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Yardage and Par
Hole 1Par 5 (476 yards)
A subtle, double dogleg par 5 challenges longer hitters to reach in 2. The shallow front right bunker seems benign and invites shots into the green – but the greenside slope funnels balls back into that bunker. Out-of-bounds behind the green can make for testy half-wedge shot into this opening hole.
Hole 2Par 4 (390 yards)
This short par 4 seems simple enough: a slight dogleg left with a tree-lined fairway that opens up for longer hitters. Bunkers left, right and behind the green exemplify A.V. Macan’s bunker philosophy: they protect you from something worse. This green however is one of five original greens remaining on the course, and it is a masterpiece. Most of the breaks are very subtle, bordering on unreadable. PGA touring pros and lifelong members exit this green shaking their heads.
Hole 3Par 3 (180 yards)
A prominent Shaughnessy member calls this par 3 “the shortest par 5 in the lower-mainland.” Cutthroat Creek on the right encourages golfers to aim left and the slope towards the creek can funnel balls nicely to the hole. But shots missing left of the green, above the hole, can quickly turn into double bogeys. The best misses here are short, long or even in the deep bunker right of the green.
Hole 4Par 4 (418 yards)
This 90-degree, dogleg par 4 borders Cutthroat Creek, the only active salmon creek in Vancouver. The best tee shot is a draw off of the left side of the fairway bunker leaving a shorter iron into the green; but tall trees on the corner punish off-line tee shots. The fairway slopes right to left which can lead to hooked second shots that fly into trees or out-of-bounds. Be careful challenging pins on the upper tier of this green with anything other than a short iron. Misses long, right or left can produce big numbers.
Hole 5Par 4 (427 yards)
A par 4 for the CPKC Women’s Open, this 430-yard hole plays longer than its yardage. The prevailing summer wind is in and the first 230 yards are uphill. Cutthroat Creek crosses the fairway about 25 yards short of the green, forcing either a layup or an uncomfortably long shot into the green. The green itself however is the most easily deciphered on the golf course.
Hole 6Par 4 (368 yards)
A masterpiece from the black tees, this hole can be surprisingly challenging from the forward tees. A dogleg right, tee shots to the left must contend with tall trees 50 yards short of the green. The tree cluster on the right corner of the dogleg invites a cut drive (for right handers) that when properly executed leaves a short iron into the green. A deep bunker borders the green on the front left. When the pin is cut on the right side of the green, take pains to stay short of the hole. Putts from above the hole are scary fast.
Hole 7Par 5 (533 yards)
A long par 5, dogleg right. Prevailing summer winds make this hole reachable for longer hitters. Tee shots that miss to the right leave second shots blocked by trees; missing left brings Cutthroat Creek back in play. If you can’t reach in two, a fairway wood off the tee may be the prudent play leaving a 3rd shot wedge into a well-bunkered green that slopes from front to back. It’s noteworthy that there are no bunkers blocking the front of the greens at Shaughnessy. In the summer, when the course is playing firm and fast, the option to roll a shot onto the green is often the better choice out of the rough.
Hole 8Par 3 (202 yards)
A par 3 that can play anywhere from 120 to 210 yards in length. It plays uphill and into a prevailing summer breeze. Four bunkers protect the green, which slopes from back to front. There are some diabolical pin placements on this green. You don’t want to be above this hole, although that is often hard to avoid.
Hole 9Par 4 (396 yards)
An uphill drive into the prevailing wind makes this dogleg left play longer than its yardage. The large fairway bunker pinches the landing area down to 20 yards. Longer hitters can carry the tee shot beyond that point, producing a long runout that leaves a short iron into the green. But missing that long drive to the right, over the fairway bunker, puts you in jail. The fairway is wide and relatively flat for shots hit short of the bunker.
Hole 10Par 4 (425 yards)
The first of three holes that play along the 100-foot cliff edge overlooking the Pacific. An unusual feature of this cliff edge is that it is higher than the adjacent fairways. Don’t expect putts to run towards the ocean; some do, some don’t. Players tend to hit away from the cliff, which brings the tree line on the right into play off of the tee. Recovery shots from the right often lead to short 3rd shots from tight lies that have to be played over a bunker to a green that slopes away. Shaughnessy’s greens are small, averaging less than 3500 sq ft. The false left side of the 10th green makes this green play even smaller. Eagles abound here; bald eagles that is. Enjoy the sights and sounds.
Hole 11Par 5 (490 yards)
From the black tees, perched a few feet from the cliff edge, this long par 5 is truly magnificent. From the blacks it’s a 220-yard carry to get through the narrow chute and onto the fairway. From the forward tees the hole is reachable in 2, and the wide fairway encourages aggressive tee shots. The second shot, however, is more daunting. Winds off of the water can be hard to predict, or even perceive, because of openings in the tree line along the cliff edge. Layups to the edge of the second gully leave 100 yards to the green.
Hole 12Par 3 (177 yards)
A short par 3 that runs away from the cliff edge through a wooded chute that makes it difficult to judge the effect of the wind on the ball. This hole tends to play longer than its yardage, yet shots that end up above the hole can quickly turn this birdie hole into a bogey hole.
Hole 13Par 4 (407 yards)
A dogleg left, par 4, this hole has subtle design features that make it challenging. The tree in the left rough, 100 yards from the green, blocks shots from the left side of the fairway. The fairway bunker on the right creates a tighter landing area for tee shots but laying up in front of the bunker leaves a more challenging second shot. A subtle slope in front of the green prevents short shots from bouncing onto the green while shots landing on the putting surface will run through the green. A well placed, long drive in the center/right of the fairway will leave a short iron into this green, which can be hit with enough spin to control the runout.
Hole 14Par 4 (319 yards)
A drivable par 4 with trouble lurking everywhere. Overhanging trees on both sides cause this fairway to play narrower than it appears. The front portion of this green is narrow and steep. Putting from above the hole is treacherous. Par on this hole feels like under achievement. But it can be much worse. Be happy and move on.
Hole 15Par 5 (540 yards)
A long, dogleg left, par 5. Not reachable except for very long hitters. And it takes only a slight pull for that long second shot to bounce hard left off the greenside bunker slope, OB. This hole has three fairway bunkers. A very long bunker on the left that is in play off the tee, and two bunkers closer to the green at 80 yards (right side) and 50 yards (left side). The prudent play is to lay up 100 yards from the green. Boring but effective.
Hole 16Par 4 (374 yards)
A tricky par 4, dogleg right. The landing area between the fairway bunkers is narrow. But hitting to there or longer gives you a short shot that you can spin into this difficult green. A false left side of the green is in play, even on putts, to pin placements that seem benign. Never much fun to go putt, chip, putt. There are huge breaks off a mound on the back right of this green. By now you’ve realized that nothing comes easy on this golf course.
Hole 17Par 3 (162 yards)
A short par 3: The signature hole on A.V. Macan’s signature course. From the tee the green looks like an infinity pool with the ocean as a backdrop. It’s optically difficult to judge the distances on this hole. The only bunker-less green on the course means you get no help with your depth perception. Shots that land on the right half of the green will roll down the right side of the steep slope into the rough. Shots played left, to avoid the troubles on the right, create difficult chips to a small green that runs away.
Hole 18Par 4 (401 yards)
Bunkers left and trees right make this a tight driving hole. The biggest green on the course offers a wide array of challenges. Any second shot hit left of center on this green is likely to roll off the left side into the greenside rough. Shots hit above the hole on the right plateau often leave difficult downhill putts. Pins located on the narrow front of the green bring two greenside bunkers into play. Pins located in the back/center offer a tantalizing flat spot to for a birdie putt. But a slight pull on that approach shot puts you on a downward sloping bunker lie. Oh yeah, from the black tees the 18th plays 480 yards, uphill. At 380 from the forward tees, this hole offers some tantalizing risk/reward options, making it a very worthy finishing hole.