Over the weekend I made a couple of visits to Cruden Bay to check up on the progress of the winter improvement works being overseen by architects Mackenzie & Ebert. As a member and having got to know the Course Superintendent more over the last year or so I am getting regular updates on the work being done which is great.
Hawklaw where the work is taking place on the 9th & 10th
The very windy and very, very wet November so far has made access up Hawklaw (the hill to the 9th pictured) extremely difficult.
Work continues despite challenging conditions
It’s worth adding that the majority of materials including the sand has been sourced on site and that the turf for the new 9th green is the same as its predecessor. Furthermore the material being scrapped away in front of the 16th is being recycled for part of the 9th & 10th works. While commendable shuttling between sites on the 9th, 10th and 16th to the natural sand quarry beside the 7th tee has visibly left its mark on the course. With that said the project has the luxury of using the now redundant 9th fairway to transfer material. A small section of fairway used to traffic machinery up Hawklaw short of the 8th green (see above) will need to be turfed once the work is completed.
The 9th green is laid and as the video shows the new infinity green with pot bunkers green side left has helped transform the mundane ninth into something much more memorable. Work is also well underway back down the fairway with drainage works and turfing on the far left helping shape the fairway along the cliff shelf.
New 9th tee at Cruden Bay Golf Club
The new ninth tee box at Cruden Bay might be one you see a lot of in the coming years with views both of the bay and bathtub 14th green directly below. The 360° panoramic makes the old 9th tee look somewhat average.
Now that I’ve illustrated how out my depth I am for both golf architecture and course management discussion I will go back to being a student of the game. Do stay posted for more updates and perhaps even a word from those responsible for helping turn Cruden Bay from good to great this winter.