Getting on the green

Blogging about some of the world's best golf holes.


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Hole # 18, Poipu Bay Golf Course, Poipu, HI

Hole # 18, par 5, White tees, 550 yards

DSCN5591From the tee box, this finishing hole may not look very intimidating. But wait until you drive up to your second shot. Hole # 18 on the Poipu Bay Golf Course in the south part of Kauai is a beautiful hole to finish on.

Most days in Poipu starts off sunny so if you happen to play this course dry then you are lucky. The locals will tell you that Poipu is the sunniest location on Kauai.

Your second shot should be a lay up avoiding the lake on your left and sand bunkers to your right. Try to position yourself about 100 yards in so that you have a short wedge to get on the green. This would give you the best opportunity for a birdie putt.

Enjoy the drive into the 18th green. Be sure to wave to your left as patrons in the restaurant are watching your approach. Don’t get nervous, tip your hat or wave like Tiger Woods or Vijay Singh when they played here at the Grand Slam of Golf from 1994 to 2006.


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Hole # 12, Dad Miller GC, Anaheim, CA

Hole # 12, par 4, Blue tees, 359 yards

Every time I play at Dad Miller Golf Course in Anaheim, I think I’m going to see Tiger Woods there. Tiger used to play here a lot when he was growing up nearby in Cypress. I like to think that if this course was good enough for him, it’s good enough for the rest of us.

Hole # 12 at Dad Miller is no easy hole off the tee. It has a channel or aquaduct to some that splits the fairway into two. Off the tee box, it looks very reachable. A 7-iron can get you to the bridge but it’ll take a 6-iron to get you over the bridge but that’s no way to get to the green. The best shot will be to lay up right where there is plenty of room. That’s why most players use their 3-wood. Some players like me will use a driver but often, will slice it right leaving a very long way to the green.

This takes visualization that a lot of casual players don’t do enough of. If you visualize your shot, you will setup nicely for your second shot. Try to consider your second shot first. I would like to hit a 8-iron to the green if I can. That means, I need to hit driver or 3-wood close to the channel so that the distance left is about 140 – 150 yards away. Today, I choose my 3-wood to lay up. Fortunately, my ball goes straight and short of the channel. Anymore and it would have rolled right in.

My second shot is an easy 8-iron and I hit the middle of the green. The green is easy to read, pretty flat and not terribly fast greens. Two putt and it’s a par. And I got my GIR too.