“The loss of the Eisenhower Tree is difficult news to accept,” club chairman Billy Payne said. “We obtained options from the best arborists available and, unfortunately, were advised that no recovery was possible.”
The ice storm last week caused the tree to lose a significant amount of major limbs. A photo from The August Chronicle showed gaping sections missing from the left side. The club had used cable to help hold the pine together in recent years.
The Eisenhower Tree was a loblolly pine and was among the most famous trees in golf. Augusta National players either had to hit their ball over the 65-foot tree to keep the ball in the fairway, or try to shape their swings to avoid it. This unique obstacle famously infuriated former President and Augusta National Golf Club member Dwight D. Eisenhower – which earned the tree its current sobriquet.
“We have begun deliberations of the best way to address the future of the 17th hole and to pay tribute to [Eisenhower’s] iconic symbol of our history,” Payne said. “Rest assured, we will do both appropriately.”
Click here to read the original Fox News report, and to learn more about the history of the Eisenhower Tree.