Seeing for miles and miles is a Cool Golf Thing

It's hard to beat golf on Gullane Hill.
Gullane Hill is one of golf's magical places.

Latitude: 52 degrees, 2 minutes, 5 and a half seconds North.
Longitude: 2 degrees, 50 minutes, 43 and three-eighths seconds West.

It’s the first of October, 2019 and I’m standing atop Gullane Hill on the seventh tee of Gullane Golf Club’s No. 1 Course. I’m just 200 feet above sea level but it might as well be a mile for all I can see.

Immediately ahead is 400 yards of par 4, dropping 70 feet. But I can’t concentrate on that, not yet, because I’m overwhelmed by everything else in view. In a country dotted with dozens of landmarks of this great game, the feeling that I am somewhere transcendent – almost holy – is rushing into me. From this perched patch of sod, I have a 360-degree view of hundreds of square Scottish miles.

Parts of eight golf courses reveal themselves. Gullane’s three courses, plus mysterious Luffness New Golf Club, all share the Hill, wrapping themselves around her sides when they’re not careening headlong over her.

A click southward, Hill gives way to Firth and Firth to Aberlady Bay. On the far shore, kindly Kilspindie and her much younger neighbor, Craigielaw. It is a brilliant fall day, and as I follow the Firth’s southern shore I can see all the way to Edinburgh: the cargo yards of Leith and, 22 miles west of where I stand, the silhouette of the Forth Bridge.

I turn around. Shining beneath me, a mile east, is Muirfield. Then a belt of trees, then just a hint of The Renaissance Club – like Gullane, a Scottish Open host.

I could linger all day but they play fast here, and the fairway is clear. Dozens of other golfers drift back and forth over the links below. They’re miles away and right beside me, brothers and sisters in the ever-unfolding odyssey of club, ball and cup.

I won’t be here for long, but right now, I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be. I flare a drive into the fescue and start making my way down from the most beautiful place I have stood in golf.

March 22, 2019
(Usually) 300 words or less, every Friday.

Tim Gavrich is a Senior Writer for GolfPass. Follow him on Twitter @TimGavrich and on Instagram @TimGavrich.
1 Comments
Commented on

This seems, at first glance, a sort of “Golf in the Kingdom” take on Gullane and Scotland. But after reading it closely, I see it as an equally realistic look at the impressiveness of the Scottish landscape and how it befits the game perfectly. When I played Prince’s in England (next to Royal St. George’s), I conversed a bit with the pro, and told him how much I liked the golf course. I mentioned that I had decided to play it with my son because of its high repute from several sources. He commented, as we continued to talk, how hard it is to displace, however, the Scottish courses, which dominate the all of the rankings.
At any rate, I would never disagree that Scotland should enjoy its worldwide preeminence. Your picture and commentary, in a way, make this point concisely.

More from the author
1 Min Read
October 22, 2021
Green grass and low scores forever.
4 Min Read
October 18, 2021
Slight cooling of Pacific Ocean waters increases likelihood of abnormal weather in major golf destinations.
1 Min Read
October 15, 2021
As if golf wasn't already tough enough...
4 Min Read
October 14, 2021
More brands than ever want to help you look good, feel comfortable and spend wisely on your trousers.
4 Min Read
October 14, 2021
Comfort stations have become the new norm at exclusive private clubs like The Summit, which makes its PGA Tour debut this weekend.
4 Min Read
October 12, 2021
Golf course news and notes: October, 2021.
Popular
12 Images
October 11, 2021
This Albuquerque gem is one of the tournament capitals of collegiate golf.
21 Images
September 30, 2021
This collection of photos sent in by reviewers might be the best we've ever seen.
7 Min Read
October 7, 2021
We found the 10 cities where it's easiest to score a tee time.
7 Min Read
September 30, 2021
From the largest elevation drop to the wildest greens and deepest bunker, all these U.S. courses take the game to the edge.
Load More
Now Reading
Seeing for miles and miles is a Cool Golf Thing