Friday, December 30, 2016

2016 Year in Review = 79 New courses

The year began with the sale of my home in Florida. This allowed me to finally justify taking off for the rest of the winter to the Land Down Under. 21 new courses in New Zealand, Tasmania, and Melbourne region of Australia resulted from that 6 week excursion. A spectacular part of the world with wonderful people which I hope to return again soon.

Summer and into Fall netted me another 19 new courses. I finally finished off playing every hole that is active in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Interesting that one course starts in Wisconsin but has 4 holes in the U.P. That was the last hurdle holding me back for the past couple of seasons. If you have the opportunity during July and August, the U.P. is a beautiful place to visit with temperate weather. Make sure to visit Greywalls GC in Marquette.

November found me renting at The Villages for 6 weeks until before the Holidays. All 48 courses could have been conquered in that time, but I decided to come back for another month in January. So 39 new courses were added to my list including all 12 of the Championship courses. Look for forthcoming articles ranking the Championship and Executive courses.

79 New Courses is a new yearly record for me and has gotten me down to only 291 courses until my milestone #1000 course. The other carrot that keeps me going is shooting my age on a regulation length course. As we all do after a round and play the "what if game", I had a couple of shots at it this year but could only get within 4 strokes. Soon I will be another year older and who knows when I might find lighting in a bottle for a round.

Wishing you all a Happy, Healthy, New Year in 2017!!

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Aging and Golf

"Eventually you will reach a point when you stop lying about your age and start bragging about it."

For me, that day will start the first time I shoot my age. Last year I played in a one man scramble format tournament and hit it at 65. Otherwise, the closest I have gotten on a regulation length course is 4 years over.

"I'll shoot my age if I have to live to be a 105."-Bob Hope

Friday, November 25, 2016

The One with the Fastest Cart will never have a Bad Lie

There are over 50,000 carts at The Villages. Many are street legal, so watch out if playing golf with a Villager on one of their 48 courses and 630 holes.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

The Eighth 100

701 -Orange Blossom Hills GCC, The Villages- 2016 W
702 -Briarwood (9), The Villages- 2016 G
703 -Lopez Legacy CC (Ashley Meadows/Torri Pines), The Villages- 2016 G
704 -El Diablo (9), The Villages- 2016 W
705 -Walnut Grove (9), The Villages- 2016 G
706 -Oakleigh (9), The Villages- 2016 W
707 -Glenview Champions CC (Stirrup Cup/Talley Ho), The Villages- 2016 G
708 -Hacienda Hills GCC (Palms/Oaks), The Villages- 2016 G
709 -Palmer Legends CC (Cherry Hill/Laurel Valley), The Villages-2016 B
710 -El Santiago (9), The Villages- 2017 W
711 -Bonita Pass (9), The Villages- 2017 G
712 -Hill Top (9), The Villages- 2017 W
713 -De La Vista (9), The Villages- 2017 W
714 -Silver Lake (9), The Villages- 2017 W
715 -Juliette Falls GC, Dunnellon- 2017 B
716 -Havana CC (Kenya9), The Villages- 2017 G
717 -Chula Vista (9), The Villages- 2017 W
718 -Mira Mesa (9), The Villages- 2017 G
719 -Palmetto Hall, Cupp Course, Hilton Head- 2017 G
720 -Palmetto Hall, Hills Course, Hilton Head- 2017 G
721 -Island West GC, Bluffton-2017 W
722 -Golden Bear GC, Hilton Head- 2017 B
723 -Crecent Pointe GC, Bluffton- 2017 B
724 -Pinecrest GC, Bluffton- 2017 G
725 -GC at Hilton Head Lakes, Hardeeville- 2017 G
726 -Eagle's Pointe GC, Okatie- 2017 W
727 -Dolphin Head GC, Hilton Head- 2017 B
728 -Bear Creek GC, Hilton Head- 2017 B
729 -SummerGlen GC, Ocala- 2017 W
730 -Evans Prairie CC (Osprey9), The Villages- 2017 W
731 -Green Hills GC, Mt. Vernon- 2017 G
732 -Cardinal GC, Effingham- 2017 W
733 -Mark Twain GC, Elmira- 2017 G
734 -Shennecossett CC, Groton- 2017 G
735 -Meadow Brook CC, Richmond- 2017 B
736 -Highland Links (9), North Truro- 2017 B
737 -The Hermitage GC, Wilmington- 2017 G
738 -The Shattuck, Jaffrey- 2017 G
739 -Penobscot Valley CC, Orono- 2017 W
740 -Algonquin GC, St Andrews by-the-Sea, NB- 2017 B

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Ryder Cup 2016 Hazeltine National Photo Tour Link

Last summer I had the privilege to visit Hazeltine National in Chaska, MN. It was a beautiful day to play golf and capture its pristine beauty with photo's. I had the course all to myself so the pictures turned out great. Please use them along with the course guide to better enjoy the upcoming 2016 Ryder Cup experience.

Just click on the SLIDESHOWS header above and scroll down to Hazeltine for the Link.

Future Ryder Cup Venues: 2018 Le Golf National, Paris   2020 Whistling Straits, Wisconsin
2022 Marco Simone, Rome  2024 Bethpage Black, New York  2026 Royal Portrush or RCD??

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Golfer Wins Lottery

Before leaving for his daily round of golf, the husband asked his wife: "What would you do if I won the lottery?"

She replied: "I'd take half of it and leave you."

"Great" he said. "Here's $6. I won $12 yesterday-stay in touch."

Friday, September 16, 2016

I WAS ONE UNDER TODAY!!!

One under..... a tree

One under..... a bush

       ......and......

One under.....the water

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Buzz and Louie

Buzz was teeing off from the men's tee. On his downswing, he realized his buddy Louie was teeing up on the senior tee directly in front of him. Unable to stop his swing, he nailed it and hit him directly in the temple. Killing him instantly!

A few days later, Buzz got a call from the coroner regarding Louie's autopsy. Coroner: "Buzz, your buddy seemed to have died from blunt force-trauma to the head. You said you hit a golf ball and hit him in the temple, is that correct?"

Buzz: "Yes sir, that's correct."

Coroner: "Well inexplicably, I found a golf ball wedged up his butt."

Buzz: "Was it a yellow Topflight Gamer?"

Coroner: "Yes it was."

Buzz: "That was my mulligan."


Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Michigan's Upper Peninsula Top 9-hole courses

The Upper Peninsula (U.P.) has 54+ golf courses of which 24+ are of the 9-hole variety. Several are around 100 years old and a few are home made that may not be the greatest design but are well maintained and enjoyable. As is the case around the USA, golf is a tough business to make a profit and there have been a few courses go out of business recently. Please support as many of these courses as you can.

Keweenaw Mt was developed on a rugged site during the Depression by the CC and has on site cabins with fireplaces. Waswashkamo is a 1898 Alex Smith design on Mackinaw Island which is overlooked by many but a real classic sleeper you should not miss. Gentz's in Marquette is one of the best conditioned and friendliest courses in the U.P. with a totem pole right in the middle of a fairway. Most of these courses are reasonably priced and should not be passed by.

The number preceding the course is when I played it in my quest for 1000. The year noted after is my first time playing that particular course. The Letter is its rating.

For more information about the U.P. please scroll down to the July 2013 post.

142 -Keweenaw Mt Lodge & GC (9), Copper Harbor- 2000 G
116 -Wawashkamo GC (9), Mackinac Island- 1997 G
318 -The Jewel GC (Woods 9), Mackinaw Island- 2008 G
516 -Iron River CC (9), Iron River- 2013 W
331 -St. Ignace GC (9), St. Ignace-2009 W
117 -The Jewel GC (Grand 9), Mackinac Island- 1997 W
608 -Calumet GC (9), Calumet- 2015 W
611 -Wyandotte Hills GC (9), Twin lakes- 2015 W
520 -L'Anse GC (9), L'Anse- 2013 W
144 -Gentz’s Homestead GC (9), Marquette- 2000 W
517 -Crystal View GC (9), Crystal Falls- 2013 W
625 -Drummond Island GC (9), Drummond Island- 2015 W
263 -Hiawatha Sportsman’s Club (9), Naubinway- 2007 W
610 -Ontonagon GC (9), Ontonagon- 2015 W
622 -Les Cheneaux (9), Cedarville- 2015 W
521 -Indian Hills GC (9), Stephenson- 2013 Gr

Monday, August 1, 2016

Michigan's Upper Peninsula Top 18-hole courses

Over the past 20+ years I have played all the (54) currently active golf courses in Michigan's U.P. Below are my rankings of the top fifteen BLUE and GOLD rated 18-hole courses. Currently there are no BLACK rated courses in the U.P., but Greywalls would certainly receive that if they would just flip their nines. Next season a new 18-hole course is coming at the Sweetgrass complex outside of Escanaba, which from what I am hearing should be added to this list. 

There is a lot of great golf to be played at very affordable rates in this region of Michigan. The summers are short and temperate with the best weather between the 15th of June and end of August. The spectacular peak Fall colors are usually around the 3rd week of September with some nice weather and golf to be enjoyed. Make sure and check the weather forecast before heading north at this time of year, in the past there have been snow storms of up to 10" by the 1st of Oct.

For more information about the Upper Peninsula please scroll down to my previous post of 7/20/13.

The number preceding the course is when I played it in my quest for 1000. The year noted after is my first time playing that particular course. 


192 -Greywalls Course at MGC, Marquette- 2004 B
128 -TimberStone GC, Iron Mountain- 1998 B
287 -Sweetgrass GC, Harris- 2008 B
132 -Pine Grove CC, Iron Mountain- 1999 B
087 -The Rock, Drummond Island- 1994 G
155 -Wild Bluff GC, Brimley- 2001 G
576 -Hessel Ridge GC, Hessel- 2014 G
187 -Indian Lakes CC, Manistique- 2004 G
119 -The Heritage Course at MGC, Marquette- 1997 G
178 -Newberry CC, Newberry- 2003 G
143 -Portage Lake GC (MTU), Houghton- 2000 G
127 -Wawonowin CC, Champion- 1998 G
197 -Gladstone GC, Gladstone- 2005 G
654 -Munoscong GC, Pickford- 2016 G
188 -George Young Recreation, Gaastra- 2004 G

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Super Stroke Golf Grips

SuperStroke - Say No To Taper

For the past year I have been playing the Super Stroke 3.0 Slim no taper putter grip and have noticed an improvement in my putting. The grip has shown no abnormal wear and I would highly recommend it to other golfers. They offer a wide variety of sizes and colors.

Recently, I became aware of the S-tech grips for my other clubs. This past week I initially replaced three of my Golf Pride Tour Velvet grips with these. The Super Stroke rubber compound is very similar to that of Golf Pride with the exception that it feels a bit softer. I will monitor and compare how they wear, feel, and maintain their tackiness over the next several weeks of play. A follow up report will be forthcoming at the end of my summer season.

Super Stroke also has a grip with an upper cord and soft rubber lower that I am hoping to obtain and test in the near future for my driver. For more detailed information about Super Stroke products go to: https://superstrokeusa.com/

11/11-UPDATE It has been almost FOUR months since my switch to the S-tech grips, eventually replacing all my Golf Pride Tour Velvets. I am still getting the excellent softer feel and tackiness. By this time with the Tour Velvet grips they had become firmer and had lost most of their sticky feel, even after routine biweekly cleaning. I HIGHLY recommend you all give these a try. My guess is that I may not be changing my grips as often with these new Super Strokes. 5 Stars

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

"I make myself rich by making my wants few."- Thoreau

Sounds like Henry David Thoreau must have been a golf fanatic. His friends thought he was meditating the two years at Walden Pond but Thoreau really was working on his short game.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Tickets to 2016 U.S. Open final round

I have two tickets to the 2016 US Open final round at Oakmont CC, but just realized I'm getting married that day and can't go.

If you are interested in going in my place, it's at the St Paul's Church and her name is Jane.

Monday, March 21, 2016

What is an Elephant's Ass?

In golf terms an "Elephant's Ass"  is a poorly struck shot that is "high and stinky." Usually applied to a popped-up drive that is higher than it is long. An elephant's ass might also prompt a comment such as, "Except for distance and direction, that was a great shot."

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Down Under Trip by the numbers

Yesterday, I played the last round of my dream trip at the historic Kingston Heath GC in Melbourne. Hoping I was saving the best for last, I have no doubt that I did just that. All together I experienced 21 courses from 2/7-3/5, photographing all but one. All except two were seaside courses with 14 being considered True Links plus 6 that would be on most peoples Top 100 list. After playing 1000 courses, my real passion is Links courses which I am now at 76 of the nearly 250 in the world according to the book, True Links.

After landing in Sydney from the USA, I spent a couple of days sight seeing before I headed to Christchurch in the South Island of NZ for eight rounds. The scenery was spectacular from the Fjords to the shores of the west coast and back around through the vineyards of the NE to Christchurch. While I was there they had another earthquake of 5.4 magnitude. They have had over 5,000 shakes in the past 5 years. Next was the North Island arriving in Auckland to my only rainy day. Took in some great courses there with designs by MacKenzie, Russell, Doak, and Harmon. Flew back to Australia into Tasmania to play in Hobart and at Barnbougle, which is very reminiscent of Bandon Dunes Resort. Lastly, I had a few days left to fly back into Melbourne for my final three rounds.

The weather was great with only one wash out, which I was able to make up at Titirangi on my last day in Auckland. The first round in Dunedin, NZ was the coolest in the low 60's and the last round at Kingston Heath by far the warmest as it was 99 as I walked to my car. I got to see a great amount of New Zealand and a bit of Tasmania and Victoria states in Australia. I probably drove over 4,000 miles total in four different rental cars, stayed in 20 different hotels, and logged over 50 hours of flying time in 11 flight segments. All in all I probably traveled close to a total of 35,000 miles round trip. Complete photo tours of  20 courses/2500 photo's will begin around the middle of March with all hopefully posted by the 1st of May.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

New Golf Shoes

   Bert, at 85 years old, always wanted a pair of soft spike golf shoes like Freddie Couples, so seeing them on sale after his round, he bought a pair and he was so delighted with his purchase he decided to wear them home to show the misses.
   Walking proudly into the house, he sauntered into the kitchen and said to his wife, "Notice anything different about me?"
   Margaret at age 83, looked him over and replied, "Nope."
   Frustrated as all get out, Bert stormed off into the bedroom, undressed, and walked back into the kitchen completely naked except for his new golf shoes. Again he asked Margaret, a little louder this time, "Notice anything different NOW?"
   Margaret looked up again and said in her best deadpan response, "Bert, what's  different? It's hanging down today, it was hanging down yesterday, and it'll be hanging down again tomorrow."
   Furious, Bert yells out, "AND DO YOU KNOW WHY IT'S HANGING DOWN, MARGARET?" "Nope. Not a clue", she replied.
   Bert yelled, "IT'S HANGING DOWN BECAUSE IT'S LOOKING AT MY NEW GOLF SHOES!!!
   Without missing a beat old Margaret replies, "Shoulda bought a new golf hat, Bert."

Monday, January 18, 2016

2016 Trip Down Under

The last item on my Golf Bucket List is being able to photograph and experience golf in New Zealand, Melbourne, and Tasmania. I will be leaving on February 2 and returning March 7th for my trip of a lifetime. I have been thinking about this for almost 20 years.

I have divided the trip into 4 sub regions:
1. South Island of New Zealand. 2/6-2/16. True Links courses are one of my passions, there are EIGHT on this island- Chisholm Links, Otakou (9), Oreti Sands, Hokitka, Westport, Karamea (9), Nelson, Takaka (9). Playing all of these will pretty much take me around the whole island. Flying in and out of Christchurch.
2. North Island of New Zealand. Flying into Auckland on the 16th until the 25th. True Links course-Paraparaumu Beach, Titirangi a Mackenzie course, two Doak courses at Cape Kidnappers and Tara It (links) and Kauri Cliffs are the five courses I am focusing on here. This will take me on a figure 8 loop of the island providing a nice overview. Also, played the back 9 at Mangawhai GC.
3. Tasmania 2/25-3/1. Barnbougle Dunes and Lost Farms are two great courses by my favorite architects that I will experience plus take a drive down to Hobart and play Tasmania and Royal Hobart.
4. Melbourne 3/1-3/7. So many great courses in this region I will only be able to see a handful. Kingston Heath course will be a great experience. There are two True Links courses- Barwon Heads and Port Fairy I am also going to play. Maybe, I will have to make a return trip just to play Melbourne area golf in the future.

I have contacted all the above courses and have them all scheduled. I will probably end up photographing around 20 courses on this trip so you all will be able to enjoy about another 2500 photos.