Master the Par 3s

Taming the Trickiest Holes at Eagle Ridge

As I stood on the tee box of Eagle Ridge’s famous par-3 6th hole, a bead of sweat formed on my brow. The green sat perched atop a steep slope, guarded by a deep bunker on the left. The wind was whipping, making club selection a complete guessing game. This was no ordinary par 3 – this was a true test of nerve and skill.

Par 3s at championship courses like Eagle Ridge can make or break a round. [1] They require precision, focus, and the ability to adapt on the fly. But with the right strategy and mindset, you can start to master these tricky one-shotters and save precious strokes.

In this in-depth guide, I’ll share my best tips and insights for tackling the par 3s at Eagle Ridge. From proper club selection to course management, we’ll cover everything you need to know to take your short game to the next level. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a high-handicapper, these strategies will have you sticking it close and rolling in more birdies in no time.

Embrace the Challenge

Let’s be honest – par 3s can be humbling. One errant shot and your dreams of a stress-free par are dashed. But that’s part of what makes them so thrilling. At Eagle Ridge, the par 3s force you to bring your A-game, or risk watching your scorecard balloon.

The 4th hole is a prime example. Measuring a daunting 240 yards from the tips, it’s the longest par 3 on the course. [1] With bunkers guarding the front and a severely sloped green, precision is an absolute must. Hit it long or offline, and you’re staring down a brutal up-and-down just to save bogey.

But that’s where the true excitement lies. There’s nothing quite like the rush of hitting the perfect shot, threading the needle and sticking it close. Stick the landing, and you’ve got a golden opportunity for an easy birdie. Fail, and you’ll be kicking yourself all the way to the next tee.

The key is to embrace the challenge. Don’t shy away from these demanding one-shotters – relish the opportunity to showcase your skills. Approach each par 3 with a plan, remain poised under pressure, and trust your swing. Do that, and you’ll start to tame even the most fearsome short holes at Eagle Ridge.

Club Selection is King

When it comes to par 3s, proper club selection is paramount. Choose the wrong club, and you could be looking at a big number. But nail the distance, and you’re setting yourself up for an easy look at birdie.

Take the 16th hole, for example. Measuring 170 yards, it’s the perfect distance for a well-struck mid-iron. But with a pond guarding the front of the green and a severe slope from right-to-left, you need to be precise. [1] A shot that comes up short will find the water, while one that’s too long will careen off the back.

That’s why I always take the time to carefully assess the situation before pulling the trigger. I’ll consider factors like wind, green firmness, and hole location to determine the ideal club. Maybe it calls for a smooth 7-iron, or perhaps a little more club is needed to carry the trouble. The key is to avoid guesswork and commit fully to the shot at hand.

And don’t be afraid to experiment, either. If your standard club isn’t quite enough, consider bumping up to the next one. Or if the wind is howling, maybe you need to throttle down a bit. Stay adaptable, trust your yardage, and swing with confidence. Do that, and you’ll start sticking more greens in regulation on these tricky par 3s.

Keep it Simple on 12

No discussion of par 3 mastery would be complete without addressing the iconic 12th hole at Eagle Ridge. Measuring a deceptive 155 yards, this hole has crushed the dreams of many a would-be champion. [1]

The key here is to keep it simple. Don’t try to be a hero and challenge the right-side pin – that’s a one-way ticket to Rae’s Creek. Instead, play safe to the middle of the green and give yourself an uphill birdie look. It may not be the most exciting play, but it’s the surest path to par.

I witnessed this firsthand a few years back during the Eagle Ridge Invitational. I’ll never forget watching helplessly as several of the tournament leaders tried to navigate that treacherous right pin position. One by one, their balls splashed into the water, opening the door for an unheralded underdog to steal the title.

The moral of the story? Discretion is the better part of valor on the 12th. Trust your club, swing with confidence, and take your medicine if things go awry. Par may not be the most glamorous outcome, but it’s infinitely better than the dreaded triple bogey. Stay patient, execute your plan, and watch the birdies start to pile up elsewhere on the scorecard.

Master the Slopes

At Eagle Ridge, the par 3s aren’t just about distance control – they’re a masterclass in green reading and speed control. These putting surfaces are notoriously tricky, with slopes and undulations that can send even the most well-struck shots careening off line.

Take the 6th hole, for example. From the tee, the green appears relatively flat and straightforward. But step up to your ball, and you’ll quickly realize it’s anything but. [1] That putting surface is a rollercoaster, with a severe left-to-right tilt that can make two-putting a real challenge.

The key is to take the time to thoroughly study each green before pulling the trigger. Carefully observe the contours, noting any major ridges or tiers that could influence your ball’s path. Then, choose a target line that allows for some margin for error. Even if you miss the perfect read, you’ll still be left with a makable par putt.

And don’t forget about speed control, either. These greens can be lightning-fast, especially if the wind is up. Leaving your first putt short is a surefire way to compound your troubles, so be sure to give it a little extra oomph. Conversely, blowing it past the hole is an equally costly mistake.

The best way to master these tricky putting surfaces? Get in some serious practice time on the practice green. Work on your lag putting, honing your speed and distance control. And don’t be afraid to get creative, trying out different reads and stroking the ball at varying velocities. The more comfortable you get navigating these slopes, the more birdies you’ll start to see roll in.


The par 3s at Eagle Ridge may be the course’s biggest challenge, but they’re also its greatest thrill. These one-shotters demand precision, focus, and the ability to adapt on the fly. But with the right mindset and strategies, you can start to tame even the trickiest short holes.

Whether it’s nailing your club selection, keeping it simple on 12, or mastering the slopes, the keys to par 3 dominance are all about preparation and execution. Embrace the challenge, trust your swing, and stay poised under pressure. Do that, and those heart-pounding par 3s will start to feel like a walk in the park.

So the next time you step up to the tee at Eagle Ridge, remember: this is your chance to shine. Approach each par 3 with a plan, swing with confidence, and watch those scores start to tumble. Master the art of the one-shotter, and you’ll be well on your way to conquering the course. Good luck, and enjoy the ride!

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