking tee times for 2024 if they can ::)
I don't know the footprint of how much land the Keiser's own there.  Is there room for another course?  I assume there is. In the plan?
"To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice your gifts."
- Steve Prefontaine

Sven Nilsen

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #66 on: November 12, 2022, 12:35:27 PM »
classic dumb topic
thank you to Sven and TD for chiming in
folks are now booking tee times for 2024 if they can ::)
I don't know the footprint of how much land the Keiser's own there.  Is there room for another course?  I assume there is. In the plan?


There's another par 3 course planned for the land to the west of the first three holes at Trails and New River Dunes will be a DM Kidd project.  That land is a good bit south of the town of Bandon and not on what you would consider the resort property.  From all accounts, those are it for future Bandon course projects.
"As much as we have learned about the history of golf architecture in the last ten plus years, I'm convinced we have only scratched the surface."  A GCA Poster

"There's the golf hole; play it any way you please." Donald Ross

Ben Sims

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #67 on: November 12, 2022, 02:30:44 PM »
Goodness gracious, Bandon fans remind me of Bama fans. Relax, itís still the GOAT golf resort. No one, not St Andrews, Pinehurst, or anywhere else new or old has the quality of courses across the board that Bandon has in one geographic spot under one ownership roof. Itís simply a breathtakingly impressive project after all these years.

The OG course at Bandon being overrated in some peopleís minds doesnít mean itís dog food. Itís clearly a very good golf course.

JohnVDB

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #68 on: November 12, 2022, 08:03:43 PM »
I first went to Bandon in 1998. The Pacific Coast Am was at Eugene CC and they bused the officials all down to play BD. We couldnít play #1 as it had just been seeded. We then played 2&3 and our caddie, who had been driven around the course that morning, tried to take us to #9 next.  Fortunately they he given us a paper map and we found our way to 4.  The back 9 had been built first and was more complete. When we played 2, the only tees were the ones to the right of the first green.


I went back that October to do the USGA Course Rating and got to play it two more times.  They had built the lower tees on 2.  I always liked the upper tees more, although Iíd have to say it is a pretty unique hole from down below.


Between then and 2011, I went back many times. It is interesting to see that they have opened up the course more since then as the difference between 1998 and 2011 in terms of playability was huge. Holes like 6 were unplayable if you missed the green back then.


The only hole Iíve never been a fan of is 15 as I think that it required a high soft landing target oriented shot which was almost impossible to get to hold the green when it was downwind and the ball would run over the green and into the penalty area back left too easily.


Iím Going back in March for the first time since 2011 so Iím interested to see how it and all the other courses have evolved.


I donít think BD is overrated. I think Trails is underrated but the others are about right.  It is my favorite with Pacific being next and OM and BD being pretty equal although Iíve only played Om a couple of times. Trail suffers in the ratings because it isnít on the coast so you donít have the dramatic holes like 16 on BD or 4 on PD.


Kevin Pallier

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #69 on: November 13, 2022, 03:23:47 AM »
The OP seemed focused on whether BD is overrated relative to all courses, not just those at the resort. I made my view known in a prior post, but the subsequent posts led me to the question: is there another course ranked in the Top 50 in the US for which posters would identify so many so-so holes?


Ira


That's my point - I think BD is a bit of a sacred cow in the world of golf.


It debuted in US Golf Magazine World Top100 back in 1999 at 80 and had a few years in the 50-60 range before dropping back to 80 in the most recent results.


Streamsong has opened Blue, Red, Black and none of them have cracked that Top100. I'd argue all 3 are better than BD but it consistently ranks ahead of them.


Both US Golf Digest & Golf Magazine have had BD imbedded inside their respective US Top 50's ever since it opened. Digest has pretty much solidified it inside it's Top40.



IMO it is a good course not a great course hence my Qs.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2022, 03:25:37 AM by Kevin Pallier »

Ira Fishman

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #70 on: November 13, 2022, 07:34:20 AM »
Kevin,


In my book, SS Blue is seriously underrated period. The 12-18 stretch is world class, and number 8 is a brilliant hole. The two ďweakestĒ holesó10 and 11Ėare still very solid. So yes, I think BD is overrated relative to SS Blue. I also think the same about SS Red which has two great stretches of holes: 2-7 and 11-16. I am not a fan of 8-10 although I know many people here disagree with me especially about number 8. BD is a better course than SS Black. I thought that the routing of Black to be quite good especially the variety of holes, but the overwhelming bunkering and size of the greens (especially on the front) detracted from the overall quality.


Your questions strike me as on point  although I am in the camp that rankings are subjective best serving for providing over drinks conversation and of course threads on here. And so as you note, BD is a very good course regardless of its place in the rankings.


Ira






« Last Edit: November 13, 2022, 01:42:46 PM by Ira Fishman »

MCirba

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #71 on: November 13, 2022, 01:02:16 PM »
Seems as good a place as any to list my order of favorites based on respective architecture.   I would first point out that all five courses are "Great", so this is really splitting hairs between them, with a slight drop off for the last, in my opinion.


Old Macdonald
Pacific Dunes
Bandon Trails
Sheep Ranch
Bandon Dunes
"Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent" - Calvin Coolidge

https://cobbscreek.org/

John Kavanaugh

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #72 on: November 13, 2022, 02:14:20 PM »
NO

Terry Lavin

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Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #73 on: November 13, 2022, 04:03:56 PM »
NO


Iíll concur in this wise manís judgment.
Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people.  H.L. Mencken

Tommy Williamsen

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Is Bandon Dunes overrated?
« Reply #74 on: November 13, 2022, 06:17:29 PM »
Not a knock against any of the courses, but if I were to return, I might spend the bulk of my time playing Pacific Dunes and trails. I enjoyed them the most.
Where there is no love, put love; there you will find love.
St. John of the Cross

"Deep within your soul-space is a magnificent cathedral where you are sweet beyond telling." Rumi

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