Go Golf Kauai Tips: Playing Princeville Makai’s Seventh Hole
By. Mike Dauplaise, Golf writer
The Princeville Makai Golf Club is one of the most visually appealing courses on the entire island and the more scoring-friendly than its north shore neighbor, the Prince Course. An extensive renovation project overseen by original architect Robert Trent Jones, Jr. brought the 18-hole championship course up to elite standards in 2010.
Have your camera ready for one of the most photographed holes in the world. The combination of ocean, sunshine, and the pyramid-shaped formation in the background on the far right, commonly known as Bali Hai (Makana Mountain), makes this hole simply breathtaking.
Even if you’re playing from one of the forward tees, take a moment to check out the view from the back tees. The 213 yards of full carry over an ocean gorge is awesome. If you’re there during whale season (roughly November through early May), you may get lucky enough to catch the far-off splash of a breach.
The blue and white tees are of a more manageable distance, but still require a full carry. This hole is incredible even from the forward tees, where there is no forced carry. However, the gorge comes into play on the right and the expanse of ocean behind the green still causes the grip to squeeze a little tighter.
The trade winds generally blow from the left, and Jones provides plenty of room left of the green to play it safe. Bunkers frame much of the green’s perimeter, but there is an opening from the left for run-up shots. The green is wide, but shallow from the men’s tees; long and narrow from the red tees. The wind and ocean influence putts toward the right side of the green. Seeing this hole is worth the price of admission alone.
Mike Dauplaise is making the e-books he has produced about each of the public golf courses on Kauai available for free for a limited time. This week’s selection, “Golf Makai,” features a foreword by Princeville Makai architect Robert Trent Jones Jr. Download it for free through January 26. http://amzn.to/1N9CZzn