Changes coming to course at Lake of the Pines Golf Club

  • Lake of the Pines

    A photo rendering of the proposed seventh hole, a short 135-yard par three playing across a natural valley

Sean Dudley
By Sean Dudley

Forrest Richardson is to move ahead with a series of changes to the course at Lake of the Pines Golf Club in Auburn, California.

The architect created a masterplan for the club in 2017 and will now oversee the implementation of his suggested alterations to the course.

Current work includes finalising plans to rebuild the seventh and eighteenth greens, as well as the development of a pitching course next to the clubhouse.

“It’s a great testament to the club that they are looking ahead to what will drive new players and create spaces that will keep people involved,” said Richardson. “The idea for a short pitching course with multiple practice greens is certain to become a great hang-out for members and their families.”

The course forms part of a community featuring 1,000 homes and plays around a 250-acre manmade lake. The golf course playing counterclockwise in a complete circle.

Though no architect is officially credited with the design, the Lake of the Pines course does have some rather unique and interesting features. The routing still includes a ‘left’ and ‘right’ ninth hole, which at one time allowed players to play the ‘left’ hole and then drive their cart onto a special ferryboat that would take them across the lake and back to the clubhouse. The ‘right’ hole could be played if they intended to carry on and play the full 18.

“It’s a first for us,” said Richardson. “To be working on a course that does not have any designer at all attributed to the original design. Without having someone in particular to look back on, we can only imagine what was driving some of the design decisions.”

Though records on the course’s history are limited in number, it appears that original developers Western Lake Properties and Boise Cascade, who purchased the community and course, carried out the bulk of the design work in house. This has resulted in a course quite different from the norm.

“There are a few truly unique golf holes, and they deserve to be preserved,” added Richardson. “My goal is to make them better without losing the charm.”