Grayhawk Talon Course: No. 13 - "Heaven or Hell"

By Shannon Gazze, Contributor

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - Feeling lucky at No. 13? Bring out the big dog. But remember as you unsheath your driver and head to the tee box, they don't call this hole "Heaven or Hell" for nothing.

Playing 277 yards from the middle (Palo Verde) tees, this short par 4 will tempt the most cautious golfers to go for the green. When you realize that any lay-up shot may be just as difficult a feat to accomplish, you are all the more inclined to test the hole's mettle.

This aptly named hole is ripe for the taking by long hitters. There is nothing in between you and the generously sized green but a man made canyon that leaves you with about 240 yards to carry.

Hence, the heaven part of the title. Birdie Heaven, that is.

But beware, the unforgiving Scottsdale desert surrounds the back of the green, awaiting the drives of those who are overly ambitious.

The right front of the green is well-protected by pot bunkers while a sand trap and a couple more pots are cozied up to the left side of the green.

And these are no ordinary pots. They are bolstered with wood planks for support, which puts you in the mind of a Mexican prison if you are unlucky enough to find yourself in them. And make no mistake: If you ball falls to the bottom of one of these wells, you ARE in jail.

Hence the hell part of the title. Triple-Bogey hell, to be more precise.

If you are feeling timid and wish to bail out, Jeff in the Grayhawk clubhouse suggests a six-iron to the left side of the typically tight fairway. That will leave you a short iron over the canyon and give you a clear look at the pin. Jeff also confirmed what I already expected: "Most people end up in Hell."

As for me, I went for the gusto, but wound up in a grass bunker right of Birdie Heaven. I somehow escaped Triple-Bogey Hell and jumped the first bogey train to Purgatory.

Shannon Gazze, Contributor

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