Caledonia Golf & Fish Club

Caledonia Golf & Fish Club – Played 2014

  • Rankings: Golf Digest Public #97, Golf Magazine Public #27
  • Location: 369 Caledonia Drive, Pawleys Island, South Carolina
  • Year: 1994
  • Architect: Mike Strantz
  • Course Access: Public
  • Walking Rules: Carts Available

Score Card Information:

  • Pintail: 6,526 yards, Par 72, 71.8 Rating/138 Slope
  • Mallard: 6,121 yards, Par 72, 69.5 Rating/342 Slope
  • Wood Duck: 5,710 yards, Par 72, 67.6 Rating/127 Slope
  • Redhead: 4,957 yards, Par 72, 68.7 Rating/124 Slope

The second of three courses I played on a May trip to Myrtle Beach was Caledonia Golf & Fish Club.  It was the first solo design by Mike Strantz, who also did Tobacco Road and the renovation of Monterey Peninsula Country Club (Shore).  Unfortunately, Mike was lost far too young to cancer.  His courses are always interesting and different.

I thought I would share some information about the course.  It was built on the site of a former working rice plantation.  The entrance has many mature live oaks (about 150 years old!) on the way to its antebellum-styled clubhouse.  There are no houses on the course, which gave it a very secluded feel.  The name of the course stems from what the Romans called Scotland, the home of the original property owner.The current owners purchased the property to use primarily as a hunting and fishing preserve.  This aspect of the property still exists in the private fishing club.  The whole property has a very hostpitable feel and offers a definite lowcountry feel.

I was playing with a couple from Nebraska, who were some of the nicest people you could hope to meet.  We talked golf, college football, and traveling all day.  They made the day infinitely more enjoyable.  Our fourth was a guy from Massachusetts who reminded me of all my family from New England.  He was hilarious and a great cart partner.  Overall this was one of the best random pairings I have had.  We chose to play the Mallard tees and all yardages are from those markers.

IMG_1428

Hole 1 – 376 yards – Par 4

It had rained quite a bit the day before we played.  This close to sea-level the course was bound to be wet, but it actually drained better than I thought it would.  The first tee shot has some bunkers to maneuver around, but a good drive should carry them.

C 1-1The approach shot plays to a slightly raised green.  You don’t really want to be long.

C 1-2The green is pretty flat except for the front right.

C 1-3Hole 2 – 571 yards – Par 5

A fade works really well off this tee.  My draw didn’t like those two trees up the right side.

C 2-1The approach is guarded by a green side bunker that is deeper than it looks here.

C 2-2There is a big ridge through the middle of the green as you can see below.  This was a pretty small green.

C 2-3Hole 3 – 187 yards – Par 3

This is textbook Strantz to me.  He is a master with bunkering and creative green complexes.  This is a huge waste bunker, that is more visual hazard than actual.  The two bunkers on either side of the green are the bigger issue.

C 3-1This is a huge green, with a lot of slope from back to front.  It is also narrow as seen in the photo below.

C 3-2Hole 4 – 396 yards – Par 4

Tough tee shot on this hole with the bunker right and trees left.  A nice draw off the bunker will work just fine.

C 4-1The second shot should avoid the bunker to the left of the green.  It is well below the putting surface and makes for a tough up and down.

C 4-2Here is a shot of the green.

C 4-3Hole 5 – 419 yards – Par 4

This is another tough tee shot on a stout hole.  The best line is a fade off the tree seen in the middle of the picture.

C 5-1The approach shot is all in front of you here.  Short of the green is not a bad miss.

C 5-2This green has some undulation to it on the cart side of the green where it falls off.

C 5-3Hole 6 – 157 yards – Par 3

I loved this little hole.  Depending on where the pin is, the hole can play a lot of ways.  On this particular day, there is a bailout on the right of the green or you can be daring and take on the flag over the deep bunker.  This tee shot makes you think.

C 6-1There is a lot of slope in this green.  It looks like waves in the front before flattening around the pin.

C 6-2Hole 7 – 399 yards – Par 4

This hole is a little quirky.  You are hitting right under and through these oaks.  It was visually stressful.

C 7-1More tree issues here if you are in the right side of the fairway.  This overhanging tree is definitely in play from that side.

C 7-2Once again, more undulation on the green as you can see below.

C 7-3Hole 8 – 528 yards – Par 5

This is a pretty open shot.  Just tee it up and bust one out there.

C 8-1The second shot gives you a decision.  It is all carry if you go for it with the hazard fronting the green.

C 8-2The green has two pronounced tiers and with the flag in the front provides a huge backstop.

C 8-3Hole 9 – 118 yards – Par 3

Just another great par three.  The green is partially blind and shallow.  Club selection is crucial here.

C 9-1You can see how shallow the green is here at the ridge.  Any cross-green putts will have to deal with that pronounced ridge.

C 9-2Hole 10 – 553 yards – Par 5

The tenth tee shot comes out of a chute.  Once past the hazard though the hole opens up considerably.

C 10-1The second shot is more than likely a layup.

C 10-2The approach shot is seen below.  Avoid the bunkers on the left.

C 10-3The green is pretty small and seems to be built to accept wedges.  There is also plenty of slope throughout the surface.

C 10-4Hole 11 – 167 yards – Par 3

This shot requires focus with trouble around the green.

C 11-1This green is flatter than the last few and gives you a bit of a breather from all that slope.

C 11-2Hole 12 – 405 yards – Par 4

A draw here will set up a good approach shot.  The bunker next to the hazard is not really in play.  If you can see what looks like a rock in the left side of the bunker, then you are looking at an eight-foot alligator.  The maintenance guys said anytime they get to twelve feet they remove them.  Um, just my opinion, but no need to wait until twelve feet!

C 12-1The approach shot is seen below.

C 12-2Another flattish green except on the front left.  Also note the bunker on the right of the green.

C 12-3Hole 13 – 398 yards – Par 4

This hole bends to the left after you pass the tree line so make sure you get it out there enough to have an open shot.

C 13-1This is a small green to hit into with bunkers all around.  Both bunkers are penal so just hit the green!

C 13-2Here is a shot of the green from the back side.

C 13-3Hole 14 – 415 yards – Par 4

Another hooker’s nightmare hole!  Any tee shot a little to the right of the bunkers leaves you in great shape.

C 14-1There is a big ridge running through this green that makes any front to back putts challenging.

C 14-2Hole 15 – 462 yards – Par 4

This is a very formidable hole.  It is long and pretty tight.  A straight driver is the only strategy here.  Luckily, I saved the best one of the day for this hole.

C 15-1The hole does give you a break on the green.  There is much less slope than many of the other putting surfaces.

C 15-2Hole 16 – 376 yards – Par 4

This hole fits a power fade off the bunker up the left side.  Be careful not to go through the fairway on the left.

C 16-1Be sure to avoid the hazard on the second shot.  There is a little bit of a bailout on the left.

C 16-2We are back to the slope on this green as you can see in this photo from the left side.

C 16-3Hole 17 – 175 yards – Par 3

The final version of the phenomenal one-shotters.  This is a raised green surrounded by sand.  It calls for precision.

C 17-1You can see the elevation of the green as you walk up from the left side.  Any shots long are pretty much dead.

C 17-2Hole 18 – 383 yards – Par 4

This hole requires a solid tee shot.  The water on the right is in play.

C 18-1The approach plays over the water to just in front of the clubhouse and the usual gallery.

C 18-2This is the view you can take in while enjoying a beverage after your round.  Our group was definitely not the only one partaking.  The green itself has most of its slope in the front.

C 18-3Below is just a good shot of the clubhouse.

C - CLUBHOUSEAnd a photo of a part of the Intracoastal Waterway.

C - ICWAs you can see, Strantz really emphasizes green complexes and bunkers.  Caledonia is a target course, but it doesn’t try to trick you.  I had a blast playing this place and really enjoyed all the shots the course provided.  Even though the distance wasn’t ridiculous, I hit most of the clubs in my bag evidencing great shot variety.

My playing partners made for a great day.  If you are going to Myrtle Beach, I would definitely recommend adding this course to your itinerary.

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7 thoughts on “Caledonia Golf & Fish Club

  1. Pingback: Tiger Golf Traveler December Newsletter | Tiger Golf Traveler

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