Hole 1 -- Beauty From the Start
Short and snappy, but it can bite you

Posted October 9, 2008
2008, Herbert E. Lindberg

The first hole starts at the top of a hill that looks out onto a slight dogleg left.  More often than not the tee is placed more to the left than in this view, so the tree-covered hill on the left is an even more threatening hazard. The ideal tee shot is a slight draw onto the middle of the fairway.  Average golfers often drift toward the trees on the right to avoid the more serious trees on the left.  A truly errant shot to the right goes onto the driving range -- out of bounds.

The red (middle distance) and black (shortest distance) tees are partly down the hill and more centered on the fairway, making this tee shot much more forgiving of lateral error.  (The camera is at these tees, which are essentially the same for this hole.)  Also, from the white tee (longer distance) even middle handicap golfers (about 20 at Lake Wildwood) often fall short of 150 yards to the green, which brings the green bunkers seriously into play. The closer red and black tees make it much more likely that these players will have an approach shot that lands on the green.

As you can see in this view, errant shots from a player who can just barely make it to the green with a wood on his or her second shot have a good chance of getting into a left or right bunker.  This can also be a problem for big boomers who can drive the green, which is why they usually "lay up" (those lucky dogs!).

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