Golf Course Bunker Design

November 21st, 2022 by admin Leave a reply »

The placement and the use of bunkers is probably one of the most important considerations in designing a golf course. Bunkers help define the landing areas, it make for a visually exciting golf course and in many cases they are what makes the course strategically challenging. There are a variety of styles of bunkers. On a public daily fee golf course, you would probably have less bunkers than you would on a private or a destination golf course. The capes might not be as dramatic and therefore they might be less challenging to play out of and a little bit easier to take care of.

What are you referring to when you say the “cape” of the bunker? The cape is the crown of grass that comes over the top of the bunker, the mound on the back side of the bunker that adds some elevation change. If those capes are very steep and dramatic, they are probably a little more difficult to maintain. Depending on how dramatic they are, they could require a little more manual labor, raking of the sand and maybe even some hand mowing.

What are your thoughts about “hidden bunkers?” I think the holes that people seem to remember and like the most are the ones where they can see everything unfold in front of them. They can see all the bunkers; they can see the water hazards and the wetlands. You want to be able to see the hole when you’re preparing to hit your shot so you can make an informed decision on how to play it

Generally we would not put bunkers behind a green where they can’t be seen. However, there are times where we might propose a “catch” bunker or a “savior” bunker in that location. If for instance there is water behind the green, we may put a bunker behind the green to gather a shot that trickled off the green, rather than penalize a player with a full one stroke penalty for going off the edge.

Usually we’re using bunkers to frame the holes and define the landing area. Those can be a cross bunker, which we put in the fairway to provide direction. If it happens to be a carry bunker, you can get a little kick off the backside of the bunker if you can carry it with your shot. It’s the risk reward aspect of design.

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