The Preserve at Verdae

The Preserve at Verdae – Played December 2016

  • Rankings: None of the four lists
  • Location: 650 Verdae Boulevard, Greenville, South Carolina
  • Year: 1990
  • Architect: Willard Byrd
  • Course Access: Public
  • Walking Rules: Carts Available

Score Card Information:

  • Black: 7,021 yards, Par 72, 73.7 Rating/138 Slope
  • Blue: 6,734 yards, Par 72, 72.4 Rating/133 Slope
  • White: 6,180 yards, Par 72, 69.6 Rating/125 Slope
  • Gold: 5,494 yards, Par 72, 66.7 Rating/112 Slope (Men’s), 71.6 Rating/124 Slope (Women’s)
  • Red: 5,022 yards, Par 72, 68.7 Rating/116 Slope

Once the Clemson football regular season was over a buddy and me decided to tee it up on a Saturday.  He hopped on GolfNow to get a deal and we certainly did.  We were able to get this tee time for $15 a person.

I have known the director of golf here since before I was a teenager.  I also worked here one summer as a cart boy.  I have plenty of connections to it.

That being said, I don’t play it a lot.  It’s not my favorite course because I think it has some silly holes.  It doesn’t fit my eye and I don’t usually recommend it to people. Continue reading “The Preserve at Verdae”

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Keowee Key Country Club

Keowee Key Country Club – Played November 2016

  • Rankings: None of the four lists
  • Location: 1 Country Club Drive, Salem, South Carolina
  • Year: 1973
  • Architect: George Cobb, John LaFoy, & Richard Mandell
  • Course Access: Private
  • Walking Rules: Carts Available

Score Card Information:

  • Blue: 6,426 yards, Par 72, 71.5 Rating/134 Slope
  • White: 6,061 yards, Par 72, 69.8 Rating/128 Slope
  • Gold: 5,472 yards, Par 72, 67.9 Rating/114 Slope
  • Red: 4,934 yards, Par 72, 66.3 Rating/110 Slope (Men’s), 68.7 Rating/119 Slope (Women’s)
  • Orange: 3,807 yards, Par 72, 62.4 Rating/103 Rating

Over the Thanksgiving holiday I got an opportunity to play a fun private course around Clemson University.  A little bit of background on the round.  One of my buddies recently got engaged, which was great news to be sure.  Well his future father-in-law was going to be in town for various reasons over the holiday and wanted to see Clemson.  My friend set up the day to include a tour around Clemson and a round here at Keowee Key through another friend.  So that was the setting for our Friday round the day before the huge rivalry game with USC.

The course is set up within a residential community where you must be a property owner to be a member.  I can’t tell you the demographics of the community, but the course is set up to cater to retirees.  Overall, the course is short with many doglegs.  I hit driver maybe twice the entire day.  While it is not a long course it is quite fun and playable.  There are many elevated greens and distance control is a factor in posting a good number.

I have included a slideshow below for you to view the holes.  There was a shotgun so we started on 18 and so does the slideshow.  We had a great time playing the course.  I enjoyed getting to know my friend’s future father-in-law.  It is always fun to show Clemson off to new people and finding a way to get a new course in is a bonus.  We capped the day with a few beers at one our favorite watering holes from college.  The weekend was finished off with a resounding victory over our hated instate rivals.  Can’t think of much better than that.  Go Tigers!

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Calumet Country Club

Calumet Country Club – Played October 2016

  • Rankings: None of the four lists
  • Location: 175th Street & Western Avenue, Homewood, Illinois
  • Year: 1917
  • Architect: Donald Ross
  • Course Access: Private
  • Walking Rules: Carts & Caddies Available

Score Card Information:

  • Blue: 6,619 yards, Par 71, 72.5 Rating/134 Slope
  • White: 6,326 yards, Par 71, 71.1 Rating/131 Slope (Men’s), 77.1 Rating/142 Slope (Women’s)
  • Silver: 5,534 yards, Par 71, 67.5 Rating/121 Slope (Men’s), 72.7 Rating/133 Slope (Women’s)
  • Red: 5,015 yards, Par 72, 65.1 Rating/115 Slope (Men’s), 69.8 Rating/126 Slope (Women’s)

I was lucky to play another private club in the Chicagoland area for my final round of my October trip.  Mark, my friend from GolfMatch, was hosting an outing at his club and invited me to play in it.  I was happy to say yes and meet some fellow GolfMatchers.

Designed by the legendary Donald Ross, the course has hosted many important events such as the 1924 Western Open and 1945 Chicago Victory Open.  The latter served as one of 11 straight won by Byron Nelson in his epic streak.

The course is not overly long, but as a par 71 it plays longer than the yardage.  For our event we played the tips. Continue reading “Calumet Country Club”

White Deer Run Golf Club

White Deer Run Golf Club – Played October 2016

  • Rankings: None of the four lists
  • Location: 250 West Gregg’s Parkway, Vernon Hills, IL
  • Year: 1998
  • Architect: Dick & Tim Nugent
  • Course Access: Public
  • Walking Rules: Carts Available

Score Card Information:

  • Black: 7,149 yards, Par 72, 74.5 Rating/148 Slope
  • Gold: 6,816 yards, Par 72, 72.9 Rating/144 Slope
  • Blue: 6,484 yards, Par 72, 71.4 Rating/140 Slope
  • White: 6,039 yards, Par 72, 69.4 Rating/135 Slope (Men’s), 75.4 Rating/135 Slope (Women’s)
  • Red: 5,028 yards, Par 72, 69.8 Rating/123 Slope

After my morning round, I was left scrambling a little bit to figure out an afternoon tee time.  Luckily, I was able to get in contact with Mike, who I played with at Spanish Bay back in June.  I was happy to play with Mike again since he is a fun guy to tee it up with and he keeps the mood light.  We met up to play and zipped around the course.

White Deer Run is a fun track even though it may not be too flashy.  It is in a residential area that is a relatively flat piece of land, but the holes have variety.  I also found the greens to run very smoothly.  For the green fee I paid I thought the course conditioning was very good.  Check out the slideshow below to see the course from start to finish.  Some of my favorite holes were 4, 9, 11, and 15.

Another fun tidbit is that Top 100 teacher Todd Sones is based here.  You can come play a nice course, but also get the highest quality teaching while you are here.  The course also features a restaurant on site.  While I didn’t eat there it did look to be quite good.

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The Cliffs at Keowee Falls

The Cliffs at Keowee Falls – Played September 2016

  • Rankings: None of the four lists
  • Location: 770 S. Cherry Laurel Way, Salem, South Carolina
  • Year: 2007
  • Architect: Jack Nicklaus
  • Course Access: Private
  • Walking Rules: Carts Available

Score Card Information:

  • Black: 7,171 yards, Par 72, 75.4 Rating/140 Slope
  • Blue: 6,686 yards, Par 72, 72.9 Rating/137 Slope
  • White: 6,354 yards, Par 72, 71.2 Rating/134 Slope
  • Gold: 5,884 yards, Par 72, 68.9 Rating/130 Slope (Men’s), 73.9 Rating/134 Slope (Women’s)
  • Red: 5,182 yards, Par 72, 69.9 Rating/124 Slope

I had played this course about eight years ago, which was not too long after it opened.  I didn’t remember much of it, so this was like getting to play a new course.  Even better than that was that this was a tournament related to work.  There’s nothing like getting out of the office yet still feeling like you accomplished something.  I also got to bond with some of my colleagues on the links. Continue reading “The Cliffs at Keowee Falls”

Sweetens Cove Golf Club

Sweetens Cove Golf Club – Played August 2016

  • Rankings: None of the four lists
  • Location: 2040 Sweetens Cove Road, South Pittsburg, Tennessee
  • Year: 2015
  • Architect: King Collins Golf Course Design
  • Course Access: Public
  • Walking Rules: Carts Available

Score Card Information:

  • Black: 3,301 yards, Par 36, Not Yet Rated
  • Blue: 3,093 yards, Par 36, Not Yet Rated
  • White: 2,726 yards, Par 36, Not Yet Rated
  • Red: 2,2,72 yards, Par 36, Not Yet Rated

I got the chance to connect with a good friend from social media recently at Sweetens Cove Golf Club.  This place is awesome.  It’s barely a year old, but it is a wonderful layout.  The property is pure golf.  They don’t have a clubhouse or a restaurant.  Just show up, pay, and play until your heart’s content.

On our day we played 36 or 45 holes, I can’t quite remember.  What I do know is that is was an awesome experience and the course has so much character.  Even though there are only 9 holes, you can create so many more with alternate routings.  The place is an absolute gem. Continue reading “Sweetens Cove Golf Club”

The Shattuck Golf Club

The Shattuck Golf Club – Played Multiple Years

  • Rankings: None of the four lists
  • Location: 53 Dublin Road, Jaffrey, New Hampshire
  • Year: 1991
  • Architect: Brian Silva
  • Course Access: Public
  • Walking Rules: Carts Available

Score Card Information:

  • Black: 6,764 yards, Par 71, 75.0 Rating/147 Slope
  • Blue: 6,077 yards, Par 71, 70.8 Rating/141 Slope
  • White: 5,412 yards, Par 71, 68.4 Rating/130 Slope (Men’s), 73.9 Rating/135 Slope (Women’s)
  • Red: 4,632 yards, Par 71, 67.6 Rating/125 Slope (Men’s), 73.1 Rating/139 Slope (Women’s)
  • Gold: 4,393 yards, Par 71, 64.6 Rating/127 Slope (Men’s), 66.2 Rating/125 Slope (Women’s)

The Shattuck is one of the courses I played while spending my summers in New Hampshire.  A friend of my grandfather would take me around to many courses in the state to get me exposure to different places.  For that I am very thankful and want to give Steve a shoutout.  Let’s get into a little of the background on the course.

The course sits near the base of Mt. Monadnock.  The mountain is in your field of vision for much of the course and is really pretty to look at.  As you will see from the photos, wetlands and other hazards are not far from the playing surface.  This is the primary defense of the course as it is not overly long.  The golfer will have to put them out of his or her mind to score well.  While it can be difficult, don’t be discouraged.  Per the course’s website, if you can hit the ball 75 yards in the air, you can play any of the holes.  That being said, it has made the list of the Top 100 toughest courses in the country.  I highly recommend getting the player’s guide to help you navigate the course.

Hole 1 – 357 yards – Par 4

You need to be careful from the very first tee shot here.  As you can see in the photo below, there is a creek that cuts across the fairway at the 150 yard marker.  You have to make the decision to lay up short or challenge it with the driver.

sha-1Hole 2 – 146 yards – Par 3

This hole plays from an elevated tee to a green that sits at an angle.  The downhill slope must be accounted for as the easy mistake here is going long.  Anything in the middle of the green is a solid shot.

sha-2Hole 3 – 343 yards – Par 4

I had some technical issues with the photo here so it is a little smaller.  The green sits a in a stadium-like setting.  The challenge on this hole is the narrow fairway.  There is a hazard on the left and a ledge on the right that requires a good shot to clear.

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Hole 4 – 312 yards – Par 4

Thankfully this is a shorter hole and you can afford to not hit driver.  It is definitely a tight landing area.  You must be aware of the wetlands down the left side, while the bunkers on the right are no picnic.

sha-4Hole 5 – 551 yards – Par 5

This can be a monstrous hole from the back tees as it plays over 600 yards.  The tee shot plays to a narrow fairway.  The hole has trouble on both sides most of the hole.  The green is seen below.  It is carved into a large rock ledge and sits behind a peaceful stream.  The Shattuck is just not like many places you have played before.

sha-5Hole 6 – 508 yards – Par 5

I always think it’s a nice change of pace to have back to back par fives.  This hole is the definition of target golf.  There are two landing areas.  There is no need to get too aggressive.  Just play the course and hope to make a putt.

sha-6Hole 7 – 183 yards – Par 3

This longer par 3 plays over more wetlands that are definitely all carry.  There is a small area to the right to bail out, but otherwise this hole requires a well-struck shot.

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Hole 8 – 373 yards – Par 4

This hole has some scenic views.  You need precision with your tee shot since you need to carry a waste area, but also cannot go to far or you risk being blocked out from the green.  Welcome to The Shattuck.

sha-8Hole 10 – 394 yards – Par 4

Continue reading “The Shattuck Golf Club”