About 1912, a player qualifying for the Shawnee Invitational for Women took 166 strokes on the 130-yard 16th hole. Her tee shot found the Binniekill River. She went into a boat, rowed by her husband, and tried hitting out as the ball floated downstream (at that time, balls floated in water). She finally hit out a mile and a half away - and landed in the woods.
In his Grand Slam year of 1930, Bobby Jones had fortune smile upon him at the U.S. Open at Interlachen Country Club. In the second round, just as Jones was trying to reach the par-five ninth hole in two, a couple of small girls ran out from the crowd. Jones half-topped his shot, which skipped twice across a lake and finished 30 yards short of the hole. He made birdie and won the Open.
Greg Norman's ball airmailed the 1Oth green during the 1980 World Match Play at Wentworth, England, hit a spectator in the head, and bounced back on the green. He made par and went on to win by one hole.
Augusta National's par-three 12th dampened Tom Weiskopf's spirits and chances at the 1980 Masters. His tee shot found Rae's Creek, and he proceeded to drown pitch after pitch until he eventually got his ball onto the green and putted out for a 13.
At the 1993 Colonial Invitational, Ian Baker-Finch decided he could play a ball that lay just inside the margin of a water hazard rather than take a penalty. Instead of simply removing his shoes and socks and rolling up his pants, the Aussie stripped down to his boxer shorts, waded in, and executed the recovery to a roar of applause.
The U.S. Open record for highest score on a par-four hole betongs Ray Ainsley, whose 19 on the 16th hole at Cherry Hills Country Club in 1938 still stands. The California pro hit his second into Little Dry Creek and, as the curent carried the ball along, he kept swinging away.
Speaking about the 16th hole at Cypress Point, a par three that plays over an inlet of the Pacific Ocean, Jimmy Demaret once said' "The nearest point of relief is Honolulu."
The average green needs 5-7,000 gallons of water a week during growing seaason. The average course might get 150,000 gallons a day, while desert courses have been known to take one million gallons daily.
During the second hole of a playoff against Sandy Lyle at the 1987 Players Championship, Jeff Sluman was lining up a slx-foot putt for birdie and victory on the 17th green when suddenly a spectator jumped into the lake. Sluman's concentration was broken and he missed the putt. Lyle won on the next hole.
In everyday play, at least three people are known to have fallen into the water around the TPC Ponte Vedra 17th's island green, either while backing up to read the breaks or while running excitedly after sinking a putt.
Curtis Strange might have won the 1985 Masters if he hadn't attempted to play from the edge of Rae's Creek on the 13th hole of the final round. He hit the ball out of the creek only to have it roll back in. Strange scored a 6 on the hole and tied for second in the tournament, two shots behind Bernhard Langer.