EDITED 4/9/2015: The first day is almost over and as it stands right now, Rose and Hoffman are in the lead!
We’re having a great time prepping for the Masters here at the Cave! The course at Augusta National has changed over the years, but one thing remains the same: This is a tough golf course. The narrow tee shots and many bunkers can easily knock pros away from par. This caveman gone through the history and has broken down the hardest of the hard, the toughest of the tough – the names might not sound very intimidating -but these are the most difficult holes at Augusta!
5th hole: Par 4, 455 yards
Hole Name: Magnolia
With an uphill, dogleg left hole, this fairway was the fifth most difficult fairway to hit in 2012. There’s also those two massive fairway bunkers to contend with. Fun Fact: This hole was inspired by the legendary Road Hole at the Old Course at St. Andrews. Bobby Jones initially disapproved of the fairway bunkers. The green sits just above natural grade which makes it difficult to read. You may not see much of this hole on TV, but trust me, it’s a doozy.
4th hole: Par 3, 240 yards
Hole Name: Flowering Crab Apple
This long par 3 got a whole lot longer thanks to recent changes and test the long iron or fairway wood accuracy for most tour players. Designed as a long version of the 11th at St. Andrews, it’s brutal. Just ask Phil Mickelson. This is where it all went wrong for him three years ago. Two bunkers guard the green and tend to force players to hit long or left. It’s also often made much harder by deceptive winds.
11th hole: Par 4, 505 yards
Hole Name: White Dogwood
Historic avg.: 4.35
This difficult hole is the start of Amen Corner, and wind is often a factor. It’s a blind tee shot through a narrow chute. A pond guards the green to the left and everything slopes that way; a bunker is placed right-center. This hole has decided all but three of the Masters sudden death playoffs, and may be best remembered for Larry Mize’s incredible chip-in to defeat Ben Hogan in 1987. Hogan once said, “If you see my ball on that green in two you’ll know I missed my second shot.” Fun Fact: Prior to 1950, Rae’s Creek ran in front of this green. It was replaced by a larger hazard in form of the current pond.
12th hole: Par 3, 155 yards
Hole Name: Golden Bell
Golden Bell is Augusta’s 12th hole and the heart of “Amen Corner”. One of the most famous holes in golf, it’s the shortest hole on the course at only 155 yards and Par 3. To the front of the green lies Rae’s creek. To the rear of the green lie dozens of azaleas. Immediately hugging the green on both front and back are bunkers. Players to choose their clubs VERY carefully here in order to loft their ball high into the air. Due to the swirling winds, club selection can range from a 6-iron to a 9-iron. In 2012, it produced 13 double bogeys, tied for the most of any hole.
10th hole: Par 4, 495 yards
Hole Name: Camellia
This is it. The toughest hole at Augusta National. The hole is built around a perfect drive that needs to land on an undulating fairway that slopes from right to left. The ball has to come in perfectly high and soft, and there’s no chance of run-up to the perched surface. Too far to the left and golfers must deal with the trees on their approach shot; too far to the right and golfers can have an awkward stance off a slanted lie and an extra 20-30 yards to the green. But I’ll always remember this hole for Bubba Watson’s impressive hook off the pine straw out of the trees and onto the green.