Less than four years away from its major championship debut in 2015, Chambers Bay is being groomed for a successful U.S. Open.
After hosting the '10 U.S. Amateur, the USGA learned some critical intel on how the Robert Trent Jones Jr. design would react to the intense pressure of major championship conditions.
The course was not watered for three weeks leading into the championship, which was won by Peter Uihlein. The hard and fast conditions produced by the intentional drought showed the course could maintain playability while mimicking Open Championship-style conditions.
This year, according to the Associated Press, the USGA worked with Chambers to see how it could integrate its brand of design for their major. The course grew fescue rough year-long to see how the slow-sprouting grass would do.
Originally designed without any rough in mind, nearly a year's worth of growth produced six inches of nasty rough. Though Executive Director and setup man Mike Davis will likely not resort to those lengths, they now know how much time it will take to create a grassy chamber of horrors.
Ultimately, the game plan for Chambers will be somewhat similar to the approach taken with Congressional. Davis and the USGA will seek to create new teeing grounds and shape holes with rough to require strategic placement with every shot, as well as feature peril more prominently.
What the USGA hopes will not be precarious is the grounds for spectators. They will work with the course to add walking paths and flatten dunes to create safer conditions for viewing and walking the track.