Payne and…The Light

Did you catch it? The flash of light? Revealed as part of a longer time lapse video (view it below), note the eerie flash of light illuminating the Payne Stewart statue behind the 18th green of Pinehurst No. 2.

Just one of the many little things we liked about archiving Pinehurst No. 2 in the 10 weeks following the U.S. Opens. We think it’s much, much more than just watching grass grow. To wit:

:02 seconds Seeing Michelle Wie hold her arms up in triumph still gives us chills. What a moment to share at Pinehurst.

:05 seconds FLASH! So cool.

:15 seconds Note in the brown grass area just beyond Payne’s reach. See those green squares? That’s where part of the 18th-hole grandstand structure stood.

:21 seconds Now is as good a time as any to remark again about the No. 2 greens and the new Ultradwarf Bermuda surfaces, which is ultimately why the video exists. The heat-tolerant strain of Bermuda will allow for peak playing conditions for longer periods of time throughout the year.

:26 seconds Great sunrise.

:35 seconds A moment to point out the construction of the first tee – After the Opens, the first tee was rebuilt, widened and enlarged. Also, the practice putting greens near the tee were redone, as was the brick cart path. Check out the changes next time you are here. The tee box is really, really good.

:41 seconds Interesting to see just how much the turf work the grounds crew does in this part of the video helps the recovery of the area that was under the grandstand.

:47 seconds Cool to see this storm move in – and out.

1:07 Always great to see the people stop by the Payne statue.

1:12 This might be the best sunrise on the video.

1:33 Pretty good sunrise here as well, and interestingly, it quickly dissolves into a wicked storm.

1:42 Best part of the video for watching clouds. Note how the big, puffy white clouds move in one direction while the upper level clouds move in the other.

1:59 LOVE watching these clouds move.

2:05 We move into the final week of the process here. The amount of rain we had in August is suggested in the earlier part of the video, but is clear with how green No. 2 is once we reach this point. Mother Nature makes most of those decisions for us.

2:10 I think that was me checking the camera. Or John Gessner. Sorry.

2:19 The brilliant blue skies we had over this final week each morning were amazing.

2:27 Yes, for the final week, we moved the camera. Had to. Clubhouse construction on the old starter’s tower forced us over. Still a cool angle.

3:00 Opening Day. OK, maybe THIS is the best sunrise of the video.

3:14 Thanks, John. Amazing work.