Interlachen was built in 1909 from three parcels of farmland and the original architect was Willie Watson. The legendary architect Donald Ross updated Watson’s design only ten years after the course was opened. Robert Trent Jones was involved in further modifications in 1960 and Geoffrey Cornish made further changes to the layout in the 1980s.
Interlachen Country Club is located in the Minneapolis suburb of Edina and this hallowed course is routed across rolling ground with wide, tree lined fairways and water coming into play at six holes. The greens are relatively small and very fast and no fewer than ten of Interlachen’s greens are elevated. The short par fours on the outward half require precision if a score is to be made on the front nine. The back nine has a number of holes with doglegged fairways. The signature hole is the 530-yard par five 9th featuring a dogleg right fairway and a lake on the inside of the bend beside the green. During the 1930 US Open here, Bobby Jones skimmed his ball over the water to make a birdie which went a long way to ensuring he achieved the "Grand Slam".
In addition to the 1930 US Open, Interlachen has hosted many top competitions over the years, including the Solheim Cup in 2002 and the 2008 US Women’s Open. According to the brilliant New World Atlas of Golf, Interlachen “is blessed with an abundance and wide variety of trees, calling for the unique ‘leafie’ rule that enchanted players from the UK in a 1980 re-creation of the 1930 Open.” We’d love to know more about this rule so if anybody can throw any light on the subject we’ll be thrilled to hear from you.
I had the wonderful privilege of playing Interlachen as part of a charity fund raiser. The course and club house just ooze with history. From the Bobby Jones plaque on the course where he hit his famous skip shot to the tournament trophies in the grand, historic, clubhouse. Excellent course layout as you would expect. So many large fairway sand traps made my score very high but did not take away from such a wonderful playing experience. A golf lifetime highlight.
Interlachen, in the suburb of Edina, is my favorite course in Minnesota, but I don’t get to play here as often as I would like. Although I know several members, invitations are rare. The setting is very serene; beautiful rolling hills, lovely lakes and ponds, many of which are framed by lush weeping willows. It’s a Donald Ross design and by far one of his better ones, with plenty of elevation changes and lots of water that comes into play.
In 1930, Interlachen hosted a U.S. Open, the third of Bobby Jones’ grand-slam victories that year, when he skipped his ball over the water onto the 18th green for a spectacular finish. A few months later, he won the U.S. Amateur at Merion to win an unprecedented grand slam. Larry Berle