Cybergolf Talks Pacific Gales Golf with Project Manager Troy Russell

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Pacific Gales golf landscape and ocean bluff grasses with view north toward Cape Blanco point — photo by Brian Oar

Longtime golf journalist and Pacific Northwest blogger Tony Dear (The Bellingham Golfer) has posted a wide-ranging golf interview on Cybergolf with Pacific Gales Project Manager Troy Russell about the exciting new project along the spectacular stretch of Southern Oregon coast near Port Orford.

During the interview, Russell offers insights into the permitting process ahead, the scale of the project and members of the local construction team who will help bring the design by Dave Esler and Jim Haley to life on what is considered one of the more exciting golf landscapes in North America. Russell also draws on his expertise as a former superintendent at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort to draw some comparisons of the Pacific Gales land on Knapp Ranch to the golfing mecca 30 minutes north that brought golfing fame to this part of the Northwest.

There are obviously a lot of similarities,” he says. “They’re both great coastal sites with a lot of natural sand. But because this is a working cattle ranch, the 330 acres of Knapp Ranch that we will be using for the course are a lot less overgrown. Bandon Dunes was wall-to-wall gorse that took David Kidd and the rest of the crew a long time to clear. The gorse at Pacific Gales is limited to the south and west of the site and isn’t nearly so dense or intrusive.

“Of all the courses at the Bandon Dunes Resort, I suppose Pacific Gales will be most like Bandon Dunes because they are both set on plateaus above the ocean. And the dropoff at the south end of Bandon Dunes resembles that at the north end of Pacific Gales. But the scenery is actually better here than at Bandon. At Pacific Gales, we have the Cape Blanco Lighthouse to the north, and the Port Orford Heads to the south. And due east is the Coastal Range and the Rogue River Siskiyou National Forest

“And the plan for Pacific Gales is somewhat different to Bandon Dunes too. Mike Keiser wanted to build a big resort; Pacific Gales will be a course and a clubhouse — there are no plans for on-site lodging. So Mike and his main advisor Howard McKee had a tough time getting the necessary permits. Thankfully Howard did a brilliant job securing them. These things are never a foregone conclusion, but the process for Pacific Gales should be a little easier.”

Read the complete interview at Cybergolf or The Bellingham Golfer.

Pacific Gales Golf Project Off to Amazing Start

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Pacific Gales golf property north view toward the Cape Blanco lighthouse. Photo by Brian Oar.

All we can say is thank you. When the Pacific Gales golf development team decided to jump into announcing the project with both feet — via a complete website, video and social media presence on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram — we never dreamed this spectacular little stretch of land along the picturesque Southern Oregon coast, with its views of Cape Blanco and the Elk River valley, would captivate so many so quickly.

But Pacific Gales has done just that. And after a week’s worth of buzz and well-wishes from golf bucket-list dreamers to major golf media such as Golfweek, Golf Digest, Links Magazine and GolfGetaways, among others, to local Oregon coast newspapers like the Coos Bay World and Curry Coastal Pilot in Brookings, we’ve been humbled by the response — but want everyone to know we’re just getting started.

As designer Dave Esler put it in an interview the other day: “Honestly, we’re a great deal of work away from being compared to anything, but we have a team that has literally been through this before — and that gives us all a lot of confidence. Plus, they’re just a bunch of fun to be around, and the course and the management will no doubt reflect that.”

Certainly, we’re already having fun, and we hope the website, photos, social media and video reflect that. And if we could have every one of you out to play golf tomorrow, we certainly would. Thanks for the support, and continue to keep an eye on Pacific Gales for an inside look at how an amazing piece of land in an unforgettable setting becomes a memorable golf experience.

Golf Digest says ‘Keep an eye on Pacific Gales’

The Pacific Gales golf development team awoke Friday morning to a cool new story in the Local Knowledge section of Golf Digest by Ashley K Mayo, long a favorite follow of golfers on Twitter and Instagram. In the piece headlined “Pacific Gales: A new course to keep an eye on” she discusses how the Pacific Gales project is a bit of a different animal in golf, kicking off our web and social media efforts so early on in the planning process, essentially giving golfers the opportunity to follow along every step of the way in anticipation of a late 2015 / early 2016 opening.

“Perhaps the most exciting aspect of this venture is Pacific Gales’ social media presence,” Mayo writes. “The soon-to-be golf course has Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts that offer a glimpse into its creation.”

She even posts a few Tweets from Golf Digest Architecture Editor Ron Whitten discussing what he’s seen and heard about Pacific Gales as well as a couple of our first posts to Instagram, which include some spectacular views of Cape Blanco in the distance from the northwest corner of the property located just north of Port Orford on the Southern Oregon coast, about 30 minutes south of Bandon, Oregon.

“I can’t think of any other significant new project that has been so transparent,” she adds. “It’ll be fun to see this course develop, in real time, from start to finish.”

Obviously we can’t agree more. We’re certainly excited to get started and working hard to build the best possible golf course we can on this amazing stretch of golfing landscape.

Visit the Golf Digest Local Knowledge section online for more. And follow Ashley K Mayo on Twitter and Instagram.

Links Magazine Adds Pacific Gales to “The Buzz”

“Pacific Gales looks slated to take a place among the nation’s finest layouts, and further establish the southern Oregon coast as a must-play destination,” writes golf journalist and author Brian McCallen in The Buzz section of Links Magazine. McCallen was Senior Editor at GOLF Magazine for 16 years and has traveled the world covering golf (he authored the book “Golf Resorts of the World” among others). Read the story here and more of McCallen’s work on the A Position website.

Pacific Gales: “Golf’s Next Ace”

“The World” newspaper in Coos Bay — the Bandon/Port Orford area’s largest newspaper — ran an excellent front-page story today exploring the announcement of the Pacific Gales golf project, quoting Project Manager Troy Russell and Designer Dave Esler and providing insight into the county/state permitting process. Notably, “The World” story points out that because Pacific Gales isn’t a proposed resort and won’t require changing the county ordinance, developers hope the process will go smoothly, according to Russell. Read the full story on The World’s website.

Golfweek’s Forecaddie ‘Blown Away’ by Pacific Gales

In the Nov. 22 issue of Golfweek, now available digitally for download via iTunes, the popular Forecaddie section reports to having been “blown away” by Pacific Gales during a recent sneak preview to the site of the new golf construction project along the Southern Oregon coast from the mind of Jim Haley and Dave Esler. For the full story on Page 6, download the issue (with LPGA legend Karrie Webb on the cover) at the Golfweek Magazine for iTunes on the Apple Store.