I really enjoy more and more natural golf. I don’t even mind less than perfect greens. If you hit it close to the hole enough, you’ll make your share.
Playing off a variety of different lies should be part of the game… part of it’s charm and beauty.
There of course is a quality and beauty about playing a perfectly manicured golf course. I remember as a youngster playing Los Angeles CC for the first time… back in the 1970’s, and just being mesmerized by the perfect conditions, and later playing Cypress Point, and having the same kind of awestruck experience.
But both those courses also had stunning off the fairway beauty… and more than their share of memorable holes.
One of the things so shocking about Los Angeles CC was how quickly a sneaky right turn off Wilshire Blvd could turn into a landscape of natural beauty with the occasional deer roaming a fairway… and the density of the forestation… then you would get a glimpse of a skyscraper in the distance, towering up out of a tree line. And getting a peak at some of the backyards of homes owned by Aaron Spelling, or Hugh Hefner and so on… it can be a very majestic feeling.
However… a boring golf course, one feeling contrived or overly manipulated, too long, too open, but in perfect condition does little for me. I like to feel that I am playing across a natural flow of the terain. It helps me feel my shot, knowing there is a general trending of the topography. Los Angeles CC is a perfect example of this. It’s easy to feel the property.
I like interesting targets with multiple risk and reward options. I don’t mind occasionally being forced into a specific shot,
but a whole day were I have to hit every iron shot as high as possible get boring quickly.
It seems the modern courses feel more or less like an after thought of something else… like a subdivision. I don’t see many golf courses being built for the sole purpose of just golf. Small clubhouse, no homes… just a golf course. That may not be too practicle in today’s financially driven aggressive dog eat dog world. But if we look just at the golf element… and we look at the purity of the intent … “Is this really about golf?” It can give a different perspective.
That’s probably why I like playing Mare as much as I do… it’s a golf course… nothing else, nothing more. No frills, tennis courts, sales people, bar minimums…none of that… so I don’t mind putting on less than perfect greens or the occasional bad lie in the fairway.