Pebble Beach Flyover: Fifth And Sixth Holes

Jack Nicklaus watching Gary Nicklaus in the 2018 U.S. Amateur, fifth hole

Jack Nicklaus watching Gary Nicklaus in the 2018 U.S. Amateur, fifth hole

At last summer’s U.S. Amateur, I had the surreal experience of watching Jack Nicklaus watch his son play the hole he designed at the course where he’d won the 1961 U.S. Amateur and 1971 U.S. Open. There was a nice wait that day at Pebble Beach’s fifth, so I tried asking the architect if he was pleased with how it was playing. However, he was in full spectating mode and managed to something to the effect of “its done its job.”

The hole was added in 1998 and was a huge upgrade over the old 5th, a dreadful affair routed uphill because the oceanside property could not be acquired. The new hole plays slightly downhill with Stillwater Cove to the.

The green slopes away from the player, and you’ll notice in the flyover, has already shrunk a bit since the original creation (note the placement of irrigation heads).

The par-5 6th introduces the player to a magnificent meeting of land and sea, maybe one underrated a bit given how often this hole is forgotten in discussions of the best holes at Pebble Beach. The sixth is particularly interesting in the U.S. Open when the firmness heightens the design features off the tee. There has been a tendency of players to bail out way left here in recent events, including the U.S. Amateur, so we’ll see what the modern athletes do here (or what setup measures are taken).

Note in the flyover the juicy back right and back left hole locations lost due to green shrinkage over the years.