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Already drawing rave reviews for its renovation, Bayonet Golf Course has ushered in a new and exciting era for the landmark golf course that overlooks the famed Monterey Peninsula.
Certain to provide both challenges and inspiration to golfers for generations to come, Bayonet has been re-sculpted by award-winning golf course architect Gene Bates.
Retaining its classic, tree-lined character, while showcasing Bates’ elegant bunkering and graceful greens, the new Bayonet offers expanded views of the bay. Although the overall length of Bayonet has increased only 16 yards, the strategic and visual impact created by Bates’ bunkering is immeasurable.
The front nine, which debuted in May of 2007, is different from the original layout in several ways -- mostly notably the order that the holes are played has changed and a spectacular new ninth hole has been created.
The new finisher to the front is an uphill par 4, 476 yards, with a dogleg right. The all-new fairway is lined by numerous young cypress, oak and pine trees – most transplanted from nearby areas of the property. One tree cluster cuts off the right corner, while a bunker pinches the fairway further on the left. The test lies with an all-carry approach, where three staggered bunkers lead up to a broad green that is cut into the crest of the hillside.
Par has not changed on any hole, although the longest par 5 on the course has been shortened from 626 yards to 613 yards. Now the eighth hole, it comes into play right just before the new ninth to create a daunting one-two combination totaling 1,089 yards.
Overall, the addition of Bates’ classic bunkering, punctuated by snow-white sand, and removal of the Kikuyu and poa annua grasses in the fairways and greens have produced a substantial improvement to Bayonet’s playing conditions.
With the removal of the Kikuyu and poa annua, all of the new turf is Jacklin T1 Bentgrass, a type that is superior in density and performance that will allow not only for better roll, but will harmonize with the state-of-the-industry drainage and irrigation systems installed on all 36 holes.
One of the most dramatic design changes to the greens is the more level putting surface on what was the par-4 seventh hole (now the fifth hole on the side). Gone is the drastic, left-to-right dropoff, replaced with a more welcoming target with gentle movement.
Bayonet, which opened in 1954, is steeped in golf and military history. Created on the site of the former Fort Ord by General Robert B. McClure, it was christened in honor of the 7th Infantry Light Fighter Division (nicknamed the “Bayonet Division”).
Always stimulating and in spectacular shape, and with Monterey Bay as its inspiring backdrop, the remodeled Bayonet is ready for the new era to begin.