Top 10 Golf Holes at Torrey Pines
The US Open is at Torrey Pines in two weeks, June 17th – 20th. The 2008 US Open was one of the greatest of all time. Tiger Woods made an amazing birdie putt on Sunday on #18 to tie Rocco Mediate. Then the 18 hole Monday playoff was not enough. Tiger finally beat Rocco on the first hole of sudden-death and their 19th hole of the day. I thought it would be a great opportunity to rank the Top 10 holes at Torrey Pines. Now keep in mind that Torrey Pines has two golf courses – North and South. The PGA’s Farmers Insurance Open is played on both courses every January. However, the US Open is only played on the South Course.
10) Hole #16, South Course, Par 3, 227 yards – The two sets of tees make it a completely different hole depending on which one you play. The daily amateurs typically play the right tees. They are much easier. No carry over the ravine. A beautiful backdrop of the Pacific Ocean. The offshore winds typically make it play much longer. For the pros, they play the left tees. It is a difficult shot over the ravine. The stands for the fans blocks the wind a little bit. However if you miss to the left you have to deal with several large bunkers and a large torrey pine tree.
9) Hole #4, South Course, Par 4, 490 yards – A few years ago, this hole would have not made the list. During the recent remodel they pushed the tee back and to the left. It now puts you right next to the cliff which is a 100+ foot drop to the beach below. They also enlarged the bunker in the front right. This is one of the most beautiful holes to sit and watch the pros play by. You have an amazing view of the blue Pacific Ocean.
8) Hole #5, North Course, Par 5, 525 yards – This Par 5 is a welcome sight after three long Par 4’s, known as the Undertow. The Undertow is one of the hardest three hole stretches on the PGA Tour. A relatively short Par 5 is a slight dog-leg left. It offers one of the most unique views on the golf course, the red bluffs of Torrey Pines State Park.
7) Hole #12, North Course, Par 3, 203 yards – This is probably the most underrated and fun holes on both courses. It is a shorter par 3 that forces you to hit over a canyon. Your shot is opposite of most holes as it goes east towards the clubhouse and away from the ocean.
6) Hole #7, South Course, Par 4, 462 yards – This dogleg right is the hardest rated hole on the South Course. It is also the hole that Tiger finally beat Rocco in their epic playoff in 2008. I love the 2nd shot into a green framed with torrey pine trees and the Pacific Ocean in the background.
5) Hole #16, North Course, Par 4, 393 yards – This uphill par 4 has the ocean and cliff all along the left side. This hole used to be on the front 9 until they flipped the nine’s during the 2016 Tom Weiskopf renovation. Holes 14-16 are the best holes to play during a twilight round while the sun is setting. You are guaranteed to get the photo of a lifetime.
4) Hole #15, North Course, Par 3, 202 yards – This is the signature hole on the North Course. It offers players a spectacular view of La Jolla and the Pacific Ocean. Playing downhill this beautiful hole is protected by a bunker in front of a steeply back to front sloped green. The elevated tees lead to the best “selfie” location on the course.
3) Hole #18, South Course, Par 5, 570 yards – This is where Tiger made “the putt” to tie Rocco. Tons of history here. It is a definite risk/reward hole. It is the only hole with water on the South Course. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday most players lay-up, but on Sunday when players need an eagle to post a low score they tend to go for it in two more often.
2) Hole #13, South Course, Par 5, 621 yards – This is just an awesome hole. The back tee over hangs the cliff and a walking trail to Blacks Beach (San Diego’s infamous nudist beach). Players have to hit over a 250 yard ravine while missing out-of-bounds to the left and large bunkers to the right. Players then need to decide to go for the elevated green in two or lay-up below which leads to a difficult blind third shot. The multiple green side bunkers make it one of the most difficult and prettiest greens on the course.
1) Hole #3, South Course, Par 3, 201 yards – One of the shortest par 3’s on the course and one of the hardest. This is Torrey Pines signature hole. It is one of the most picturesque holes in all of golf. An elevated tee shot towards a green that has a ravine to the left and the Pacific Ocean long can lead to many bad shots and high scores.
What is your favorite hole at Torrey Pines?