It’s In The Hole!!!


As the season gets geared up I find myself thinking back to the start of last year’s season. One of my first big trips of the year was a visit to Prairie Dunes with a bunch of guys for several days where we played the course multiple times. During the first round of the trip one of the guys made an ace on what is one of my favorite par 3s, the 161 yard 2nd hole. I wasn’t in his group that round, but it was awesome to share the excitement in the clubhouse afterwards.

A few weeks later I was playing in my 2 man match play event at home and one of my opponents stuffed his tee shot in on a tough uphill 180 yard par 3. My partner and I ended up losing that match 1 down which was a tough pill to swallow, but such is the way of golf.

I witnessed my first hole in one back in the fall of 2010 and I’ve seen a couple since then. It never gets old seeing someone knock the ball into the hole in a single stroke and I hope I’ll be party to another one this year. I’ve never had an ace myself, but like all golfers I hope that I do one day. As a golf nerd who loves golf courses it’s my daydream is that I make one on a great hole at an iconic golf course. Imagine the thrill of acing the 15th or 16th at Cypress Point or the 10th at Pine Valley . . . oh to dream.

I’d love to hear some hole in one stories. If you have one, please comment below with when and where you had it as well as any other interesting details of the story.

  • CBusGolfers

    I’ve been playing most of my life and like you, I’ve never had an ace. Never even seen one! I have to laugh at your Cypress and PV comment….love that your mindset is around being lucky enough to have an ace there nevermind being lucky enough to play them a second time! Maybe this year is our year!

  • Kelly

    2 years ago was playing hooky from work with my brother-in-law and two buddies – hit a weak fade that I knew would hit the green, so I picked up my tee and started to walk off the box. Looked up in time to see it hit and role in from about 25 feet. My buddy hitting next missed an ace by about an inch and rolled past to 5 feet. Great to have it happen with my regulars, but had to keep it quiet so my boss didn’t know where I was that day.

    • The Itinerant Golfer

      That is awesome. Having to keep it quiet sounds like something that would happen to George in a Seinfeld episode!!!

      • Kelly

        The sea was angry that day my friend

  • Always said that the criteria I wanted for a hole in one was as follows:

    1. Awesome course
    2. A respectable distance-to-club ratio (Didn’t want it published in the newspaper that I had a 150 yard ace with a 3 iron haha)
    3. Wanted to see it go in

    All three of those things came together at the Tom Fazio designed Glenwild course in Park City, UT. I hit a 4 iron 227 yards from an elevated tee where I had a perfect view to see it land eight inches from the hole and roll in. Having a caddie as my witness beyond my playing partner was a nice perk. I was so juiced up afterwards that I bogied the next three holes before settling down and finishing with a 79.

  • Chad

    While I am not lucky enough to have a hole in one, I do have a pretty good story to contribute.

    Many years ago, my grandmother and her mother both aced the same hole on the same course (Pine Orchard Yacht & CC) on the same weekend. Ripley’s Believe It Or Not even wrote an article on the pair of aces. My grandmother still has the article framed in her house.

    Every time I am out there I keep hoping, but no such luck as of yet.

    Keep up the good work!

    • The Itinerant Golfer

      Very cool story Chad!!!

  • john

    oh c’mon man, if we’re talking about pv and dreaming we’re talking about 5 or 14!

    • The Itinerant Golfer

      Good point John. If I’m dreaming, I might as well go for broke. No doubt, the 5th would be the ultimate ace at PV.

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  • Mark

    I think I heard about this ace last fall while playing a round in Pittsburgh with an awesome host! The 2nd at PD is one of my favorite Par 3’s. What a green site!

    • The Itinerant Golfer

      I think we’re talking about the same Ace Mark. I’m surprised Barry hasn’t commented here yet!!

  • Matt

    My first and only ace was on #10 at Pacific Dunes, playing with my best friend and our two dads. It was 155 yards that day, downhill and playing into a stiff breeze. I hit a good 6-iron that landed ~5 feet right of the hole and we got to watch it roll in. $20 glasses of scotch that night never tasted so good!

    Funny enough, it was in the middle of an insane stretch of golf where, after a mediocre front nine, I had a real shot at 29 on the back (until my friend told me as much on the 17th tee). A shaky par then bogey on 18 later, I’ll take the 31 with the amazing start.

  • I’ll share my almost experience of a hole in one:

    I’ve finally come to terms with what I call “The Big Miss”. It’s not only a new book by Hank Haney (Tigers previous coach), but an experience I had not so long ago. Some people have already heard the story.

    It was a regular Saturday comp, Stableford event. Whilst playing our 6th hole (140m par 3) one of my group hit a low fading shot we saw going towards the green, but it was a bit low, I wasn’t paying full attention, whilst others in the group have terrible eyesight, we couldn’t see the ball, so I thought it had shot through. My shot next, thinking I would finally take out nearest the pin, sticking it close to about 40cm. As we walked up we could see a large pitch mark but no ball, so we had our hopes up that the guys ball we couldn’t see had got a hole in one. Sure enough he had, so high fives all around. Unfortunately though no-one had seen the ball go in, but it was still a hole in one, so great feeling, especially since it was the eagles nest.

    Two holes later, we have our toughest par 3, 185 meters long. I hit my tee shot with a slight draw, sending it out of bounds. Slightly disappointed, I hit my third from the tee. It went straight at the pin, so I’m thinking good chance still for a bogey. Then I see the group in front come running back, arms in the air and then pointing at the hole. My head sunk and the cursing started. Never having had a hole in one, I still haven’t, but can say I’ve had a great par, after holing out from the tee. By the time I got back to the clubhouse, everyone had heard the story, which made it even worse.

    So not only did I miss out on my first hole in one, but also a more remarkable feat of having two members from the same group, having holes in one on the same day. I’m usually a glass half full sought of person, but I can’t get any joy out of this one. It certainly was “The Big Miss”

    So I haven’t had a hole in one, but I did win a golf buggy with the story (this was letter of the month in a local golf magazine).

    • The Itinerant Golfer

      Great story AussieGolfQuest!!! Very reminiscent of Fred Couples par on the 17th at Sawgrass back in 1999.

  • Barry

    Father Norton woke up Sunday morning and realizing it was an exceptionally beautiful and sunny early spring day, decided he just had to play golf. So he told the Associate Pastor that he was feeling sick and persuaded him to say Mass for him that day. As soon as the
    Associate Pastor left the room, Father Norton headed out of town to a golf course about forty miles away. This way he knew he wouldn’t accidentally meet anyone he knew from his parish. Setting up on the first tee, he was alone. After all, it was Sunday morning and everyone else was in church!
    At about this time, Saint Peter leaned over to the Lord while
    looking down from the heavens and exclaimed, “You’re not going to let him get away with this, are you?” the Lord sighed, and said, “No, I guess not.” Just then Father Norton hit the ball and it shot
    straight towards the pin, dropping just short of it, rolled up and fell into the hole.
    IT WAS A 420 YARD HOLE IN ONE! St. Peter was astonished. He looked at the Lord and asked, “Why did you let him do that?”
    the Lord smiled and replied, “Who’s he going to tell?”

  • Barry

    OK – Thanks for continuing my 5 minutes of fame. Last year I saw Dr Gil Morgan in Florida. I told him that the first hole in one I witnessed was his. I continued by saying I did not see it but instead heard it as it hit the flag stick on the fly. As I started to say the grounds crew spent a lot of time repairing the cup, he interrupted and said, “that was in the 1978 PGA”. I hope I will still be able to remember mine 35 years from now!!!

  • Mark

    Barry-

    I am sure you won’t forget it! Looking forward to seeing you in Augusta soon.

    Mark

  • Josh Parks

    I saw an “ace” last year at a practice round at the Masters where Martin Kaymer skipped it off the lake at 16 and it rolled into the cup.

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  • Will

    I’ve been lucky enough to have two aces. My first was when I was only 12. I was by myself and was paired with 3 other adults who I’m sure at the time weren’t thrilled sbout being paired with a kid. However, on the 3rd hole of a muni course in Cincinnati. I hit a wedge from 120 yards and it took one bounce, hit the stick and dropped. The other “strangers” went nuts. We completed the round and they came in the clubhouse and told everyone they saw about my shot. For being just a kid, I was on cloud nine and had that big man on campus feel.

    My second happened on an executive course when I was playing with a friend. We were 17 and juniors in high school. We had been paired with an older gentleman who struggled with his game, but you could tell he truly enjoyed playing playing the game of golf. The ace came on about the 15th hole where I knocked in a wedge from about 140 yards and I spun it back in. My buddy an I highs fived, but the older man stood speechless. He went on to say thst it was a dream of his to witness a hole-in-one and that this was the very first one he ad ever seen. While a hole in one is a lot of fun to have yourself, the feeling seeing that man so happy because of something I did is something I will never forget. The hole in one is such an amazing yet lucky feat in the game of golf!

    • The Itinerant Golfer

      Thanks for sharing Will. I have witnessed three aces and had a buddy get one in the group in front of me. In each case I think I was more excited about it than the guy who hit the shot!!! If you can’t have one yourself the next best thing is seeing someone else get one!!!