Behind the Scenes at Pebble

That includes a blade of grass and a grain of sand

View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print

    NEWSLETTERS

    Scott Halleran

    Tens of thousands of people will be headed to Pebble Beach this weekend for the U.S. Open golf tournament.

    Stars like Tiger Woods will be shining bright for the cameras and the fans as they bring loads of cash to the Monterey Peninsula.  The sell-out tournament is an economic boom to the entire central coast region.

    Hotels are at capacity for the first time in a long time.

    Saratoga Kid Storms Pebble

    [BAY] Saratoga Kid Storms Pebble
    Saratoga's Joseph Bramlett took his diploma from Stanford on Sunday and then his clubs to Pebble Beach the very next day for the U.S. Open.

    It has taken months if not years for the area to prepare for their close up and that includes going to some very details lengths on things like the quality of sand used in tournament.

    Some of the area of the courses are spray painted or dyed with an extra coat of green to ensure beautiful blimp shots.

    While golfers worry about which clubs to use and fans worry about which clothes to wear, ground workers have gone to painstaking effort on everything from the height of a blade of grass to the quality of the sand used in sand traps.

    Don Chapin's company was hired to come up with the sand for the tournament site.   He said the quality standards of the USGA are extremely tough to meet.

    "The USGA is an extremely tough organization. They give you a specific request, and you can't deviate from it. Here's what we want. Here's how we want it and we were able to provide that here," Chapin said.

    Those tough standards were found at an unlikely place: the Marina Landfill.  Yes, a dump.

    "It was a little surprising in the beginning because when you discover something, it's almost like discovering gold," Chapin said.

    He said the sand is washed and filtered with rain water nine times before it is sent to the links.

    There it is used as top cover, divot repair and sand traps. Each of those sands are made in a slightly different way.