World Woods Golf Club (Pine Barrens)

World Woods Golf Club (Pine Barrens) – Played 2016

  • Rankings: Golf Digest Public #76, Golf Magazine Public #19
  • Location: 17590 Ponce De Leon Boulevard, Brooksville, Florida
  • Year: 1993
  • Architect: Tom Fazio
  • Course Access: Public
  • Walking Rules: Carts Available

Score Card Information:

  • Yellow: 7,237 yards, Par 71, 75.3 Rating/133 Slope
  • Black: 6,817 yards, Par 71, 72.5 Rating/131 Slope
  • Green: 6,316 yards, Par 71, 70.2 Rating/125 Slope
  • White: 5,891 yards, Par 71, 68.5 Rating/118 Slope
  • Orange: 4,983 yards, Par 71, 68.4 Rating/114 Slope

We had a little longer drive from Palm Coast to Brooksville.  I will say that I didn’t expect to find much in this town as I had heard it was in the middle of nowhere.  While it was certainly not a metropolis, there were plenty of places to eat on the main drag.  I was pleasantly surprised.

Let’s go over some of the history of this complex.  Opened in 1993 by the World Woods Corporation, the land it sits on was purchased from Florida Crush Stone, Punta Gorda Isles and several privately held properties.

The name came from the ideal of providing world class golf to the masses.  This includes a massive practice facility with a 23 acre, circular range, 36 hole putting course, an iron range, and more putting greens.

The course has received plenty of love from the golf media as seen below.

WW - CLUB 2Below is a scoring area used for tournaments.

WW - CLUB 1Below is one of the massive putting greens.

WW - PG 1 WW - PG 2Below is a shot of the flags.

WW - FLAGI want to get something out of the way before I get into the course tour.  I don’t know the financial situation of World Woods.  They charge a very affordable rate and I am appreciative of that.  However, I thought the course would be in better shape due to the praise I had heard about it.  Funny enough, I had read on some forums people said it was in great shape around the time I played it.  I don’t know if it is all in the eye of the beholder or what.  I don’t tend to demand too much from course condition when you are paying less than $50, but I thought it could have been a little improved.  That being said the greens ran really smooth!  Alright, I’m off my soapbox.  Feel free to sign off in the comments if you’ve played it and disagree.  I am always up for friendly debate!

I chose the green tees.  It’s vacation and I wasn’t trying to beat myself up too much!

Hole 1 – 371 yards – Par 4

The first tee shot is downhill.  You can go less than driver.  There is plenty of room out there.

WW 1-1The second should be a short shot up the hill.  You can’t see the surface of the green.

WW 1-2Here is a little closer look.

WW 1-3The green is pretty large and has a dome shape.  The shadows are wreaking a little havoc here.

WW 1-4Hole 2 – 397 yards – Par 4

This is also slightly downhill from the tee.  A good play is a fade starting at the bunker in the middle of the photo.

WW 2-1Here’s your humble writer taking a swing on the tee.

WW 2-2Below is the view from the left side of the fairway.  The green is flat.  With the tree on the left a draw is the favored play.

WW 2-3Here is a look at the green from a little short.

WW 2-4And a slightly closer look.

WW 2-5Hole 3 – 136 yards – Par 3

This is a great little hole.  Sorry for the sun that is obscuring your view.

WW 3-1Here is a closer look from about 40 yards out.

WW 3-2The green is angled to the tee.  You can see the edge of the hazard that guards the green.

WW 3-3Hole 4 – 467 yards – Par 5

This is an interesting hole.  I didn’t know quite where to hit it off the tee.  I have decided after playing that it is best to take it a little left of the big waster bunker you see in front of the tee.

WW 4-1Here is a zoomed-in look.

WW 4-2This is the look from the second shot area.

WW 4-3From slightly closer, the green is behind the gargantuan bunker.

WW 4-4If your layup is a little too far left you will be faced with some tree trouble.

WW 4-5The view from behind the green shows just how close the tree is to the putting surface.

WW 4-6Hole 5 – 361 yards – Par 4

The main issue here is the treeline down the left.  No need to overthink strategy here.  Whatever you can hit down the middle should leave you with a manageable approach.

WW 5-1The second shot plays up the hill to a green you can’t really see.  Bunkers guard both sides.

WW 5-2Here is a look at the green.  You can see the ridge near this pin position.

WW 5-3Hole 6 – 508 yards – Par 5

This one is long and straight.  Bust the driver here.

WW 6-1The second shot is like the tee shot.  The green is down there somewhere.

WW 6-2I couldn’t get there in two and this is the third shot I had.  From here the bunker you see isn’t in play.

WW 6-3Here is a look at the green complex.

WW 6-4Hole 7 – 176 yards – Par 3

This one is ever so slightly down the hill.  There is a lot of sand in the middle and continuing up the right.  A fade works very well here and goes over the least amount of trouble.

WW 7-1Here is a closer look.

WW 7-2You can see the slope of the green below.

WW 7-3Hole 8 – 361 yards – Par 4

This hole is a gentle bender to the right.  You can see the massive waste area all up the right side.  Obviously you want to favor the left side on this one.

WW 8-1The waste area we saw from the tee continues all the way up to the green.  From this angle you must carry the sand to get to the flag.

WW 8-2Here is a view from behind the green.  You don’t want to be in this area with the thin grass and sandy soil.  Making good contact on chips is nearly impossible.

WW 8-3Hole 9 – 407 yards – Par 4

The last tee shot on the front is a little narrow.  Your goal is to split the bunker you see out in front of the tee box.

WW 9-1Below is a look at the approach.

WW 9-2There isn’t a lot to this green as you can see below.

WW 9-3Hole 10 – 159 yards – Par 3

The back nine starts out with a one-shotter.  This is a tough tee shot for me with the trees so close on the right.  I like to move it right to left.  So for all you faders out there, enjoy.

WW 10-1Here is a closer look.

WW 10-2The side view of the green is seen below.

WW 10-3Hole 11 – 386 yards – Par 4

Here’s another one with plenty of trees.  You still need to split the bunker here.  The less curve the better.

WW 11-1The approach features a large waste area, but it isn’t really in play.

WW 11-2Below is a look at the large green from the right.

WW 11-3Hole 12 – 432 yards – Par 4

This hole opens up after the last few tighter holes.  A good line is splitting the tee markers just ahead of you.

WW 12-1There is some wildlife in the woods here.  Check it out below.

WW 12-2The approach plays up the hill to a green tucked back in a little pocket.  It is not a very long shot from here.

WW 12-3I wanted to show you the large waste area along the right side of this hole.

WW 12-4Here is a closer look.  You want to avoid this thing off the tee.

WW 12-5Below is the putting surface.  You can see the sloping throughout this green.

WW 12-6Hole 13 – 395 yards – Par 4

The waste area draws your eye here.  With a good drive you will sail right over it.  You do want to keep the tee shot a little left for the best angle.

WW 13-1Here is a look at the approach shot.

WW 13-2A little closer look shows the wild undulation in the green.  It moves from left to right and back to front.

WW 13-3You can also see the extreme slope from this view.

WW 13-4Hole 14 – 518 yards – Par 5

You hit out of a bit of a chute here which guides you on where to hit it.  Down the middle here.

WW 14-1If you push your tee shot you will be looking at this view.  The green is well past the tree.

WW 14-2I had to bunt one to this location.  The green is obscured by the tree on the left.

WW 14-3A closer look shows the bunkering around the green and the undulations in the putting surface.

WW 14-4Below you can see the overall slope from back to front.  Putts from the back of the green are very difficult.

WW 14-5Hole 15 – 322 yards – Par 4

This is a hole with options off the tee.  If you go directly at the green the carry is much less than that listed yardage.  You can go at the green which is slightly to the right.  You can also hit something 200 yards out to the left.

WW 15-1This zoomed-in look shows the drive you must hit to the green.  It is open in front to allow some run out.

WW 15-2Should you choose to not go at the green this is the shot you are facing.  It is semi-blind.

WW 15-3The green is quite large and undulating.  With going at the green being an option, the main defense of the hole is the putting surface.  However, with this front pin birdies are available.

WW 15-4Hole 16 – 164 yards – Par 3

This par three sits in a little hollow.  The pond is not in play.  Here is a shot of me taking it on.

WW 16-1The green sits at an angle to the green.  This is from the left side so the green goes left to right from the tee.  There is a lot of slope from back right to front left.

WW 16-2Hole 17 – 370 yards – Par 4

The length on this hole does not dictate hitting driver every time.  Whatever you hit it will need to be straight with all the sand down the right.

WW 17-1Below is a zoomed-in look so you can see the green.

WW 17-2Here is a look at the approach.

WW 17-3The green is pretty flat overall.

WW 17-4The wife took another nature shot below.

WW 17-5Here is another angle of the green.

WW 17-6Hole 18 – 386 yards – Par 4

The last tee shot opens up for you and is not overly taxing.  If you hit a draw you can hit it as far as you want.  A straight ball may run out of real estate depending on how far you hit it.

WW 18-1The approach plays to a smallish green you can see below.  You can see the bunkers have tufts of grass in them that add another layer of difficulty.

WW 18-2Here is a closer look.  The bunker really nestles up to the side of the green and blocks this flag.

WW 18-3This angle shows the waviness of the outside edges of the green.  There is also a small ridge that runs through the middle of the putting surface.

WW 18-4I really liked the layout here.  As I mentioned there were some conditioning issues, but you can’t beat the value.  I am going to assume they were just having a bad time with the conditioning and that it is not indicative of the course on a regular basis.  There is another 18 here that I didn’t get to play.  If you find yourself in the area it is definitely worth a play if not for anything but the value.

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7 thoughts on “World Woods Golf Club (Pine Barrens)

  1. Jimmy,

    This looks like an awesome layout for $50. Just based on your photos, the fairways and greens looked to be in decent shape, but a couple rough looking tee boxes and rough spots elsewhere. Harder to get a true appreciation of conditions just from photos though. Surely much easier to stomach when paying that price, especially since the greens were good.

    Cheers
    Josh

    1. Josh, I agree. I think my overall point is that I just didn’t see it as being as highly ranked as it is. I know the rankings are political and more of a guide for me. I guess I was just expecting a bit more. But you’re right, for the money it is a really good deal.

  2. FatGuyGolf

    It’s been several years since I played it, but I thought World Woods Pine Barrens course was a very good layout, and it was in decent shape back then. And while it was a definitively a fun course, I too wondered how it was so highly ranked when I can think of at least 4 “sand barrens” public courses in New Jersey with more interesting layouts in better condition. With the Pine Barrens course modeled after Pine Valley and the sister Royal Oaks modeled after Augusta, this a great “wanna-be” pairing for Joe Average golfer. Worth the drive to get there, but service was lacking during my visit.

    1. I definitely know what you mean. I think I just had a preconceived notion about the place and then was let down. I try not to do that with courses and just let the experience happen. This was a reminder to keep doing that.

  3. I played WW in 2004 and 2011. The 2004 iteration was better in terms of course conditioning. I had heard they had to cut back their maintenance budget by a ton to sustain a profit. This showed in 2011, as I found the conditions good, but not nearly what they were. This could also be because I played in December in 2004 and April in 2011.

    I still recommend World Woods to anyone who hasn’t played. Take a cart for sure. In 2011, I tried to hoof it. Given the heat and humidity, I was done by hole 7, and glad another single in a cart picked me up for the rest of the round.

    I think the 4th may be the best par 5 I’ve ever played. If it’s not, it’s top 3 for sure. So many options tee-to-green, with very attractive bunkering. I’m not a Fazio fan at all, but he did good here.

    Rolling Oaks is worth a play if one gets the chance. It’s certainly the B course on property, but it’s fun. I actually didn’t play RO in 2011. I ended up hurting myself on my approach shot at 18 at PB and had to call it a day.

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