The character of the 16th hole at Halifax West End GC has dramatically changed since I first joined the club is 1988. Back then it was a extremely tough par 4 generally played into the wind, if you got a par you would be very pleased.
Obviously the challenge of the hole has changed slightly with the par changing, but with the ditch and the pond it makes life a little tricky taking on the green for your 2nd/3rd shot.
For this player the tee shot is the most risky aspect of the hole, they must take on the corner or alternatively slide it round the corner with a fade (lefties a draw). If the wrong line is chosen or the ball doesn’t react the way which you expected it will leave you deep in the trees. If you execute the tee shot correctly then it leaves a relatively short iron to the green. If you do miss hit your tee shot, the best course of action would be to lay up on your favored distance to give you the best chance to knock it close to try make birdie.
For players who don’t carry the ball far this hole is a genuine 3 shoter and the best course of action is to play it like that. Choose a club of the tee that keeps the ball short of the trees on the corner, this may still be a driver. But there is no use using your driver if the tree on the corner block you out and you have to play a lofted club over the corner. Also if you play short of the trees the fairway tends to kick the ball to the left. Now you are the perfect position to progress the ball as far up the fairway as you can to make your 3rd shot easier.
For the medium length hitters the 16th posses many issues with all the hazards coming into play, and you also have to make some courageous decisions. The drive is the 1st of your problems, you aren’t long enough to fly the ball over the corner. However you hit it long enough to go into the trees at the far side of the fairway if you hit it too straight. You have to skirt with the edge of the tree on the corner. If you have hit the tee shot as you wished then you are left with a decision. Go for it or not. On all par 5 there is a point of no return, and the 16th is no different. By this I mean, do I have enough club to comfortably carry the trouble in front of the green. Many a good card has been ruined by over reaching yourself. If you can pull off the shot 7 out of 10 times go for it, trust your ability and take the risk. Or if you have got a good card, or you don’t have the confidence to pull off the shot the sensible play is lay up. On the lay-up give yourself your favorite distance, this way you are able to attack the pin, get it close and walk away with a comfortable birdie.
Whichever style of player you are, I would always try to keep the ball under the flag, this will give you the easiest putt. The most dangerous pin on the 16th is front 3rd, invariably you always run through to the middle 3rd of the green. This will leave you with a treacherous downhill putt, on some occasions the best leave would be to aim for the front edge distance on your GPS. It will give you the best position to convert your 4th shot, even if its a short chip up the slope.
I hope the following information will help you score better on the 16th.
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