Did You Know: The most heavenly place at Augusta National is not on the golf course
The Coronavirus pandemic has hit a giant pause button on fans being able to watch golf on TV, and in some cases, even kept people off courses. But while we hunker down and hope for a speedy return to normalcy, we can also use this time as an opportunity to learn more about the game we love. Here’s our latest installment of “Did you know?”
Based off its name alone, Amen Corner has to automatically be considered the most heavenly place at Augusta National. In reality, the most heavenly place isn't even on the golf course.
Magnolia Lane? No. The Champions Locker room? No again. Ok, it must be that spot underneath the massive oak tree in between the clubhouse and the first tee, right? Wrong. 0-for-3.
No, the most heavenly spot is one of the hardest to find, and it's open only to amateurs. Yes, we're talking about the "Crow's Nest," which has been home to amateurs competing in the Masters since the very first small gathering of friends in 1934.
Don't believe us? Just take a look at some of the quotes from those that have stayed there, pulled straight from this incredible 2012 piece on the Crow's Nest from our own Dave Kindred.
"You dream of being there, and when you're there, you go, 'Wow, is this really real?'," says Manny Zerman, who stayed there in 1991.
Brandt Snedeker had a similar feeling. "You're walking on air, like it's not really reality. Everything, the Masters, the place--it's inspiring. I've made no secret how much I love it. If I could win a Masters, I wouldn't care if I ever won another thing. I'd make that deal right now."
"No player, no amateur, no junior wouldn't want this," says Billy Andrade, who accidentally wandered into the Champions Locker Room when he first stayed at the Crow's Nest in 1987, only to be met by an angry Gene Sarazen. "Your goal in life is to get to that peak where you can stay in the Crow's Nest. It's like Bobby Jones has this attic in a big house, and you're a little boy going up there. When you come down, you're grown up."
Former U.S. Amateur winner Bill Campbell once told the Masters Journal that "It was kind of like heaven for a golfer."
To find it, amateurs first need to locate the secret door inside of the clubhouse marked "TELEPHONE." Once there, a second door leads to a staircase, which takes you into the nest. The 30-foot by 40-foot room sits atop the Augusta National clubhouse, and more resembles a college dorm than a luxury hotel. There are four bedrooms, divided off by wooden partitions, and a common area, complete with a small TV, a small couch, a game table and one bathroom. Amateurs do have to pay to stay, though the price is unknown. In 1968, it was just $1 a night, according to 1972 U.S. Amateur winner Marvin "Vinny" Giles III.
There's little doubt the price has changed over the years, but the old-school nature of the Crow's Nest will always remain the same. As Ben Crenshaw perfectly put it in a video profile of the Crow's Nest last year, "pretty nice, this is a pretty nice spot."