U.S. Open

Pinehurst Resort & Country Club (Course No. 2)

The Loop

The Last Tree Falls

I like trees because they seem more resigned to the way they have to live than other things do. Willa Cather

You thought the lumberjacks were finished at Oakmont? Not quite. In the June issue Ron Whitten chronicles the massive (5,000-plus trees) clearing at Oakmont, much of the work down in the dark of night. The latest specimen, an old sycamore, fell Monday, between the clubhouse and the 18th green. This was a day job by Davy Tree Expert Company. It will make room for more grandstands and presumably give the green a bit more breathing room.

Gerry Dulac has the story on the Post-Gazette site today:

__The fallen tree was the lone sycamore that stood in a cluster of six trees -- known as the Oak Grove -- behind the 18th green and 10th tee. Oakmont president Bill Griffin said the tree was removed to allow for more grandstand space behind the final hole. "It was going to be very difficult to build [a grandstand] around that tree to get the seating arrangements around the 18th green," Griffin said. "With that tree in place, we were limited to 2,100 spectators [in the grandstand]."


Rumors that these added seats would be for Oakmont members only are false, says a club source.

The deceased sycamore:


—Bob Carney

(Photo: Stephen Szurlej)