With its untamed surroundings and greens that seem to rise out of the prairie, Wisconsin’s Erin Hills is not what you’d call a traditional golf course, but that’s part of the appeal. It’ll host the 117th U.S. Open June 12-18, the first time the men’s championship has been held in the Badger State (the 2012 Women’s Open was held at Blackwolf Run in Kohler). Here, a few of the things that make Erin Hills a worthy venue.
“This area was formed by glaciers tens of thousands of years ago,” says Jeff Hall—the United States Golf Association’s managing director of open championships—of the rolling terrain. “This land was begging for a golf course.”
The walking-only course was instantly celebrated for its use of the nearly treeless, knoll-filled landscape when it debuted in 2006.
Limited Tee Time
To ensure pristine conditions for the Open, keepers of the 650-acre course opted to close it to the public last fall. It’ll remain inaccessible until after the championship.
The Right Kind of Rough
While spectators can enjoy fine views of the hilly heartland, Erin Hills’ uncultivated terrain and elevated greens will provide a keen test for defending champion Dustin Johnson and the rest of the field.