Review for Pasatiempo

Reviewer Score:


Perhaps the most underrated classic course in the USA.

Set upon a spectacular and rollicking piece of land it is unusual in a number of ways. Alister Mackenzie's home is of course on the 6th hole, nearer the green, a nondescript domicile that now bears a plaque to go with the chickenwire fence.

One can see how much golf in USA has changed since the opening of this course. 6, 7, & 8 suffer from the old time Old Course-inspired concept of shared fairways being separated for legal purposes. The 7th is all too narrow, but the USA being a suit happy locale, the mindless planting of now massive trees was a necessity as well as the unsightly driving range fence on the 6th.

Far fewer golfers played in the 1920's than do today, in fact my first visit to Pasatiempo in the mid-1970's found the seventh choked by the trees that were then in1970's style full out bush style with nary a trim. Bottom boughs brushed the ground and it was terribly narrow with said boughs nearly touching the fairway edges. The previous par 5 6th still is narrow as well, but I do have a tendency to point out negatives - the things that keep golf courses short of perfection, but one must imagine how it once was rather than how it is now. Golf has changed and this section was poorly planned without any anticipation of how the game would be played nearly 100 years on.

Five wonderful Par 3's on property range from borderline unreachable 3rd set on the side of a hill to a near flip-wedge at the 15th. Some reviewers will criticize the Par 3 18th as it makes for an unconventional finisher, but it is preferable to todays preferred 900 yard one Par five with water, bunkers trees and stone outcroppings of misery.

Pasatiempo possesses simply great green complexes and ground contours with overall brilliant use of a great piece of land.

I'll add only the green of the lovely 4th, Par 4 ad the highest recommendation to go play this underrated course.

Date: May 03, 2022

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