Contrary to what you may find elsewhere on the internet, 2016 was an awesome year. I was able to play over 100 rounds of golf at some of America's finest destinations with some of America's greatest people. I even got a couple of Canadian rounds on the books. Check out 2016's winners for round of the month below.
January 2016: Streamsong with Mayo and Ogle.
The year started out strongly with a journey to Florida for the PGA Show and some golf with Ashley Mayo of Golf Digest and Sean Ogle of Breaking Eighty (The second best golf blog on the internet) 36 at Streamsong was hard to beat. Ashley and Sean are even tougher to beat.
March 2016: Spanish Oaks. Can't keep a good Texas caddie down.
On a trip to Texas, I was paired up with an all world caddie at Spanish Oaks, his yardages were spot on and his knowledge of the course shaved countless strokes. I even canned a few long putts that I would have otherwise misread.
April 2016: Consolation Round: 2016 Golf Digest TYPHI.
After Cody Ross and I suffered a tough loss in a playoff at the Think Young Play Hard Invitational, it was time for T-Rex to take on the Links at Bali Hai in the consolation bowl. Sarah Moodie, Jeremy Lusk, and I hit the links hard indeed.
May 2016: Pinehurst No. 2 with Payne Stewart
I was never fortunate enough to have met the man in person, but the spirit of Payne Stewart lives on. There is no place where this is more true than at Pinehurst No. 2. The site of Payne's first US Open Victory and iconic victory pose.
June 2016: The Massacre at Merion
This one was an easy victory for Merion as it is without a doubt one of the most special places that I have ever visited in the world of golf. In an epic Merion showdown, it was the women vs the men. Although the women were fantastic hosts, they took no mercy on Sean Ogle and I, scoring a lopsided victory in what would later be called "The Massacre at Merion." Even though we suffered a crushing defeat, Sean and I would consider the loss a victory.
July 2016: Friar's Head with Captain Joe, Ashley Mayo, and Jeff Blind
As I look back on 2016, it would be tough to remember a round more enjoyable than this one at Friars Head. As Ashley Mayo reminds us, it's not where you play, but who you play with that makes the difference. This round had both areas covered in style.
August: Water Balloons at Manzanita Golf Course.
My good friend Joey the Cat was turning 30 and it was time to celebrate. What better way to beat the heat, but with water balloons. I kicked things off with a splash here in Oregon.
September: Robert Trent Jones and the RTJ golf trail
With a full line up of golf bros and endless golf, the RTJ trail in Alabama really felt like one endless round. Perhaps the best value in all of public golf, the trail is a fantastic destination for any group of die hard golf buddies.
October: Golfing next to the President at Olympia Fields. Chicago Cubs win the World Series
Few people in the world get the chance to play golf with an active President. I am currently not one of those people. However, I did have the privilege of playing golf on the same course at the same time with Barack Obama at Olympia Fields. Later on, the Cubs would win the world series. It was a good trip to Chicago.
November: $9 solo mission on Thanksgiving at Tuscan Ridge
While playing golf with friends is fantastic, heading out to the course as a single can be just as satisfying. After paying a modest $9 greens fee, it was just me, the grass, and my golf ball as I worked up a Thanksgiving appetite.
December: The Club at Estancia
When my plane landed in Phoenix my wife informed me that it was snowing in Seattle. Although, I missed my wife, I didn't miss the weather. The next day I would be teeing it up at Estancia in 70 degree desert conditions. Between our fantastic hosts and Tom Fazio's visual assault on my golfing senses, The Club at Estancia delivered one of the year's most enjoyable experiences.
Like any good New Year's post, I will close with a vague and immeasurable New Year's resolution. "Play more golf in 2017."