Pete Dye, 89, Remains One of Golf's Great Architects

Pete Dye, 89, Remains One of Golf's Great Architects

Born two years before Charles Lindbergh flew the Spirit of St. Louis across the Atlantic, Pete Dye remains steadfast against grounding himself.

Instead, he continues to move ground.

"I haven't any idea why I don't retire," Dye said. "I just keep digging. ... I'll stop just when the man upstairs takes me."

Although the distinctive and world-renown golf course designer will turn 89 next month, he will continue to add to a legacy that includes TPC Sawgrass (Florida), PGA West Stadium Course (California), Crooked Stick Golf Club (Indiana), Whistling Straits (Wisconsin), the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island (South Carolina), Harbour Town Golf Links (South Carolina) and Teeth of the Dog (Dominican Republic).

His courses are scenic and thought provoking while at the same time unnerving and, for many, diabolical considering his bountiful use of perplexing angles, deep bunkers, moguls and humps and water hazards.

PGA Tour star Jim Furyk once said Dye's designs are "visually intimidating." World No. 1 Rory McIlroy said Dye's courses provide more of a mental challenge than a physical one.

His 17th hole at TPC Sawgrass and its island green is one of the most famous – and cursed – holes in the world.

Dye's latest signature is the Ford Plantation in Richmond Hill, Ga., 18 miles south of Savannah. The sprawling 1,800-acre coastal setting in Low Country Georgia was once the winter retreat for Henry Ford.

Dye also said he's been in contact with Herb Kohler, who owns Whistling Straights, home to the 2015 PGA Championship. Dye said only subtle changes will be made to the course before the championship.

And Dye said he's still talking PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem about TPC Sawgrass, home to The Players Championship.