San Francisco GC

This is the life, no tee times, just turn up and play, oh did I mention you need to be a member or be playing with one?

What a course! No carts, and no cart paths, caddies are the preferred mode of transport for your clubs, and they don't use lasers, all of the info is calculated the old fashioned way, using the experience gained from hundreds and in many cases thousands of rounds.

The designer is A. W,. Tillinghast - one of the all time great architects, he is responsible for such gems as Bethpage Black, Oakland Hills, Baltusrol, Winged Foot & Firestone.

The design was is a links, no trees were on the property back in 1915 and although the course is several kilometers from the sea, the ground is actually sand dunes.

Over the years Cypress trees have arrived, they are set will back from the playing area for the most part which is a good thing, they add atmosphere, making this a a modern parkland course.

The holes are very strategic, with well placed bunkers creating optical illusions, certainly it would be ideal to play here more than once to get the hang of these small nuances.

Like most great courses, the par 3's are a fantastic, varied in length, direction of play and style. The most interesting is the short downhill 7th at 135m its not demanding in terms of length. It's known as the duel hole, as it was the site of the final legal duel in California (Senator David Broderick lost to California Supreme Court Justice David Terry in 1859). The two pistols are on display in the clubhouse - fascinating stuff.

To read more about the duel click here.

Tom Doak recently assisted the club to re-introduce a couple of holes which had been changed, amazingly he did so without any noticeable variation to the theme and flow of the course.

The closing holes are truly special, the 17th hole is possibly the most difficult on the course, bending to the right its a long hole with no compromise. Once through that test the 8th draws you back to the grand old clubhouse, a reminder of days past.

As with all good clubs, the members are friendly, introductions are made, the banter and stories flow in the 19th, a day i will never forget!

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