There are four weeks a year that as a golf fanatic, I cannot wait for. This is one of them.
It is US Open week and beginning today just south of us in University Place, Washington State, at the absolutely astounding Chambers Bay Golf Club, is the 115th edition of the US Open.
Chambers Bay is a public course that has been repurposed from a gravel quarry and the sightlines into Puget Sound are breathtaking. Being a public course, golfers like you and I have had and will have a chance to play this beauty, and let me tell you from the first-hand experience of playing this gem, you will not be disappointed.
Chambers Bay is a feast for the eyes but also for the mind of any golfer. You can’t just lash the ball out in to the fairway and then lash one onto the green. You must think your way around this course, and you must do so while enduring a walk that is nearly twice the normal golf course.
Chambers Bay is a walk only course. No power carts are allowed on the property. What is normally a four to five mile stroll on your usual golf course is nearly eight miles at Chambers, with elevation changes of nearly five hundred feet.
Is this course a challenge? Certainly, but these are the best golfers on the planet, and the reason why they are great is because they have learned not just how to bomb the ball, but how to work it. They know how to play long runners, bump and run and high with spin. They know tricks some of us cannot even imagine, and they will need it to win.
We will see some big numbers this week, but we will also see magic. The winner of this tourney will be the one with the most imagination, the most smarts, and the most guts. It will be his job to determine when to use what and that is what will separate him from his peers.
My gut tells me a shot maker like Phil Mickelson may make a little history this weekend, and if he does it will be the most celebrated win of his career, it will give him the career grand slam, and it will make Chambers Bay the place that everyone needs to play.