Pebble Beach Flyovers: Seventeenth And Eighteenth Holes

By 2010 the 17th green had devolved to the point players were intentionally placing their tee shot in the bunker, then taking the chances with an up-and-down. As I recall—please tell me if you think otherwise—the hole was cut left on this hourglass green all four days.

Here was a then and now view of 17 (1929 vs. 2010) that I posted from the U.S. Open.

Since then the green was remodeled and is significantly more playable and interesting than last time we saw U.S. Open conditions here. It’s always one of the most difficult holes to gauge the wind’s effect in U.S. Open conditions due to the grandstand by the green and more protected tee area.

I am not sure what to expect of the famous closing hole this time around since players were regularly reaching the hole in August’s U.S. Amateur. The fairway has been narrowed significantly and forces tee shots to hug the cliffs, with the fairway bunkers now protected by rough.

The layup isn’t much to worry about without the overhanging tree of yesteryear, but the 70-foot tall replacement can be a killer if a player goes for the green and leaves a shot out to the right. Still, expect players to try and get as close to the green as possible if they hit a good tee shot.