Hello Friends and Family,

Link to this year's index by clicking here.

Maui on my Mind, Part 8

Back to Maui — and the Plantation Golf Course. This is one of two golf courses at Kapalua — the other is the Bay Course. For a while, there were three — the third one was my favorite, the Village Course. The latter was closed and allowed to go fallow but is now part of the hiking trails at Kapalua. The cart paths provide good access and you can imagine what it was like when it was an active golf course. In fact, I shared photos of the newly abandoned course in previous issues. If you are interested, click here, here and here.

This building is the pro shop which also contains the Plantation House Restaurant, one of my favorites. One change since my last visit is valet parking — and it looks like it is mandatory — but it is not. I parked my rental card in the Poor Golfers Parking Area.

The Plantation Course is home to (what is now called) The Sentry Tournament of Champions which is the first golf tournament of each year. Even if you are not a golf fan, you should tune in for a few minutes to take in the scenery — the broadcast always finds time for surfers and Humpback whales.

This is, of course, the trophy awarded to the winner of the tournament. Dustin Johnson won the 2018 championship. One of the reasons that golf fans tend to tune in (in addition to the gorgeous scenery) is that only the golfers who won a tournament in the previous season are eligible. This is one tournament that I would love to see in person (bucket list item).

Just steps from the pro shop is the practice green. In my opinion, the greens at Kapalua are probably the most challenging that I have ever played. One year, I came a day before my scheduled round and practiced here for a couple of hours. Unfortunately, after all that practice time, I was no more confident of sinking a putt than I was before I began practicing.

That reminds me, the reason I stopped by the Plantation Course on this trip was that I had read that they will be refurbishing the course once the Tournament is complete. It will be closed for three months or so. I confirmed this factoid with the pro shop — so I guess you shouldn't plan on playing here until April or so.

I love the scenery. This is the first hole. The golfer who just teed off is female and, naturally, is using the lady's tees. The tallest trees are Cook's Pines and the island in the distance is Moloka‘i.

A few minutes later, the group in the previous photo had reached the green, way down there.

If I had eyes in the back of my head, I would be looking at the Plantation House Restaurant. It's a great place to grab lunch and watch the golfers as they tee off and as they finish their rounds.

The golfers in the center of this photo are playing the ninth hole. In the distance you can see the condominiums at Kapalua — a nice place to stay when you visit, albeit a bit pricey.

Uphill, you can see a number of private homes. Jim Furyk, one of the elite PGA golfers, used to own a home up here. When I played the course, I imagined him coming out of his home (even though I did not know which was his) and waving at the amateur golfers as they played past his place. I understand he sold his residence a few years ago. Why, Jim, why?

This is the famous (or is it infamous) 18th fairway. It is so steep downhill that the pros can hit the ball a mile — it just keeps rolling, rolling, rolling. It is officially listed at 663 yards from the Championship tees and makes for some exciting finishes.

Finally, here is another view of the pro shop and Plantation House Restaurant. I wonder if it will look the same after the renovation.

To be continued...

Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc. — www.bdavidcathell.com