Where can I see one of these holes?
Named simply “plateau,” it’s no surprise that there is yet another immaculate template hole at Macdonald’s most iconic course. The 11th is a 432-yard par-4 that starts off with a semi-blind tee shot with a bunker down the left. The approach plays over a principal nose bunker that stops any running shots. The green is in the classic “L” shape and features the distinct tiers. There are also small bunkers surrounding the green to catch any shots off target or with too much speed. If you’re ever lucky enough to find yourself on this course, this will be one of many standout holes from the round.
Yale Golf Course No. 17
The 17th hole at Yale is named “nose” for its principal nose bunker. This 437-yard par-4 has all the tell-tale signs of a Macdonald/Raynor double plateau hole. The main hazard other than the green is the bunker complex sitting 60 yards short of the green. In 1925, Charles Banks wrote of the hill: “The approach to the green on the left is guarded by a mound flanked with bunkers, one on the left, one at the right, both visible from the playing ground from the second shot and a third behind the knoll next to the green which is hidden from the player making the second shot.” The green is large and any approach that ends up in the wrong section will have a roller coaster of a putt.
Old Macdonald (at Bandon Dunes) No. 1
Tom Doak is in love with the first hole on Old Macdonald. A shorter, 304-yard par-4, this double plateau has a lot of fairway to work with, bringing in options and angles for the approach based on where the flag is on a given day. Doak’s rendition of the principal nose bunker is closer to the green than normal, but still makes for a wonderful challenge because the hole plays short to begin with. Of the approach shot, Doak says, “No matter which way you go, getting your second shot onto the front left or back right plateau when the flag is there is an excellent shot.”
Sleepy Hollow Country Club No. 12
The 12th at the fairytale course Sleepy Hollow is a par-5 version of a double plateau template. This dogleg curves to the left, with the classic “L” shaped green built in a redesign by Gil Hanse. The hole takes advantage of the rugged terrain, sweeping through exposed rock, a small stream and beautiful trees. The stream is a perfect hazard to make players decide between laying up and going for the green. The three-tiered green is large enough for lots of pin positions, but also severe at points. This course is full of magic and this awesome par-5 only adds to the brilliance.
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