Ice hits famed Magnolia Lane
Augusta National Golf Club’s most famous trees appear to have survived the ice storm that has crippled much of the Augusta area – at least for now.
An Augusta National spokesman said Thursday via text that the club had some minor debris cleanup, which was expected given the severity of the storm that brought nearly an inch of ice and caused widespread power outages.
The club is still assessing the damage and is scheduled to reopen for normal operations Friday morning, he said.
Pictures of Magnolia Lane showed several limbs and branches down as sleet and freezing rain began Tuesday night and continued throughout Wednesday.
Crews cleaned up the entrance Thursday, and the “Members Only” sign that hangs at the entrance off Washington Road also was a victim of the ice.
The magnolia trees that line the club’s famous entrance date to the late 1850s, but they aren’t the only notable landmarks on the course that are susceptible to Mother Nature.
The Eisenhower Tree, or Ike’s Tree, is located about 195 yards from the tee on the 17th hole. The loblolly pine is 65 feet high and is 100 to 125 years old.
The tree was named because the president often hit into it, and at a club meeting in 1956 he proposed cutting it down. Masters Tournament co-founder Clifford Roberts ruled him out of order and adjourned the meeting, and the tree has been linked to Eisenhower ever since.
The “big oak tree” behind the clubhouse was planted in the late 1850s. It’s a popular gathering spot during Masters Week for players, officials and club members.