Monday, February 20, 2006
7068 yds, Par 72, Slope 128, by William Bell, Re-fit by Jack Snyder.
"Papghetto" the same way as Encanto is "Enchanto". But we felt that the course was in very playable shape. Definitely, a solid "3". Sure it could have been in better shape and it seems kind of long-in-the-tooth, but the layout is very fine; the scenery, beautiful, even if not breath-taking; and the golf itself is very challenging. This is definitely the most difficult of the Phoenix Munis, although I can easily believe that Cave Creek is the most popular.
I shot a 46-43=89; Mr. Science a 43-42=85. If I could putt, I would've shot low-80s . . . part of that was the fair-&-challenging greens, but most of it is I have just lost my touch (or my concentration (or my courage)) on short ones for par. I made some heroic lag putts that left me with tap-ins, but my short game and putting otherwise is killing me. The course is long-and-tough, but also sort-of wide open, so that there is usually a chance for a recovery shot, long as you don't mind clanging your club off a rock or two.
The way the holes look from the tee is really beautiful: narrow fairways with wide shouldered, close-cut dormant bermuda rough, surrounded by red-rock hills and old, old trees that seem to come into play, often. Hardly a flat-lie to be found, either.
Note that the first two holes are on the AZCentral Best 18 holes in Phoenix
I'd have to play it again to get a sense of the course, I mean, the strategy of the course . . . the only thing that comes to mind now is how hard the last 3 holes were, the #2, #8, & #4 handicap holes, 443 par 4, 227 par 3, & 443 par 4. I was striking the ball fairly well, and playing smart, but just not able to get it in the hole . . . by the time we finished of course, it was a 5 hour round, and my attention span tends to wander after that long, especially walking.
The only bloggable thing that happened out of the ordinary was on #9, a par 5 with water running down most of the right side. Our playing companion, Rasputin, the mad duffer, for whom golf seems to aggravate his ADHD, had kind of a difficult shot out of the trees from behind the water, and when he hit is ball, the ball DID go over the water into the next copse, but his 7 iron snapped off at the kick point and the club head went into the water hazard, well out of reach. "These are Ping Eye 2 clubs!" he wailed, "a pro told me they were worth $3000! What should I do? Should I go in there after it?" And so on, for the next 9 holes, "What do you think I should do? Give me your advice! Can I tip the greenskeeper? Will they let me dive for it?"
"Hey man!" I finally said, "Just look on EBAY for a new 7 iron . . . "