Saturday, March 23, 2019

Pinke's Planting

The trees just south of the 11th tee have been down for a couple of months now and the positive results of this project have become increasingly obvious.  Below is a picture taken from the 11th tee before the removal of the trees and then the next picture was taken just the other day.

Maybe even more impressive is the view from the south looking back toward the tee.  Here's a before and after picture from that viewpoint.  In these pictures you can really appreciate the size of the trees.

Now of course the benefits of this project are numerous.  For one thing nobody is ever going to have to clean up after those trees.  Falling debris is a year around occurrence with trees that size.  Secondly, the freshly paved road (which is coming very soon) will enjoy decades of strength and smoothness since it wont be compromised by roots heaving up or falling branches.  Thirdly, some very nice native oak trees were released by this project giving them a second chance to live a full life.  I guess you could say a lot of grass plants were also released by this project since there's no question the surrounding turf will greatly benefit from the increase in sunlight.  We must mention the issue of safety.  This project has now given everyone the opportunity to hit their desired shot shape from the tee.  That means it's a lot safer for those people on 16 green since far fewer errant tee shots will be in that vicinity.  Lastly, and most likely the best benefit of this project is simply better golf.  As I just mentioned now you can hit a fade or a draw from the tee which means you have a choice.  Whenever you stand on a tee and have choices or decisions to make, the tee shot all of the sudden is more interesting and that is just simply better golf.  Now I have to give credit where credit is due and Jeremy Pinke (our horticulturist) is certainly due credit and praise for his work on the planting which replaced those trees.
You can see that the planting effectively buffers the roadway and the new trees are a variety that will max out at a height of 30' so they will never cause problems similar to those we experienced from the big firs (i.e. shade, bad golf, road up-heaving).  This planting was quite a project in of itself.  First of all, the plants were donated by some neighbors with the stipulation that we cover the cost of removal and replacement.  The plants had outgrown their space.  Here's what they looked like before transplanting.
After most of my staff teamed up and hand dug around each of these plants, Jeremy then used a machine to load them onto our trailer. 
The large plants then had to be off loaded at the golf course, and then transported to the planting area on 11 tee.
The whole process took several days, and ironically it all came together on a couple snowy days in early March. I honestly had fears that this project would start at the same time the grass would start growing.  No one could have predicted that the course would be covered in snow on March 5th.  The timing just couldn't have been better and it was fun watching the crew work together to get this project done.  I provided the tools, but it was all coordinated by Jeremy and as always he never disappoints.  The planting looks really good, but you should know we're going to add several more plants to increase the overall density.  When you see Jeremy, give him an attaboy.  This was a tough project and he's pretty proud of how it's turned out so far.  

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Fixing the 5th - The Build

The project to return strategy and improve shot value to the 5th hole began with some selective tree removal.  Here's what the tee shot looked like before we started.

 Here's what it looks like today.  You can see that there is now a clear optional route over the oak tree if you so choose to take the risk.
The weather is finally cooperating and we're making some serious progress restoring the grounds where trees were removed.  We also have a good start on building the new teeing grounds.
Yes it looks like a mess right now but we've finished most of the underground work and now we can get it back to level.  Click on the image below to watch a video where I explain more details about the project.
Click on the image below to watch a flyover of the golf hole while we were working on it last Friday.  Keep in mind I'm an amateur drone pilot.  You'll notice in this video that I paused flying for a while after passing over the green.........I pretty much thought I crashed the drone for second.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Fixing the 5th


Remember that power pole near the championship tee on #5?  Well now you see it and now you don't.
With the pole now moved out of the way, we are proceeding with the Master Plan project to rebuild and lengthen the teeing ground on #5. The two aerial images below shows how that teeing ground looks now, and how it will look after.




There will also be some changes in the fairway. Below are a couple of aerial images which show the before and after look of the fairway area.

When this hole was changed to a dogleg back in the early 70's, the fir trees were about 50 feet shorter than they are now.  Obviously the aggressive line over the left edge of the fairway was part of the original intent so this project will restore that fun risk-reward opportunity.  So yes we are fixing the 5th hole and it's going to once again be one of the best short par 4's anywhere. This project will begin in the middle of January 2019.  For a full detailed description of the project, please watch this video.