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rembrandt

Have you played on a special course and where?

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I've played on a few:

1.Woodlands Championship course.....where the Pros use to play in Houston!
2.Tall Chief CC in Falls City, Washington.....Not a spectacular course but being from Texas, the course was special to me.
3. Green Valley just south of Tucson.
4 Memorial Park in Houston. Also where the Pros use to play!

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The most special - Royal County Down... After an Irish wedding the night before and setting some kind of record for Guinness consumption. Still managed an 83, but could have been worse... A lot worse. I went off as a single since the starter had a group of Asian tourists filling up the rest of the day. Now there's 50+ folks waiting for me to tee off. Okay, take a nice 2 iron, keep it low and out of the wind and take advantage of the roll. KLACK... A worm burning weed killer about 150 yds. Look back and shrug. Take the long march out to the ball and know that they're still watching. Deep breath and smooth a 5 Iron about 200 yds down the fairway... whew! finished that hole and now I'm lost... no signs directing you where to go, no map on the scorecard. See a slightly trodden path off to the right and follow it, fortunately it led to #2. By #4 I caught up with a Canadian who was a member and a couple of his friends-all of whom had a caddie. I was using a trolley and finding my own way...barely. One of the most enjoyable rounds I ever played in conditions that really tested my game. First few holes were sunny and 60-65 degrees with a breeze off Dundrum Bay, by #6 the wind was screaming at 25kts and it was starting to cloud over. A few holes later it was raining cats and dogs with no wind, and by 13 the temp dropped into the upper 40's with sleet only to jump back up to 60-65 by the time we teed off at 18 staring straight back at the Sleive Donard Towers. I've NEVER, EVER had to change in and out of a rain suit so many times with so many different combinations of top, top and bottoms, bottoms, hood up, sleeves down, sweatshirt off, etc...
thankfully, the guys were really a great bunch and the caddies were a collection of characters- the old grizzled veteran, a youngster and a pro caddie in the making. All of whom helped me out when they could. After 9 holes it was raining really hard and two of the guys dropped out to wait. The Canadian and I kept on and I got the youngster on my trolley- made his job easier, I'll bet. Never had one before so I wasn't exactly sure what was up. It was pretty enjoyable after that, nobody else around and just chatting about nothing special. Even with the wild weather those 9 holes felt like they took about 10 minutes. Hit some of the purest drives I've ever hit, hit a few klunkers into the fescue and a few OUT of the fescue. Never lost a ball, though, and had a decent day of putting and chipping. I asked about what to give the caddy, and when I went to pay 1/2 the fee at the caddie master, he said it was already paid for, just give the lad a ten'r- after all, he didn't carry your bag, he just took it for a walk! I gave him a 20 anyway for all the help.
Then it was off to the 'visitors bar' for a nice whiskey by the fireplace to warm up a bit and watch the rest of the tourists come in. I will always remember that day like it was yesterday, and how much more I enjoyed it than my first round at Pebble Beach.

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Bethpage in Long Island, New York
Shinnecock Hills in Long Island, New York
Will play Hudson National in Croton, NY this year later in the fall
River Course at Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg, VA (site of the LPGA Michelob Open)

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I wish I could tell you I have played Pebble or St Andrews, but alas, my best course ever was the #1 Course in Maine, called Sugarloaf. It is built on a ski resort and is absolutely gorgeous. My son-in-law and I spent a great day there. Some of the most beautiful golf holes I have ever seen. Designed by Robert Trent Jones (not my favorite designer), it was built along the fall line of a freestone river coming down the mountains. Heavily wooded and awe-inspiring elevation changes. Wow! Of course, since I am a southern boy, it was pretty unusual for me to be playing in 80 degree weather in the middle of July too.

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Cabo del Sol (Ocean)
Palmilla Golf Club
Vista Vallarta (both Nicklaus & Weiskopf courses)
Bear's Best (Las Vegas)
Castle Pines
Dromoland Golf Club (Ireland)

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I played Bandon Trails at Bandon Dunes. The course was amazing, but it was raining sideways. Worst weather I've ever played in by far, on by far the nicest course I've played. Kind of a weird day, now that I think about it.

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I have an open invitation to play Bulle Rock (LPGA Championship this past year) in Havre De Grace, MD, For FREE. A guy I play volleyball with said his company has a corp account, and if I can find a day thats good for both our schedules I'm on it!

Ok so i haven't yet .. but i think i will!

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I've a few 'specials':

Stadium Course @ PGA West in La Quinta, CA
Reflection Bay @ Henderson, NV
TPC of Las Vegas @ Las Vegas, NV
Betphage Black @ Long Island, NY
Ridgewood Country Club @ Paramus, NJ
TPC of Tampa Bay @ Tampa, FL
Copperhead @ Clearwater, FL

in 2 weeks this list will be expanded to include:
Kingsbarn @ Scotland, UK
St. Andrews Old Course @ Scotland, UK
Carnoustie @ Scotland, UK

can't wait !

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pretty good year so far:

february: pinehurst #8, #2

april: royal liverpool hoylake (little cooler than when the big boys were there)

may: bulle rock (a stretch to include on this list...)

july: ocean course at kiawah

and tuesday the 15th have a 9:30 tee time at pebble, 16th is spanish bay...

still want to hack it up on the black though...

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Last year at the Newport Cup we played at Pine Needles...it was probably the best course I've played.

The only other course that comes close is Old North State, a private course out in the middle of nowhere here in NC. Gorgeous course and conditions...

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I've played on a few:

Memorial and Woodlands are two of my favorite courses in Houston.

I'm a member of Shadow Hawk Golf Club, which gives me access to Redstone where the PGA Tour does play now. I'm also a member at Whispering Pines Golf Club, my favorite course on earth. http://www.whisperingpinesgolfclub.com/ I just got back from a trip to Sand Hills in Nebraska which was a great experience. Other courses I've played: St. Andrews Turnberry Ailsa Carnoustie Pebble Beach Spyglass Hill Pine Hurst #2, 7 Bethpage Black and Blue Torrey Pines North and South Valhalla Blue Monster at Doral Grayhawk - Talon and Raptor Superstition Mountain There are more, but those are the most memorable. Being in the golf business has some perks.

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My specials :

1) Ocean Course at Kiawah Island - site of 1991 Ryder Cup and 2012 PGA - played in 1993 when I was 16. A 7500 yd course at sea level was an absolute monster at that time. Holy crap. #17 is one of the toughest par-threes I've played. Another hole was 495 yds, par 4, into the howling wind. I spanked driver, spanked 3W, then holed out from 40 yds short for a sweet birdie. That's the only good thing I did that day en route to an 87!

2) TPC at Scottsdale (Stadium) - Actually not a particularly tough course. Fairways are fairly generous, but trouble if you miss.

3) Troon North (Monument) - Scottsdale, AZ - Pure desert sweetness. Best greens I ever played on.

4) Karsten Creek - Stillwater, OK - Very tough track. I don't think it's gotten much press, but it's in the GD Top 100 You Can Play. Awesome conditioning...and you can consider it lost if you hit any kind of foul ball.

5) Wolf Creek - Mesquite, NV - Another scenic masterpiece with one exception...a blind uphill par 3 of 190-200 yds that seems out of place (#5, I think). The rest of the course is gorgeous...the only one in the Mesquite area worth the 150 green fee. Oh, and don't pay the $20 to have your picture taken on the tee...not worth it.

6) Entrada at Snow Canyon - St. George, UT I'd played this a ton of time on Links 1999 on the PC, so I was excited to play this one. Holes 15-17 are a dramatic shift from the rest of the course as they run through an ancient lava flow field. Jet black lava awaits any missed fairway on these three holes - and they're pretty tight. Watch out for ricochets (I speak from experience!) Amazing and punishing.

7) Grand National (Lakes and Links) - Opelika, AL I believe these have hosted the NCAA Div I Championships, men and women, along with some other bg time amateur stuff. Part of the RTJ Trail, they are both challenging, well conditioned, and relatively cheap. I highly recommend every course on the RTJ Trail. The Judge at Capitol Hill , near Montgomery, is a beast at 7800 yds - including a 717 yd par 5 with a 255 yd carry on the tee-shot. I hear they have an 8,000 yd course now as well!

This fall: Trying to arrange a trip to Santa Fe/Albuquerque to play courses on the Santa Fe Trail, including Paa-Ko Ridge and Black Mesa .

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Have only played 2 real memorable courses. Old Waverly in West Point Mississippi, host of the 1999 Womens US Open. The Govenors Club in Chapel Hill NC, brother in law sells real estate their. Got to see Michael Jordon's locker...pretty cool.

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I've been lucky. The short list of my favorites:
Scotland:
Carnoustie
Old Course
Turburry Ailsa
Glen Eagles Kings
U.S.:
Winged Foot (both courses)
Quaker Ridge, NY
Atlantic, NY
Ridgewood, NJ
Somerset Hills, NJ
Metedeconk, NJ
Bethpage Black (my all time favorite course)
Cog Hill Dubsdread, IL
Harbour Town, SC
Kiawah Ocean Course, SC
Secession, SC
Troon North, AZ
and my home course, The Architects Club, NJ

Actually I once tried to make a list of all the courses I've played. Couldn't remember all of them but I think the list ended up at about 175. Like I said, I've been lucky.

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...we played at Pine Needles...it was probably the best course I've played...

Dave, we HAVE to hook up for a trip to Barefoot in Myrtle one day. IMHO - all 4 courses there are nicer than Pine Needles. With game like yours you should be playing all the best tracks in the world.. what a waste

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