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Hole by Hole Guide
Though Augusta National is steeped in tradition, change on the golf course has always been part of the plan. Take a tour of the Masters course at Augusta National to see what's new.
The slight dogleg right is not the easiest tee shot golfers will face. Carrying the fairway bunker will require a drive of 300 yards, and shorter hitters will face an uphill shot to the undulating green.
A slight draw off the tee sets up a chance to reach the par-5 green in two. Bunkers in front of the green often come into play.
Most players opt for position off the tee with a long iron or a fairway wood. The small green, which slopes from right to left, is not entirely visible from the fairway.
This tough par-3 requires a long-iron shot to the green, which is guarded by a pair of bunkers.
The deep fairway bunkers on the left require a carry of 315 yards around the dogleg. Large humps in the green make it a challenging putting surface.
This downhill par-3 usually requires no more than a medium iron to the large, undulating green. Put the ball on the wrong part of the green, however, and a three-putt is likely.
The new tee installed in 2002 puts a driver back into most players' hands. The hole features a narrow fairway to an elevated, well-bunkered green.
A large fairway bunker makes this par-5 difficult to reach in two shots. A blind uphill shot awaits those who are tempted to go for it in two.
The severely sloped green makes par a challenge. Accuracy off the tee is required, and approach shots that are short of the target often roll off the green.
Historically the toughest hole at Augusta National, the tee shot requires a hard hook to gain extra distance. Drives that go too far right will leave a long second shot; if they go too far left, trees are a problem.
The start of Amen Corner is the most difficult hole in recent years because of its added length. A slight fade off the tee is necessary to reach the fairway. The greenside pond is more of a factor, because players have longer shots into the green.
The shortest hole is a bear to play because of swirling winds. It's usually a medium- or short-iron shot to a narrow green that is protected by Rae's Creek in front and azaleas behind.
The classic risk-reward hole became more challenging with a new tee added in 2002. A slight draw is required to get into position for the second shot to the par-5, but a tributary of the creek catches shots that come up short.
It's the only hole on the course without a bunker, but a severe green provides plenty of problems. Players often have to hit driver instead of a 3-wood, and a sloping fairway kicks shots into trouble on the right. Large undulations on the green make this the trickiest to putt.
Changes made in the last decade make reaching this par-5 hole in two shots a challenge, but plenty of birdies will be had. A pond guards the green in front, but those who lay up face a hard shot from a downhill lie.
This par-3 requires anything from a short- to medium-iron shot. The green is the hole's main defense; being below the hole is a must. The back bunker and a pond on the left also pose hazards.
Players must negotiate Ike's Tree off the tee, but for most it's a short-iron second shot into a rock-hard green.
The closing hole has become a 465-yard challenge with the extension of the tee in 2002. An accurate drive is a must, and an expanded bunker complex requires a clout of 335 yards to carry. Trees to the left of the bunkers prevent a bailout on that side, and the elevated green is guarded by bunkers.
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Bobby Jones on the design of Augusta National
1. Dr. Mackenzie and I believe that no good golf hole exists that does not afford a proper and convenient solution to the average golfer and the short player, as well as to the more powerful and accurate expert.
2. We have always felt that the make-or-break character of many of the holes of our second nine has been largely responsible for rewarding our spectators with so many dramatic finishes. It has always been a nine that could be played in the low thirties or the middle forties.
Alister Mackenzie on the design of Augusta National
1. There should be little walking between the greens and tees, and the course should be arranged so that in the first instance there is always a slight walk forwards from the green to the next tee; then the holes are sufficiently elastic to be lengthened in the future if necessary.
2. There should be a minimum of blindness for the approach shots.
3. There should be a sufficient number of heroic carries from the tee, but the course should be arranged so that the weaker player with the loss of a stroke or portion of a stroke shall always have an alternative route open to him.
Anyone who started competing in the Masters during the early 1970s might think the Augusta National was always immaculate.
Here's how Mother Nature and environmentally friendly maintenance practices create awe-inspiring beauty of the Augusta National Golf Club.
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