Pacific Dunes provides a challenge from the first tee shot to your last approach to the 18th green. The course is set along the rugged coast of Oregon, in an area that still seems untapped and uncommercialized. Play from the appropriate tees as the course plays to every single inch of the 6633 yards off the black tees. The course has a number of great holes such as the 499-yard par-five 3rd with gorgeous views off the tee and on your approach to a well protected green. The tough 4th plays at 463 yards, with the entire right side lined by a cliff, while the green is protected by a huge bunker short and left. The lengthy hole usually plays down the prevailing wind, but we were not that fortunate, as a stiff breeze was in our face that day.
Good shot-making is required on every course at Bandon, and this course will regularly punish even the slightest of mishits that do not find the fairway. The greens are large, but do not hold the way most North American golfers would expect. They also aren't lush, but run pretty true, and putts can be rolled in from longer distances. The greens seem to skid and slide off the putter, as they are cut low and have less grass under the ball.
The fairways are cut very similarly resulting in consistent lies. Even though the area receives a lot of moisture, the fairways and greens are quite hard with few divots or ball marks to be found. One starts picking the ball off the tight lies or using low lofted clubs or putter around these greens.
I believe this is the toughest of the courses at Bandon, even though it's the shortest. The course is a test to walk, negotiate the wind and elements, and find opportunities to score well. If one is not careful, big numbers will surely creep in the scorecard.
Date: May 06, 2010