I’ve never seen a Sequoia tree in person, but I’ve been told that photos and video don’t do these majestic wooden skyscrapers justice. I know you can drive your car through some of them, which says quite bit with the magnitude of these creations.
For the first time in the game’s history, Golden Tee is headed out west to get an up-close (sometimes WAY too up-close) look at these trees. Sequoia Grove will be a popular destination in Golden Tee 2013 because frankly we’ve never seen anything quite like it.
I’ve gotten more than a handful of rounds on the Grove, and the following items are what stood out most.
About Those Trees…
We can’t start anywhere else, and really, this is a theme throughout. The trees on Sequoia Grove are magnificent, beautiful and…everywhere.
You can’t see the tops of most of these gigantic obstacles, but they’ll be in your intended path early and often. They surround the fairways, guard the green and will alter your path on more than just a handful of shots.
You’ll be asked to thread the needle on occasion with your round possibly on the line, and there’s plenty of water positioned on or around the course that makes this threading a little, no, A LOT more important.
Unlike other trees in the game, there are no leaves to shoot through. The surface area has increased a great deal and I can report that the Sequoia trees are as hard as they look. Your ball won’t just fall down if you happen to clock one, it’ll likely come right back at you.
They are a force, no doubt about it...
The Drivable Par-4s
Drivable par-4s are the ones that make or break your round. Eagles on these particular designs add up, although the surrounding trees and hazards can dismantle your scorecard. The swings can be tremendous, and on Sequoia the swings might be even greater.
Trees are the theme on these designs (shocking, I know), and you’ll have to hit around, over, and even through these big boys to reach the green in one. There is plenty of water and other trouble near them, so I don’t need to warn you that you better hit your spots.
Holes 13 and 18 in particular stand out as ones to look out for, and you will not miss the gigantic trees with the holes cut conveniently at the base. Shots on these holes will vary, but needless to say you’re going to want to keep the ball low and be on point.
Also, may I suggest buying Golden (low) Tees?
The Fascinating Hole 17
I’ll be completely honest with you. I have no idea how to play this hole. I do know, however, that this design has my attention more so than perhaps any other in 2013.
The 17th hole is a short par-5 with a massive grouping of trees (seen above) guarding the front part of the green. Although they take up most of the space, there are some extremely small openings for a ball to fit through. The green isn’t directly behind these trees, but instead tucked back a bit. With the right shot, however, there is the potential to get there.
NOTE: I have not hit that “right” shot yet.
You can also follow the fairway around to the left an attempt to reach the green in two this way. This second shot will vary in difficulty, and there’s water situated around much of the hole which gives you very little room for error. This really is a fantastic design that will require some dissection.
You’re going to absolutely love this course. It’s different, it has variety, it’s challenging (if you want to score big) and manageable if you’re playing for birdie.
You’ll hit a ton of different shots and the possibility for a monster round is there. Plenty of drivable par-4s and a (potentially) reachable par-5 have the makings of a high volatility course.
We'll break down the other courses soon enough. Stay tuned to Goldentee.com for more!