Musgrove Mill Golf Club – Played 2014
- Rankings: None of the four lists
- Location: 772 Musgrove Mill Road, Clinton, South Carolina
- Year: 1988
- Architects: Arnold Palmer
- Course Access: Private
- Walking Rules: Carts Available
Score Card Information:
- Walnut: 6,951 yards, Par 72, 74.4 Rating/153 Slope
- Oak: 6,422 yards, Par 72, 72.3 Rating/147 Slope
- Cedar: 5,889 yards, Par 72, 70.1 Rating/138 Slope
- Dogwood: 5,256 yards, Par 72, 70.7 Rating/127 Slope
I was lucky enough to play this course again through a coworker. I hadn’t played it since high school golf and was definitely looking forward to seeing it again. Since I played it again recently, a lot of my friends from my home course have become members. Hopefully, I will be able to play this course more often.
The course is built on the site of an old Revolutionary War battle. An interesting tidbit from that history is the fencing that is seen in parts of the course. It is constructed in a criss-cross shape and was used to filter the British in the battle. I don’t know all the military strategy, but I though it was pretty cool to incorporate that piece of history into the course.
As you will see in the photos there are no houses on the property. The only buildings are the clubhouse and cottages for out of town members. These cottages are more like houses and have plugs for golf carts right off the back porch. The staff will even come cook for you. Right next to these cottages is the practice range and short game area. There is room here to practice all the shots you will need on the course and you will need them.
It has had a reputation of being brutally difficult, but the course has been softened just a bit in recent years. It is still an examination in target golf, but good shots are almost always rewarded. It is set in a very rural location and you feel like you are far away from everything. It sits next to the Enoree River in a very peaceful locale.
All distances are from the Oak tees.
Hole 1 – 366 yards – Par 4
The first few holes are a relaxing start to the round. After that it gets a lot more difficult. The first tee shot can be played with less than driver as it bends to the left. Anything to far straight will run out of fairway.
This one shot hole plays quite a bit down the slope. The actual yardage plays more about 100-105 yards. The green is elevated from the ground around it making par very difficult if you miss the green.
There is some strategy on this hole. If you take driver the line must be up the left side since the fairway runs out on the right. I play this as a three shot hole and hit something a little over 200 yards.
This is the point of the course where things get tougher. The trees are in play up the left side and then there is a hazard all along the right side. The middle of the fairway is the only play here.
This is an interesting hole. The picture looks like there is no green. The hole makes a left turn past the trees. Driver is usually not needed here.
This hole always plays difficult for me. The left side of the fairway leaves you tree trouble on the approach shot. The river runs all down the right side. The best line is straight at the Y-shaped tree trunk you can see in the distance.
You can’t really see the contouring in this photo, but believe me it’s there. I have three putted here before and have seen some four and five putts. It is one of the most devilish greens on the property.
This is the hardest par three on the course in my opinion. It is all carry over the water. Any miss short will roll away. Anything right will be lucky to catch a piece of land.
This tee shot demands a straight shot. The river runs the entire right side of the hole and the pond you can see here extends a long way down the left. A three wood is a good strategy.
This is a bit of a screwy hole to me. The drive must be straight. There is water and bunkers left and a hazard right. I usually can’t get home in two so I again hit something just over 200 yards.
The tee shot here does not need a to be incredibly long. The fairway runs out if you go up the right side. A nice little draw with a three wood is my go to play.
This hole plays out of the chute and bends to the left. You can hit driver down to a long iron here. It all depends on what you want to hit into the green.
The approach plays to a slightly raised green with some deep bunkers guarding the front. There is a big ridge down the middle making direction important. Putts are extremely difficult from the opposite side of the ridge.
This hole plays a little uphill. Left is a tougher up and down than right. Otherwise, it’s a short hole, so aim right at the flag.
This is the first hole in a while that you can bust it as far as you want. The best line is right up the gut. You can run out of room if you hit it up the left side.
There is plenty of trouble on the right side of this hole. A fade down the left side of the fairway is the best play. You can get away with not hitting driver here.
This is a more inviting tee shot in the winter time since the trees don’t encroach on the fairway as much. Driver is usually too much club here. The hole makes a left turn just past 150 yards from the green.
Depending on how far you hit the ball driver may be too much on this hole. The trees are in play on the right and there is a hill with deep grass through the fairway. You must also avoid the left side since the river runs the entire length of the hole.
The penultimate hole plays up the hill adding about ten yards of distance. The small bunker on the right sees a lot of action.
The King doesn’t take it easy on you for the last hole of the day. A big drive is needed to give yourself a good approach shot. The fairway tilts to the left so a small draw up the middle is the best line.
The approach shot is all carry over the hazard. Your view is obscured by the vegetation so focus is key. You can see the clubhouse looking down on the green. This is a good spot to watch approach shots on 9 and 18.
The green is guarded by a waste bunker that wraps all the way from the right side that you see here around the front and to the left. The green is very deep. You can see the ridge running behind the flag from this angle. We finished just before dusk providing some nice playing conditions.
This course will beat you up. It is target golf. Simply put most missed shots will result in at least one penalty shot. There are sloping greens and difficult up and downs. There are also plenty of waste bunkers with varying sand conditions. Your game needs to be sharp from tee to green to score here.
That being said the scenery is great. You really feel like you can unplug here and get away. The only noise is from the road that runs past a few holes. The clubhouse provides a large back patio and restaurant. It is a fantastic spot to watch other players. You have a view of three full holes. So hang with your buddies and take a minute to relax while other players have to stress out.