Hole No. 1 at Foxglove - Most Interesting Holes Series
By Gretchen Yoder, Manager of Handicapping & Course Rating
Ninth in our OGA series about the Most Interesting Holes is the Par 4, Hole No. 1 Foxglove - Mt. Hood Resort (formerly known as Resort at the Mountain), with tees at 308, 284 and 263. The hole is most known for the large volcanic rock in the center of the fairway about 120 yards away from the green. Tall thick trees line the chute from all tees, putting the rock and the Douglas Fir growing on top, right in the golfer’s path. Other than the most expert golfer who may be able to fly over the rock, anyone playing the hole would have to choose whether to go left or right of the massive stone.
Both options bring their own troubles. The Salmon River flows up the wider left side of the fairway. Tall trees line the incredibly narrow right side. Shots to the left then need to negotiate the green side bunker protecting the front and back left sides. The golfer would have to think about shot length and control direction a bit more than the average golf shot.
The lava rock brings up a very interesting Course Rating subject of what to do when there is a split fairway. In this situation, the right side is so narrow that we don’t even consider that side as an option. The strip of fairway is less than five yards wide. If that were the only option, USGA Course Rating System would call this a forced layup and we would have to bring the golfer back to an area where the fairway is at least 13-15 yards wide.
There aren’t very many true split fairways that OGA rates and each one has different obstacles to consider and multiple ways to assess the situation:
- Stone Creek #9: The right side of the fairway is pretty much ignored for course rating. Conversations with people who play the course on a regular basis say they only play the right side when carts are restricted to cart path only.
- Tetherow #2: Specifically for female golfers, the Scratch woman would take the left side of the rocky outcrop to take advantage of a downhill kick. Bogey golfers would take the right, flatter side so they would not lose yardage by hitting the uphill side of the same hill.
- Waverley #12: The bunker in the middle of the uphill fairway doesn’t change the width very much. We would average both sides of the fairway, but still favor the right side as the fairway tilts to the left.
From Bryce Finnman, PGA Professional at The Resort:
"Looming in the center of the fairway is a very large volcanic rock that was disposed of during the early years of Mount Hood. Today a Douglas Fir has found home to this rock and is growing from the top of the rock. Running down the left of the fairway is the Salmon River, a wild and scenic river that is fed by glacier waters on Mount Hood that annually has salmon spanning in the late fall. The Wee Burn tributary runs parallel to the fairway and allows these native fish to travel up to our waters on the golf course to spawn."
Click here for more information about The Three Nines at Resort at the Mountain
** The first hole at Foxglove - Mt. Hood Resort (formerly known as Resort at the Mountain) earned 111 fan votes to earn ninth-place recognition in the OGA 2017 Edition of the 18 Most Interesting Holes Series contest. Throughout the year Gretchen Yoder, OGA Manager of Course Rating & Handicapping, will explain what makes each hole unique and describe the ideas behind rating these gems.