As a seasoned golfer, I am often asked about the different terms and jargon used in the game. One such term that often sparks curiosity is the albatross. So, what exactly is an albatross in golf?

Albatross is a term used in golf to describe a particularly rare and impressive feat achieved by a golfer. Specifically, an albatross occurs when a golfer scores three strokes under par on a single hole. It is a very difficult accomplishment to achieve and is even rarer than a hole-in-one. In this context, a score of 3 on a par-5 hole or a score of 2 on a par-4 hole would constitute an albatross. The term “albatross” is not commonly used in everyday conversation, but it is well-known among golfers and is considered a major achievement in the sport.

Defining Albatross

An albatross, also known as a double eagle, is a rare and impressive feat in golf. It is achieved when a player completes a hole in three shots under par, meaning they score a two on a par 5 or a hole-in-one on a par 4. This is an extremely rare occurrence, with statistics showing that only one in every 6 million golf shots results in an albatross.

My Personal Experience with Albatross

I remember the first time I scored an albatross like it was yesterday. It was on the 18th hole of a prestigious golf course, and I had been having a good round up until that point. I hit a perfect drive, followed by a long iron shot that landed on the green and rolled in for a two. The feeling of achieving an albatross is indescribable, and it’s something that every golfer dreams of.

The History of the Term Albatross

The term albatross has an interesting history in golf. It is believed to have originated in the early 1900s when an American golfer named Gene Sarazen scored an albatross at the British Open. When he arrived at the clubhouse, he was met with confusion as the term was not commonly used in Europe. Sarazen explained that the albatross was a large bird that symbolized a rare and impressive feat, and the term caught on from there.

An albatross in golf is achieved when a player completes a hole in three shots under par, meaning they score a two on a par 5 or a hole-in-one on a par 4. It is a rare and significant achievement that requires skill, precision, and a bit of luck. Scoring an albatross can also help a player score well in a round and boost their confidence on the course. While it largely depends on luck, choosing the right club, aiming for the green, and practicing one’s short game can increase the chances of scoring an albatross. It’s also essential to remain calm and focused throughout the round and celebrate the achievement with enthusiasm and excitement.

Misconceptions about Albatross

There is a common misconception that an albatross is the same as a birdie, but this is not the case. A birdie is achieved when a player completes a hole in one shot under par, whereas an albatross is three shots under par. It’s important to understand the difference between the two terms to avoid confusion.

The Significance of Albatross in Golf

Scoring an albatross is a significant achievement in golf and is often celebrated by players and spectators alike. It is a rare and impressive feat that requires skill, precision, and a bit of luck. Achieving an albatross can also help a player score well in a round and boost their confidence on the course.

Tips for Achieving an Albatross

While scoring an albatross is largely a matter of luck, there are some tips that can help increase your chances. These include:

  • Choosing the right club: Use a club that you are comfortable with and that can help you hit the ball accurately and with distance.
  • Aiming for the green: When playing a par 5, aim for the green in two shots to give yourself a chance at an albatross.
  • Practicing your short game: Improving your chipping and putting skills can help you make the most of your shots and increase your chances of scoring an albatross.

The Mental Game

Scoring an albatross also requires a certain mental mindset. It’s important to remain calm and focused throughout the round, especially when attempting to hit a shot that could lead to an albatross. Visualizing the shot and staying positive can also help increase your chances of success.

Celebrating the Albatross

When a player scores an albatross, it’s often celebrated with enthusiasm and excitement. Many golf courses have traditions surrounding the achievement of an albatross, such as ringing a bell or presenting the player with a special token or certificate. It’s a moment that is sure to be remembered for years to come.

FAQs: What is Albatross in Golf?

What is an albatross in golf?

In golf, an albatross is a term that refers to a score of three strokes below par on a single hole. It is also commonly known as a double eagle. This means that the golfer completes the hole in just two shots on a par five, or in one shot on a par four. Albatross is an extremely rare occurrence in golf and is normally achieved by professional golfers or skilled amateurs.

How does an albatross compare to other golf scores?

In golf, scores are measured in relation to par. A score of one under par is known as a birdie, while two under par is an eagle. An albatross is three shots under par, which is a remarkable achievement. It is worth noting that while an albatross is relatively rare, it is not as rare as a hole in one, which is a single shot to complete the hole.

What is the history behind the term albatross in golf?

The term albatross is believed to have originated in the early 20th century in the UK, where scores in relation to par were named after birds. For example, a score of one over par was known as a bogey (related to the song of the same name), while an eagle was a two under par score. The albatross was included in this system as the largest bird, and therefore the rarest and most difficult score to achieve.

How many albatrosses have been recorded in golfing history?

Albatrosses are extremely rare and are considered one of the greatest achievements in golf. Therefore, there is no exact number of how many albatrosses have been recorded in golfing history. However, it is estimated that there are around 250 recorded albatrosses in professional golf. In addition, countless amateur golfers have also achieved this feat.

What are some notable albatrosses in golf?

Some of the most famous albatrosses in golfing history include Gene Sarazen’s shot on the 15th hole of the 1935 Masters, which helped him win the tournament; Jeff Maggert’s shot on the 13th hole of the 2001 PGA Championship; and Louis Oosthuizen’s shot on the second hole of the final round of the 2012 Masters. These shots have gone down in golfing history and are still talked about today.


By Greg

Greg Fairway, a seasoned golf enthusiast and aficionado, is the passionate mind behind, a blog dedicated to all things golf. Born and raised in St. Andrews, Scotland – the birthplace of golf – Greg's love for the game was practically predestined. He first picked up a club at the tender age of six and quickly fell in love with the sport's challenges, camaraderie, and beautiful landscapes. Greg's journey has taken him around the world, exploring some of the most famous and obscure golf courses alike. With a degree in Sports Journalism from the University of Edinburgh and over two decades of experience in golfing, Greg brings a unique blend of knowledge and insight to his blog. When he's not swinging a club or writing about the game, Greg spends his free time coaching youth golf programs and working on his own golf skills. He's a dedicated family man who enjoys sharing his love for the sport with his wife and two children, both of whom have caught the golf bug as well. Greg Fairway's mission with is to share his passion, knowledge, and experiences with golfers worldwide, helping them better appreciate the beauty and intricacies of this timeless sport.