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Lahinch Signature Par 3: The Dell

Eric Bruening

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6240af42f3fd9fdd21207e5045b94e29-.jpgThe 5th hole at Lahinch is perhaps the most well known and talked about holes on the course (and in Ireland), rivaled only by the Par 5 4th Klondyke. The hole measures 154 yards from the tips, with member tees measuring at 145 and women's at 118. The hole plays longer however, as one needs to take enough club to carry the front hill guarding the green.

 

The Dell also plays into the prevailing wind, which can be an advantage as the ball will have a more vertical flight path coming down, minimizing the chance that you'll witness the dreaded sight of seeing your ball land on top of the 30 foot hill.

 

It's green is wide but shallow and angled about 30 degrees off center from the tee box. It also has a subtle two-tier like contour, with the high side being on the left. There is an additional 30 foot dune on the back of the green that the locals commonly use as a backboard.

 

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The Dell green from the 6th tee. The view is from the left of the hole, with the tee shot coming in over the hill on the right.

 

The blind nature of the hole requires a large white stone be placed on top of the hill to mark the days pin placement, as the width of the green allows for many pin placements on different lines.

 

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View from the top of a smaller hill to the right of the hole. The right side, where the pin is in this picture, is deeper and more receptive than the far side, as balls come in over the hill to the left of the photo.

 

Old Tom Morris laid out this hole in the late 1890's, and it has remained untouched through Dr. MacKenzie's re-design in the 1920's and Martin Hawtree's restoration in the late 1990's.

 

It is a truly unique hole that cannot be replicated and gives Lahinch Golf Club a touch of character. It stands unapologetically in a current world where no architect would dare design a similar hole for fear of cries of unfairness.

 

The saying rings true... 'Only in Ireland.'

 

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A glance from short right of the green, displaying the sharp angles the hills have around the green. The steep hill at right in this photo is the hill that is used as a backstop by locals.

 

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The confusing image that greets players on the 5th tee. There are stories of golfers who elected not to take caddies, and ended up playing to the 9th green, which lies on the dunes above and to the right of the 5th green.

 



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