Pebble Beach Golf Links – Played 2013
- Rankings: Golf Digest #7, Golf Digest Public #1, Golf Magazine #5, Golf Magazine Public #2
- Location: 1700 17 Mile Drive, Pebble Beach, California
- Year: 1919
- Architect: Jack Neville & Douglas Grant
- Course Access: Resort
- Walking Rules: Carts & Caddies Available
Score Card Information:
- Blue: 6,828 yards, Par 72, 74.7 Rating/143 Slope
- Gold: 6,445 yards, Par 72, 72.6 Rating/136 Slope
- White: 6,116 yards, Par 72, 71.3 Rating/132 Slope
- Red: 5,249 yards, Par 72, 71.8 Rating/129 Slope
Almost everyone who has picked up a golf club has heard of Pebble Beach. Those that haven’t have probably been living under a rock. Nonetheless, a brief history of the course is still informative. The course was designed by two first time architects (Neville & Grant) and what a job they did! Since opening in 1919, their maiden course has hosted 5 U.S. Opens and 4 U.S. Amateurs to date.
I was at Pebble Beach on a vacation with my wife. We were in California for a wedding and decided to turn that occasion into a jaunt across most of the state! The Monterey Peninsula was the middle leg of our trip. I made my way to the course for my 8:30 AM tee time and was promptly shuttled to hit range balls. At this point, I got to see the construction of the new driving range. It is much more expansive than the current offering and will be a great facility when it is finished.
After some warm-ups, I headed to the first tee to meet my playing partners. My wife decided to just walk along (and take all these wonderful pictures)! I was grouped with three Japanese men that were in town on business. Since they spoke very little English the resort had an interpreter on the first tee to introduce us. They were very nice throughout the entire round and we managed to communicate very well despite the language barrier.
I decided to play the gold tees which are listed at 6,445 yards.
Hole 1 – 346 yards – Par 4
The first hole at Pebble Beach is an understated start to what you about to experience. The hole only requires a 200 yard shot right at the bunker seen here.
The tee shot on the second hole is seen below. There is no strategy here, just bomb it up the middle.
The third hole was when I started to recall my experiences playing video games. The tee shot on this hole was tighter than I remembered from the television screen. Something 225 yards at the middle bunker in the distance is the best play.
The fourth hole is listed as a short par 4, but plays much longer to the uphill slope. The best play is to just hit it up the middle.
The fifth hole was the first of the par threes. Pebble has a great collection of one-shot holes and the fifth is a worthy opening act. Note the hazard to the right, this reminded me that I was coming to the great seaside holes!
Everyone knows the par 5, sixth hole, but the ocean out to the right was significantly closer than I expected. That probably resulted in my tee shot going way left!
Anyone that didn’t know about the sixth hole definitely knows about the seventh hole. This was a tantalizing little shot that I got to play with only a moderate wind.
The tee shot at the 8th hole plays uphill and should be struck at the yellow house seen here. You only want to go about 230 yards, as I was only a few yards from the cliff!
I didn’t get a shot of 9 tee, but below is the approach to the beastly par 4. There is a lot of elevation change down to the green.
The 10th hole is another long hole with a driver down the middle being the play.
The eleventh hole plays on a line a little right of the telephone pole in the distance.
The 12th plays to a shallow green as seen here.
Hole 13 – 391 yards – Par 4
The thirteenth hole plays longer than the listed yardage. A good line is just right of the left bunker. It was more of a carry than it looked, driver is recommended.
The par 5 fourteenth has a good dogleg to the right. A driver up the middle is the best play.
I missed the fifteenth hole, but below is the tee shot on the sixteenth. A drive right over the left side of the bunker will leave you in a good spot.
And here we are at the seventeenth tee. Just a great hole that I will let the photo tell the story.
Now I have finally reached the eighteenth tee. I can just picture Jack Nicklaus sitting on the bridge looking into the ocean or Tiger Woods getting ready to complete his massive win in the 2000 US Open. This is another photo that I will let tell the story.
Overall, I loved my experience at Pebble Beach. It was everything I had hoped it would be down to the weather being overcast with a good wind for most of the round. It is certainly a bucket list course that I would recommend to anyone. As a side note, I would also recommend eating at the Tap Room afterwards. You never know who you might see and the food is really good. I had the signature ale and it was a great finish to a wonderful day on a major championship golf course.