Santa Cruz, CA, USA
I was fortunate to play four days in a row at Pasatiempo in 2007 as a sophomore in college, the same year the club completed its restoration project under the eye of Tom Doak. Pasatiempo was originally designed by Dr. Alister MacKenzie and one which he claims to be the best layout he ever designed, ahead of Cypress Point and Augusta National. The course tells the tale of two distinct nines, the front nine offering many straight away and often tree-lined holes while the back nine dips and dives with many holes featuring deep ravines on approach to the green. The bunkering is classic MacKenzie; deep faced with a lot of character, always intimidating the golfer on their final look to the target before pulling the trigger. The most famous green has to be the 16th, with its false front and severe triple tier surface. The approach requires both precise distance and spin control, the often-receptive Poa Annua greens make it difficult to maintain an approach on the correct level. Although Pasatiempo does not rank as highly when compared to Cypress Point and Augusta National it is without doubt a beautiful and challenging layout from start to finish.
Photo Credit: © Gary Lisbon | https://www.golfphotos.com.au/ | IG: @garylisbongolf