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Saturday, January 01, 2011


Superstition Mountain - Prospector course

Mr Science reports on a Member for a Day promotion . . .
Lucky Dog . . . .
I birdied #2, and parred 9 and 18.  In between, occasional streaks of doubles and triples that I attribute to lack of playing. 

I thought I knew this course pretty well, having walked it with the pros about a dozen times, but I saw places yesterday that I had never seen before.

It never hit me so much when I was just scoring, but pretty much every green is elevated, and has HUGE bunkers in the front. 
(Like Jones courses or the Tonto Verde Course or Tatum Ranch).  Which makes every $%^# approach shot uphill, and all carry.  And we played from the blue tees, 6700 yards, significantly beyond my comfort zone.  I was hitting a lot of 3-woods and 7-woods to the par 4's, and ending up in places where up-and-down was no more than a fantasy. (He MUST be rusty . . . he hits 3 & 7 woods like I hit a 9iron, when he’s in practice). The fairways are generally pretty wide, though, despite the visual intimidation from the tees.  I think Gary Nicklaus must be related to Gary Panks. (The Estrella Mountain course was a Jackie Nicklaus course, I think, but similarly difficile, if you see what I mean … I ‘d tho’t of the greens as Heckenkeperian rather than Panksian, but after a certain degree of difficulty, it can be hard to say, exactly).

And that "drivable par 4", the 14th?  It's 325 yards, but it's almost a 200 yard forced carry to the fairway!!!  This is not an easy hole.  I had to save 7 there by 3-putting from 12 feet. 

They're having a sale on memberships:  $15,000 initiation fee, and $635 a month dues.  Probably a sale on the houses in the neighborhood, too.  I'm sure some of them that could have gone for $1M a few years ago could be had today for half that.  They weren't empty, though.  I played with 3 Canadians who spend their winters in a trailer park in Mesa, and they said a lot of the houses along the fairways at Gold Canyon looked abandoned. 

The place oozes class, though.  The clubhouse, the staff, the course conditions, are all outstanding.  F A S T greens.  No GPS, but the scorecard is marked with the day's pin positions (+9, -3 ...).  Clearly a 1 on our scale.
(Yeah, based only on my 5 or 6 tours of the course as a scorer, I’d say so . . . after watching Juli Inkster play her ass off a couple of times and wind up even par, I’d have to say this is NOT a very forgiving course).
And they have solved the age-old question about the rake. 

Getting this graphic to show up on the blog could be problematic . . . but I’ll do what I can . . . .
This online album has 33 photos and will be available on SkyDrive until 03/29/2011.

Par 72

Length 7,225 yards

Greens Champion Bermuda Grass

Rating 73.4

Slope 135

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