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Golfspy Dave's MGS Covert Operation: Maui

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Here today, gone to Maui

I don't know when I first heard that phrase. It was probably many years ago when I first had a friend go to Maui on vacation. Well I am sure that decades have passed since those words were spoken and in that time I still have not visited Hawaii. Maybe you have not made a trek to the Hawaiian Islands either, they are far from a lot of locations. Living here in California though, it seems like everyone I know has gone on vacation to Hawaii except me. Most will tell me all about their favorite island, while I have yet to step foot into the volcanic paradise. It's been on my to-do list for a while, but making the trip always seemed to get back-burner priority. Until now.

 

Aloha Maui

That's right, I am finally heading to Maui on vacation. Now I am not posting this to gloat, but rather because I am hoping to mix some golf into my vacation and I thought you would be interested in reading about the process. As I started to get ready for the trip, I realized that there were a couple of questions that I had about how this whole golf thing was going to work out. Here are my main concerns about getting ready for some golf island style.

• Where should I play?

• What do I need to do to get ready to play?

• What would the MGS community like me to share about my rounds there?

 

So climb into my golf bag and come along. Over the next few weeks as I get ready to go, I'll update the spots below this one with the answers to the above questions. I am not totally sure what will come of this project, but I thought it would be more fun to take all of you along during the process rather than tell you about it after the fact. That way we can all make the transition to island time together.

 

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Volvo Intorqueo

 

All the cool kids follow me on twitter: @golfspy_dave

 

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Question 1: Where should I play?

So based upon the suggestions of you guys and on the fact that we are staying on the northwest side of the island, it is looking like we are going to play Ka'anapali and Kapalua.

At Ka'anapali, I need to decide between the Royal Course and the Kai Course (or both). Normally, I think that this is a no-brainer for the Royal Course, but they just aerified that one. I think that it would be fun to play, even if the greens are only a couple of weeks healed after punching.

 

What do you think? Which Ka'anapali course would you play if you had to choose just one?

Check them out by clicking this LINK.

 

And the winner is both courses at Ka'anapali!

 

The tentative game plan is to play the Royal course in the morning and then the Kai in the afternoon next Thursday. It should be amazing!

 

Covert Operation: Maui Now Featuring Kapalua

How cool is that? We have added another day of golf to the trip, this time a Kapalua. We will be spending the morning at the Kapalua Golf Academy and then, after a bit of lunch, heading out to play The Plantation course in the afternoon. Click HERE for a academy brochure. I have for a long time wondered about what one could learn at one of these resort academies. I will definitely have a full report.


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All the cool kids follow me on twitter: @golfspy_dave

 

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Question 2: What do I need to do to get ready to play?

This is a question for me that really has two components, GAME and GEAR.

 

The GAME part of the preparation is admittedly mental, and quite silly, but I can't deny that it is there. I want to be ready to play solid golf on this trip. Now I know that I will be playing golf in Maui, on gorgeous courses at Ka'anapali, and that should be the real "happy place" thought for the round. Truth be told though, I am not really trusting my swing right now. Maybe it's because I just switched irons, or maybe it's the lack of range time this summer, who really knows? All I know is that my swing has the discipline of a pair of puppies left alone in the house for the day. The couch is a bit torn up, and there are ugly deposits throughout.

 

So I have been practicing at the range for the past week. I dusted off the Tour Tempo Power Tools iron, and that has made a huge difference. I may not be back at peak performance, but I also think that it is unlikely that I will top every tee shot. Funny how golf confidence can wax and wane.

 

Should I just get over myself and revel in the fact that I am playing golf in Maui?

 

The GEAR side of the puzzle is a little more straight forward: What do I take with me?

It looks like we will be playing two rounds at Ka'anapali, possibly going total ninja for a round at Kapalua later in the week :ph34r:

So what are the essentials to pack? Here is my small item list so far:

Including Hula's & hckymeyer's suggestions

 


     
  • Golf Clothes
  • Golf Shoes
  • Balls
  • Glove
  • Tees
  • Towel
  • Sunblock
  • Laser
  • Ball mark repair tool
  • Ball marker
  • Sharpee if you mark your balls, otherwise just do it before hand
  • Club brush if you use one
  • Camera if your phone doesn't have a good one
  • Tide Stick

 

Help me out here with some other small items. What am I forgetting?

 

The other large item decision is clubs. Do I pack them or rent them? I am leaning toward rent as that makes the travel easier and it actually gives me an excuse for poor play :) , but will the lack of "my clubs" impact my play so much that it will make the rounds less enjoyable? Should I just KCCO and supplement my play with medicine from the Maui Brewing Company when required? BTW, the limited release Lemongrass Saison looks amazing. Now that I type it out Rental Clubs+Beer seems like the right choice.

 

 

Do I rent or pack the sticks?

How does this question change now that we are attending the golf academy at Kapalua? Rental clubs at both locations are good. Ka'anapali has new sets of Nike Covert gear and Kapalua has Titleist AP1/2 with 913 metals. I am leaning toward renting at this point. I am traveling with the kids, so waiting for the big luggage could be an issue. Also, I think that the information I pick up at the Kapalua Academy will still be valuable, even if I don't have my own sticks. It's not like I don't change gear all of the time anyway :)


Volvo Intorqueo

 

All the cool kids follow me on twitter: @golfspy_dave

 

If you are not a cool kid, following me on twitter will make you cool...

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Covert Operation Maui: Debriefing

Just to get it going, here is a time lapse video shot at the Kapalua Plantation course and the Ka'anapali Kai course using the Sony Action Cam.

More details about the trip to follow.

 


Volvo Intorqueo

 

All the cool kids follow me on twitter: @golfspy_dave

 

If you are not a cool kid, following me on twitter will make you cool...

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Kapalua. Plantation Course. The other course is ok, but not a wow by any stretch.

 

Golf clubs.

 

Video, thought process, and a full evaluation of every shot you hit. :)


Follow me on Twitter: @MattSaternus

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ahhh dude, when are you going? I'm moving to Hawaii in November (Oahu though, not Maui). I've been to Maui once, but didn't get any golf in unfortunately.

 

If you can swing a day trip over to Lanai then DEFINITELY try to get a tee time at The Challenge at Manele.

 

Aside from Plantation (which should be a must), The Wailea Old Blue Course looks pretty sweet as well, or the Gold course if you're up for a bit more of a test.

 

I guess what I'd be most interested about your rounds is whether you were impressed enough by any of the courses for them to get on your "must play when I return" list. To me that's the real test of how great a course is.

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Nidine and I spent our honeymoon at Kap so I can't say enough about that place. Bay course is still good with some memorable holes along the water and a few cool holes on the back 9 if you're up that way. Thread about it here Photo in first post linked is 4th hole @ Bay course

 

Now for golf southern island has some great course we didn't get to play in the Wailea area but sure was sweet looking. So I'd love to see you play down this way and report back for sure.


Yo #JustPlayBetter


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Practice hitting into strong winds. Knock downs etc. I've been to several islands over the past 10 years and I'm always surprised by how windy it typically is. Playing in the rain is good compared to Sac rain and the sun sets earlier, so schedule well. IIRC all the courses I played have poa greens, so you'll be comfortable on them.

 

All the courses that I've played were awesome.. Some are crazy good expensive resort courses and others are local munis with chickens everywhere, cost $9 for 9 holes and have ocean views. I enjoyed them all.


I spy with my little eye something...

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I will let my PEOPLES know that you are coming...... :)

 

1. I have played most of the golf courses there, Most of my Family still lives on the island. My top three. The Gold course at Wailea, Ka'anapali golf courses, and for a Muni, The dunes at Maui Lani. Kapalua...... if you have the cash, it's always good to say "ya, I played there...."

 

2. If the trade winds are blowing, KNOCKDOWN, KNOCKDOWN, KNOCKDOWN. If not, stay well hydrated and bring bug spray, tiger mosquito's love mainland flesh.

 

3. What would we like you to share ? How many golf balls you shredded at the Gold course at Wailea........ :) Lava rock is razor sharp.....

 

Aloha my friend .....


Driver:   :taylormade-small: M3 Tensei CK Pro Blue
3-Metal:: :callaway-small: GBB EPIC, FujiKura Pro Green

5-Metal:  :cobra-small: F-7, FujiKura Pro

Irons:   :mizuno-small: MP-18 SC, KBS Tour 120

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:   RTX-3  52 - 56 - 60
Putter:  EVN-Roll ER-5

Ball :  :bridgestone-small: Tour B XS

Range Finder:  Busnnell Tour-X,  Garmin S20 

 

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Hula's the go to guy for Hawaii, but I will say I had a conversation with the head greens keeper on 12 the first day and he explained the grain of the greens. I paid attention to the grain the rest of the trip and found it really did come into play considerably over there.


Yo #JustPlayBetter


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I have played almost all of the Maui courses, having been there about five times (though not in the last five years). As noted above, the Plantation is the one must play course.

 

Wailea Gold is also the clear #2.

 

If funds are not endless, you may be looking for cheaper options as well, since resort golf in Hawaii is very, very expensive. Did I mention that they also cost a lot? There's a nifty course half way up Haleakala (sp?), the volcano. It's called Pukalani, fun, relatively cheap and good views. Also Silversword over in the Wailea area (looks like its now called Elleair Maui Golf Club). It looks like you can play both of those for between $50 and 70. And, the muni near the airport, while short and a muni, has some great Hawaii type holes (a 250+ par three that you hit off a cliff (a five iron shot as I recall).

 

One benefit of the Wailea area is that that side of the island tends to be sheltered from the trade winds by the mountains of the east half of the island. Those winds can be daunting and are unrelentless. They can get to you a bit even if you are not golfing. In addition to the Wailea courses and Silversword, the course at Makena is excellent (albeit quite pricey). If you haven't picked an area to stay yet, anywhere on Maalaea bay (which includes Wailea and Kihei area) tends to be less windy than Lahaina/Kaanapali.

 

On the east side of the island, I tend to prefer the Bay and VIllage courses at Kapalua over the Ka'anapali courses. Disadavantage of those (Bay and Village) courses (and Plantation) is that they are just enough around the north edge of the island that they fall at the edge of the daily rain belt (most of the island is desert, but the interior and north part of the east half of the island get hundreds of inches of rain a year--a must side trip is to take the couple of mile hike in the state park near the airport that goes up towards the eye of the needle (Iao Needle State Park)--within those couple of miles you go from desert to savannah to forest to rainforest where it is almost always raining).

 

The Ka'anapali courses are nice, of course, just nothing Hawaii noteworthy about them as far as views and elevations and canyons--they could very well be nice Florida resort courses.

 

Going back next year!


Nonchalant putts count the same as chalant putts.

In my Ogio Ozone XX Cart Stand Bag:

Ping G400 10.5 Deg Driver, stock Stiff shaft
TM Rocketballz 19 Deg 5 Wood, stock Matrix Osik Stiff shaft
TM Rocketballz Stage 2 21 Deg Tour 4 Hybrid, Rocketfuel 80h Stiff shaft 

Callaway Apex CF 16 Irons, 4-P, Stiff Shafts
 
Scor 48 and 55 degree wedges.  
Renegar 60 Deg Steel Shaft Lob Wedge

TM Ghost Spider Si 38" Counterbalanced Putter

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I'm gonna vote for the 2 courses on Lanai... The Challenge, and the Experience. Mmmmmmm. Hawaii. I just got back from Big Island. I want to go back. Today.


What I lug around the golf course in my MacKenzie Walker.

Driver -   Ping G410 Plus 9° Tour 65 S
Fairway -  :srixon-small: Z785 13.5° Tensei CK Pro Orange 70 S

2 Iron - :srixon-small: ZU65 18° AeroTech SteelFiber 110icw S

Irons -  :srixon-small: Z785  TTDG IT S400 3,5-Pw 1° flat
Wedges - :cleveland-small: RTX4 Raw 50° 54° 58°  TTGDTI S400 1° flat

Putters -   Odyssey Toulon Stroke Lab Austin/Nike  Method Converge B1-01 UST Frequency Filter/Odyssey 2 Ball DFX/ TaylorMade Spider
Tour Black / Ping Anser F/ Scotty Cameron TeI3 Sole Stamp Newport 2. All with different grips, weights, and lengths.
 

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Great info so far!

Post 2 updated...


Volvo Intorqueo

 

All the cool kids follow me on twitter: @golfspy_dave

 

If you are not a cool kid, following me on twitter will make you cool...

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If it was me, and I could only play one of them, I'd play Kaanapali Kai. They both look like great courses, but if one's going to have a big part of the experience (greens) not in tip-top order, then I'd be going with the other. Also, it might give just the excuse you need to make the trip back to play Royal at a later date B)

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Tough choice...... I'd play BOTH. Kai is a little more forgiving than Royal. As far as Aeration, the green tend to heal faster on the islands because of the frequent summer rains, almost cuts the time in half.

 

ONE MORE SUGGESTION, VERY IMPORTANT

 

The "red dirt" on the islands..... once it gets on the color white, it's done.


Driver:   :taylormade-small: M3 Tensei CK Pro Blue
3-Metal:: :callaway-small: GBB EPIC, FujiKura Pro Green

5-Metal:  :cobra-small: F-7, FujiKura Pro

Irons:   :mizuno-small: MP-18 SC, KBS Tour 120

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:   RTX-3  52 - 56 - 60
Putter:  EVN-Roll ER-5

Ball :  :bridgestone-small: Tour B XS

Range Finder:  Busnnell Tour-X,  Garmin S20 

 

Follow me:

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I didn't play Kaanapali, but that's the courses by the whalers village right? Which course is which? Seems like the highway splits em and there were a few holes frame by roads right in front of the village. Oh and wasn't Big Break there?


Yo #JustPlayBetter


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Yup Big Break was on Kai from what I remember. You can Spend all week there and still not see the whole thing... :)


Driver:   :taylormade-small: M3 Tensei CK Pro Blue
3-Metal:: :callaway-small: GBB EPIC, FujiKura Pro Green

5-Metal:  :cobra-small: F-7, FujiKura Pro

Irons:   :mizuno-small: MP-18 SC, KBS Tour 120

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:   RTX-3  52 - 56 - 60
Putter:  EVN-Roll ER-5

Ball :  :bridgestone-small: Tour B XS

Range Finder:  Busnnell Tour-X,  Garmin S20 

 

Follow me:

@Hula_Rock

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Check out the updated questions 1 and 2.

Thoughts?


Volvo Intorqueo

 

All the cool kids follow me on twitter: @golfspy_dave

 

If you are not a cool kid, following me on twitter will make you cool...

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I would take your own clubs that way you feel more comfortable that you can play your best


Driver:   :callaway-small: Epic 10.5 set to 9.5 w/ Tour AD-DI 44.5

FW:   :cobra-small: F6 baffler set at 16º

Hybrid:  NONE
Irons:   :taylormade-small:  3i 2014 TP CB  4-PW 2011 TP MC w/ TT S400

Wedges:   :nike-small: 52º :nike-small: 56º  :edel-golf-1: 60 º w/ KBS C-Taper XS Soft-stepped

Putter:   :ping-small: Sigma G Tyne 34 inches Gold dot

 

 

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If it's not so much about score and more about the experience rent the clubs. All the top resorts have Titleist, TM or Callaway something new. Kap gave me AP1 and Cameron and Turtle bay the same in separate visits.


Yo #JustPlayBetter


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