Wide World Of Golf: Glaze-ing a new trail

Later this month in central Oregon, what was once old will be new again.

At Black Butte Ranch, the resort is getting ready for the grand re-opening of the redesigned and remodeled Glaze Meadow golf course.

In it's 35th year, Glaze Meadow has stood the test of time, but time had also taken its toll on the Gene 'Bunny' Mason designed layout.

"We needed to fix all our features, our tees, our greens....we just needed a lot fixed," says Black Butte Director of Golf Jeff Fought. "So we first started with the idea of getting everything fixed. And we decided we'd explore doing something different, and opening the golf course up. the trees had been really overgrown."

If you've played Glaze before, you'll notice the differences right off the bat. For starters, the brand new first tee-box, which looks directly down toward the first green. The removal of trees behind that green show the water feature, which you were never able to see before.

"Obviously, number one was our number one hole we needed to fix. You started with a 5-iron, and then you hit an 8-iron, then you hit a wedge into the green, with trees in the middle of the fairway," explains Fought. "So we decided that we wanted to get away from some of the quirkiness of that hole, and we decided to take the tees up the hill, make a little dog leg par four.

"We opened up the back of it, so you could see to the back of it and out to the water and out to our beautiful meadows. And it's just turned out to really be special."

The $3.75 million project came in on time and on budget according to Fought, and the early reviews are nothing but positive.

"I liked the course before, but that was because i was used to it," says Nick Robertson, who has played it for 30 years. "A lot of people didn't like it, because you were constantly behind a tree. A tree shouldn't be a hazard necessarily right off of the tee. So now, the course is open."

The new wider fairways make the course more forgiving, and wetland areas have been reworked and improved, making the golfing experience here as good as it's ever been.

"Right now, we feel like we're in a position to keep it going for a long period of time," says Fought. "And not having to apologize for anything."

The more open layout means more mountain views in almost any direction, and the upgraded infrastructure ensures that Glaze Meadow will continue to stand the test of time in the future--just like the famous Black Butte.