How to Survive the 18 ft Bunker on the 16th hole at PGA West Stadium Course — The Host Course of This Week’s “The American Express” PGA TOUR Event

Literally, this is a big week for the PGA TOUR at PGA West. The American Express has a killer field. Five out of the top 10, 10 out of the top 20 in the world are teeing it up. Nice!

The course looks perfect thanks to the overseeding and burnt-out rough and surrounds. As usual, the winner will need to take it deep. Birdies rain down in the desert every year.

For those of you who’ve never played PGA West, there are three shots that will make every golfer’s butt pucker, including the pros.

In descending order of puckerness (voted on by our team and friends):

3/ The tee shot on 18

2/ If you lose it left into the greenside bunker on 16

1/ The tee shot to the island green par-3 17

For me, the bunker left of 16 is the toughest shot on the course. Brutal. Even tougher than trying to hit the island that Lee Trevino made famous (thanks Pete Dye!).

What’s crazy is that you can miss it a mile right on 16. But left is where happy golfers go to lose their minds.

So here you go…

Our tips on how to survive if you end up in the hellish bunker left on 16:

Tip #1: First off, don’t hit it in the bunker, ever. Putt from the fairway if you have to.

Tip #2: If in the bunker, pick up your ball and throw it as hard as you can when no one is looking (good luck even throwing it out of the bunker).

Tip #3: Pick your ball up and head to the next tee. Where you will face an island green. Fun.

Just know you’re screwed if you miss it left of the green on 16. And there is no solace knowing that others have come before you. Just pain and suffering and forced humility.

Enjoy these highlights of 16 compliments of the PGA TOUR’s finest!

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