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Lou_Duran

  • Karma: +0/-0
The best introduction to golf architecture?
« on: January 14, 2003, 12:40:52 PM »
A new player in our group received a book for Christmas detailing F. Quimet's (sp) US Open victory at Brookline.  He is thouroughly enjoying it though it is a total departure from his normal reading habits.  I suggested that he look into golf architecture as a way to broaden his horizons and appreciation of golf.  He asked me for a recommendation, and what a better group of people than gca.com to ask for guidance.  "The Architects of Golf" and "The Anatomy of a Golf Course" are two that come to mind.  Other recommendations?  
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Michael Dugger

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Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2003, 12:51:28 PM »
World Atlas of Golf
subscription to Links mag
Anatomy is a nice choice.  

Then move on to the old stuff
Internet?
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
What does it matter if the poor player can putt all the way from tee to green, provided that he has to zigzag so frequently that he takes six or seven putts to reach it?     --Alistair Mackenzie--

George Pazin

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2003, 01:32:55 PM »
I'd go with one of Geoff Shackelford's books. The Captain was my first architecture book and it couldn't have been a better introduction to the subject - unless it was The Golden Age... or The Art of Golf Design. :) Better photos and overview in The Golden Age..., better overall art and essays in The Art of Golf Design. Can't go wrong with any of 'em.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
Big drivers and hot balls are the product of golf course design that rewards the hit one far then hit one high strategy.  Shinny showed everyone how to take care of this whole technology dilemma. - Pat Brockwell, 6/24/04

Tom Doak

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2003, 02:09:16 PM »
Lou -- I appreciate your mentioning my book.  However, my own introduction to golf architecture was THE WORLD ATLAS OF GOLF, and I'd still recommend it as the ideal starter.  It would help if your friend has seen a couple of the courses featured, but even if he hasn't, he'll be armed and ready to watch the majors on TV this year.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Tim Weiman

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2003, 03:47:32 PM »
Lou Duran:

I agree with Tom Doak that something like THE WORLD ATLAS OF GOLF is ideal for an introduction to golf architecture. The Anatomy strikes me as being at a more advanced level, more likely to appeal to someone who has gone beyond the "introduction" phase.

My own introduction came in 1966 when Sports Illustrated published "The Best 18 Golf Holes in America". I loved Dan Jenkins description of Pine Valley. Also, the presentation of each hole Jenkins selected made me want to go check them out.

Jenkins made clear that if you really want to learn about golf architecture, you have to travel.

Too bad he didn't also write about the best holes in Australia. I might have made in Down Under a long time ago.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Bill_McBride

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2003, 03:53:53 PM »
John Strawn's "Driving the Green" is certainly a great intro to the nuts and bolts, in the dirt aspects of golf architecture and construction, as well as a horror story about environmental permitting!  I particularly enjoyed John's stories about the shapers performing detailed artistry with D-6 Cats!
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Tommy_Naccarato

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2003, 04:09:27 PM »
It is so amazing to me just how inspring the quirky World Atlas of Golf has been to some of us--especially Tom Doak.

It too is where I got my start as I was mesmerized by the drawings of places I have heard so much about. I paid $10.00 for it on a close out! the whole time I reading it for the first time, I'm saying to myself, "How do these people get to play these courses?" "How do they know so much?"

Needless to say that it was the major source of inspiration for Golf's Most Beloved when he developed this website, but for all to many of us that have rely on it to this day.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

John Bernhardt

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2003, 04:36:40 PM »
Tommy, It is funny that I found a copy of World Atlas from years ago in an old bookcase of books to be kept but not read often frm before I even got real interested in architecture. I had about 20 pages turned down from back then. On an equally, John is unaware of his surroundings, note. I watched Play Misty for Me the other night and remember it as the single most frightening movie from high school. ( I was running around on my gf when I saw the movie and she could have played the lead)I did not notice then how beautiful the scenes in the movie were. Well they were Carmel and Pebble.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Gary Smith (Guest)

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2003, 04:37:04 PM »
My story is similiar to Tommy's. I bought the Atlas on closeout over 20 years ago. About the same time ABC started doing all 18 holes of the two Opens. I have spent quite a few Sunday afternoons since then during the two Opens studying the holes as they were being played out on TV.  

I believe there have been several versions of the Atlas since then, and some of the courses in mine, such as Firestone and Champions, are probably no longer listed.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Forrest Richardson

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2003, 05:07:04 PM »
"The Links" by Hunter.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
Forrest Richardson, Golf Course Architect/ASGCA
    www.golfgroupltd.com
    www.golframes.com

Tommy_Naccarato

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2003, 05:14:39 PM »
John, This is OK. I once had a girlfriend in high school that looked like Sissy Spacek's character in "Carrie," and of course I avoided taking her to the prom.

Gary, I have two copies also, one of the early ones, and one of the newest, which was published by the company in San Diego a few years ago. You still can't beat the quirkiness of the original.

« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Tim Weiman

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #11 on: January 14, 2003, 05:20:25 PM »
Forrest Richardson,

Why would you nominate "The Links" for being a good introductory book?

Isn't it more fitting for people with a more serious interest?
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Craig_Rokke

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #12 on: January 14, 2003, 07:36:50 PM »
My introduction was also "The Architects of Golf." I would
recommend "Anatomy of a Golf Course" , "Masters of the Links" and Shackelford's "Golden Age of Golf Design", too.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

George Pazin

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Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #13 on: January 15, 2003, 07:14:44 AM »
Tommy -

I'm one up on you - I have three different copies of The World Atlas. It might be the book I'd choose if stranded on a desert isle with only one book - but definitely one of the earlier vintages.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
Big drivers and hot balls are the product of golf course design that rewards the hit one far then hit one high strategy.  Shinny showed everyone how to take care of this whole technology dilemma. - Pat Brockwell, 6/24/04

Lou Duran

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2003, 07:23:13 AM »
Thanks for the recommendations, gentlemen.  I happen to have an extra, early edition of "World Atlas", so I'll get him started with that.  Should that whet his appetite, I'll introduce him to the written work of Doak and Shackelford, and the other suggested books.  I am confident that this will increase his enjoyment of the game, as well as his travels.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

guest

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #15 on: January 15, 2003, 07:28:28 AM »
Tim, the Links is a great introduction, full of color and charm. And it is about golf holes and golf architecture, hazards, laying out the course, ideal lengths, great photos, etc., and all very easy for a newcomer to understand.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

SL_Solow

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #16 on: January 15, 2003, 07:40:24 AM »
If you can find anything by Herbert Warren Wind discussing the topic that would be a good start.  His ability to paint word pictures was phenomenal.  His description of courses and some essays on the history of gca helped get me started
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Jeff_Brauer

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Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #17 on: January 15, 2003, 07:53:59 AM »
I know I loved reading the World Atlas of Golf.  When I started working for Killian and Nugent, I was incensed when the book gave credit for remodelling Medinah for the 75 Open, when in fact, K and N did it.  The story line, "George Fazio returns to where he lost a playoff" must have been too good to pass up, even if not true......

A Golf Digest article by HH Wind on design, and another one by Gary Player initially stirred my interest.  Sadly, I have lost both articles.  And sadder, newbies will only get "toilet reads" on golf design from the current issues of major golf magazines.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
Jeff Brauer, ASGCA Director of Outreach

George Pazin

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Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #18 on: January 15, 2003, 08:35:44 AM »

Quote
The story line, "George Fazio returns to where he lost a playoff" must have been too good to pass up, even if not true......

This is why I was disappointed to hear about the inaccuracies in the Ouimet book. Fact fitting to make the story flow better.

As long as I'm bringing up fiction, The Good Doctor Returns and The Greatest Course That Never Was were entertaining reads. Architecture lite, in a sense.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
Big drivers and hot balls are the product of golf course design that rewards the hit one far then hit one high strategy.  Shinny showed everyone how to take care of this whole technology dilemma. - Pat Brockwell, 6/24/04

paul cowley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #19 on: January 15, 2003, 07:24:42 PM »
lou....The World Atlas of Golf for reference ,and Golf in the Kingdom on sundays.....
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
paul cowley...golf course architect/asgca

paul cowley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #20 on: January 15, 2003, 07:28:23 PM »
lou....The World Atlas of Golf for reference ,and Golf in the Kingdom on sundays.....
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
paul cowley...golf course architect/asgca

Slag Bandoon

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #21 on: January 19, 2003, 01:59:57 PM »
Many fine books mentioned.
Here's one I found that is quite delightful, especially if someone has a short attention span....

Where the Grass is Always Greener: Insights & Inspirations from the Fairway.     Text compiled by Terry Glaspey with paintings by Donny Finley
Hardcover, 2000

The paintings are very pleasant and thoughtful.  Whereas we might not label this book as serious, it does concentrate on the affects that golf courses have on us; that is the door we need to open for further golf course study.   The idea that golf is about us (and our scores!) is displaced with the higher topic of appreciation for nature, golf design and art. There are many quotes from archies and pros and writers.  Highly recommended, even for those who think they know it all.

  Again, fine standards for intro  . . .
Anatomy of a Golf Course  -  Doak
Masters of the Links - Shackelford
Rough Meditations - Klein
Casca - The Eternal Mercenary  - by late, great Barry Sadler
w.GCA.com interviews and course profiles


« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

Slag Bandoon

Re: The best introduction to golf architecture?
« Reply #22 on: January 19, 2003, 02:41:11 PM »
 Honorable mention goes to "Links" by Lorne Rubenstein.  It was the first book I ever read about golf and it opened my eyes that there are no limits to golf.  I remember picking it up from a clearance rack (sorry Lorne) and saw golf in another way.  There are obstacles in golf.  Highs and lows.  Tragic and magic moments.  Dull and exciting.  It revealed reasons for spending countless energy, time and finances on such a silly notion.  And that each of us have to play through our tribulations for those revelations.  

  Thanks Lorne.  It was a great read.

Next, I think was Golf Dreams, by John Updike.
And Fore!  The Best of Wodehouse on Golf.  

Perhaps it was through the literacy of these fellers that I became so further interested in golf itself.  No "toilet reads" are they.

 I am a subscriber to LINKS mag but I think it's slipping.  I don't think it exemplifies the soul of golf in its mission.  
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »

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