The 13th at Heritage Highlands Features Back to Back Circus Shots

By Shane Sharp, Contributor

TUCSON - Every hole at Arthur Hill's layout at Heritage Highlands throws a little something different at the first time visitor to the course. Sunken greens, slippery fairways, and elevated tee boxes will oftentimes leave you guessing about the hole that you just played - guessing, as in, "did that really just happen?"

No hole at Heritage Highlands will boggle the mind to the extent that the par-4, 13th hole can. Dubbed "Arthur's Hill", after its creator, the 13th is a guessing game for the first time player from the time he or she steps into the tee box. A sign at the base of the hole gives the yardage to the top of hills, but the step incline distorts all accurate perceptions of this hole.

The Hole:

The 13th Hole at Heritage Highlands - Arthur's Hill. A 359 yard par-4 from the tips. 289 yards from the front tees.

Architect: Arthur Hills, 1997

The Layout: From the tee box, you look straight up hill at the fairway, and anything beyond the crest of the incline is blind. Make sure the party ahead of you is off the fairway. If your tee shot makes it over the hill, you will be looking downhill at a hidden green that is protected on the right by a rock outcropping. The green is large and will hold many miss hit balls. True to Hill's design strategy at Heritage, there is ample bail out area to the front right of the hole.

The Strategy: By all means, is to get the ball up the hill, and get it up straight. Anything to the left will be in the rocks, but does have a chance of ricocheting back into the fairway. Anything too far right will be out of play in the lateral hazard. The long hitter may want to think about taking a three wood on this hole as you will run our of fairway quick with a powerful stroke.

The Average Golfer: Should be playing from the green tees, so a good three wood will get the ball over the hill. If you do fade the ball a bit, there is a bit more leeway to the right, but it is tenuous at best. If you need to use a low iron to keep it straight, by all means use it.

Don't Play: Obviously, anything too far to the left or right. If you are going to meltdown on the hole, meltdown to the left and take your chances with the ball squirting back out of the rocks. Also, get the ball up the hill at all costs. An approach shot from the incline is all but impossible to land on the green

Play the Hole: In the evening when the shadows off the rocks are spectacular.

Wanna Play?

Classification: Public
Guest Policy: Open
Dress Code: No denim, collared shirt and bermuda shorts required.
Season: Open all year
Tee Times: Accepted 7 days in advance.
Earliest Time To Call: 7:00 AM
Pro Shop Phone: (520)579-7000
Pro Shop Opens: 7:00 AM

Shane SharpShane Sharp, Contributor

Shane Sharp is vice president of Buffalo Communications, a golf and lifestyle media agency. He was a writer, senior writer and managing editor of from 1997 to 2003.

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