Players' Picks: Top 10 PGA Tour Courses

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  • The Complete List:
    1. Augusta National GC (Augusta, Ga., The Masters)
    2. Harbour Town GL (Hilton Head Island, S.C., The Heritage)
    3. Riviera CC (Pacific Palisades, Calif., Northern Trust Open)
    4. Pebble Beach GL (Pebble Beach, Calif., AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am)
    5. Colonial CC (Fort Worth, Tex., Crown Plaza Invitational)
    6. Muirfield Village GC (Dublin, Ohio, The Memorial)
    7. Shaugnessy G&CC (Vancouver, B.C., RBC Canadian Open)
    8. Aronimink GC (Newtown Square, Penn., AT&T National)
    9. Innisbrook Resort - Copperhead (Palm Harbor, Fla., Transitions Championship)
    10. Congressional CC (Bethesda, Md., AT&T National)
    11. TPC Sawgrass - Stadium (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., The Players)
    12. Firestone CC - South (Akron, Ohio, WGC-Bridgestone Invitational)
    13. Spyglass Hill GC (Pebble Beach, Calif., AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am)
    14. Quail Hollow Club (Charlotte, N.C., Wells Fargo Championship)
    15. Sea Island Resort - Seaside (St. Simons Island, Ga., McGladrey Classic)
    16. Ridgewood CC - Composite (Paramus, N.J., The Barclays)
    17. Plainfield CC (Edison, N.J., The Barclays)
    18. East Lake GC (Atlanta, Ga., Tour Championship)
    19. Monterey Peninsula CC - Shore (AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am)
    20. Waialae CC (Honolulu, Hawaii, Sony Open)
    21. Mayakoba Resort - El Camaleon (Riviera Maya, Mexico, Mayakoba Classic)
    22. St. George's G&CC (Etobicoke, Ontario, RBC Canadian Open)
    23. TPC Southwind (Memphis, Tenn., FedEx St. Jude Classic)
    24. TPC Deere Run (Silvis, Ill., John Deere Classic)
    25. TPC River Highlands (Cromwell, Conn., Travelers Championship)
    26. La Quinta CC (La Quinta, Calif., Humana Challenge)
    27. PGA National - Champion (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., Honda Classic)
    28. TPC Scottsdale (Scottsdale, Ariz., Waste Management Phoenix Open)
    29. TPC Boston (Norton, Mass., Deutsche Bank Championship)
    30. Cordevalle GC (San Martin, Calif., Frys.com Open)
    31. Torrey Pines - South (La Jolla, Calif., Farmers Insurance Open)
    32. Doral Resort - TPC Blue Monster (Miami, Fla., WGC-Cadillac Championship)
    33. Bay Hill Club & Lodge (Orlando, Fla., Arnold Palmer Invitational)
    34. Greenbrier Resort - The Old White TPC (White Sulfer Springs, W.Va., Greenbrier Classic)
    35. Sedgefield CC (Greensboro, N.C., Wyndham Championship)
    36. PGA West - Arnold Palmer Private (La Quinta, Calif., Humana Challenge)
    37. Montreux G&CC (Reno, Nev., Reno-Tahoe Open)
    38. Walt Disney World Resort - Magnolia (Lake Buena Vista, Fla., Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Challenge)
    39. TPC Summerlin (Las Vegas, Nev., Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals For Children Open)
    40. Glen Abbey (Oakville, Ont., RBC Canadian Open)
    41. Trump International GC - Championship (Rio Grande, Puerto Rico Open)
    42. Redstone GC - Tournament (Humble, Tex., Shell Houston Open)
    43. The Plantation Course At Kapalua (Kapalua, Hawaii, Hyundai Tournament of Champions)
    44. PGA West - Jack Nicklaus Private (La Quinta, Calif., Humana Challenge)
    45. TPC Louisiana (Avondale, La., Zurich Classic of New Orleans)
    46. Cog Hill G&CC (Lemont, Ill., BMW Championship)
    47. Walt Disney World Resort - Palm (Lake Buena Vista, Fla., Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Challenge)
    48. Torrey Pines GC - North (La Jolla, Calif., Farmers Insurance Open)
    49. TPC Four Seasons Resort Las Colinas (Irving, Tex., HP Byron Nelson Championship)
    50. TPC San Antonio - AT&T Oaks (San Antonio, Tex., Valero Texas Open)
    51. Ritz-Carlton GC - Dove Mountain (Marana, Ariz., WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship)
    52. Liberty National GC (Jersey City, N.J., The Barclays)


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    2013-14 Ranking: America's 100 Greatest Public Courses


    (Rank among 2011's 100 Greatest listed in parentheses)
    CLICK ON COURSE NAMES FOR MORE INFO.

    1. (1) PEBBLE BEACH G. LINKS
    Pebble Beach / 800-654-9300 / pebblebeach.com
    6,828 yards, Par 72 | Points: 68.1169

    Architecturally, there are a few better-designed courses than Pebble Beach. (After all, it's only No. 6 on America's 100 Greatest.) But no course tugs more at one's emotions. (Nine holes right on Carmel Bay -- the Nicklaus victories -- Watson's chip-in.) This is the course every fan wants to play, No. 1 on our ranking of Most Fun Public Courses last September. Our latest round took over 5 hours, as it seemed like every player wanted to film his every shot for memory's sake. Well, it's Pebble Beach. We relaxed and went with the flow.


    2. (3) WHISTLING STRAITS (STRAITS)
    Haven, Wis. / 800-344-2838 / whistlingstraits.com
    7,790, Par 72 | Points: 65.4037

    Pete Dye transformed dead-flat two-mile stretch of Lake Michigan frontage (once slated for a nuclear power plant) into what many call the Pebble Beach of the Midwest, although it's more akin to Ireland's Ballybunion. Where the Straits is superior than either of those two iconic courses is in its par-3 holes. All four border Lake Michigan and are outstanding.


    3. (2) PACIFIC DUNES
    Bandon, Ore. / 888-345-6008 / bandondunesgolf.com
    6,633 yards, Par 71 | Points: 65.2226

    Every hole causes your jaw to drop, every shot makes your pulse quicken. Plus, it's hard to believe that Pacific Dunes is not entirely natural, that some dunes were manmade, that some of the sand pits that edge fairways or greens weren't simply carved by ocean gales. Seamless architecture is what minimalist design is all about. Where the land was deficient, Tom Doak enhanced it in ways not readily detected.


    4. (4) THE OCEAN COURSE
    Kiawah Island, S.C. / 888-854-2924 / kiawahgolf.com
    7,356 yards, Par 72 | Points: 64.9984

    On the opposite coast from Pacific Dunes and far different. Some might call The Ocean Course a links, but water comes into play with annoying frequency and only some of the greens accept low, running approach shots, on Paspalum turf that is not conducive to bump-and-run. The Ocean Course is simply another example of the ingenuity and versatility of designer Pete Dye. Anyone who finds a resemblance to Dye's Whistling Straits in this course is pulling your leg.


    5. (6) SHADOW CREEK
    North Las Vegas, Nev. / 866-260-0069 / shadowcreek.com
    7,560 yards, Par 72 | Points: 64.0959

    One of a kind, and maybe Tom Fazio's finest work ever. Shadow Creek plays like a musical composition in three movements, with alternating heavy beats and light moments, building to an resounding crescendo. Every golfer should experience Shadow Creek at least once. Few remember Shadow Creek started out as a private course. It was Golf Digest's Best New Private Course of 1990.


    6. (5) BANDON DUNES
    Bandon, Ore. / 888-345-6008 / bandondunesgolf.com
    6,732 yards, Par 72 | Points: 63.3770

    Maybe not as visually mesmerizing as Whistling Straits (which it beat for Best New Upscale Public Course of 1999), but talented golfers consider Bandon Dunes to be the consummate shotmaker's course, as good a total examination of one's game as there is in America. What's more, the holes are a more natural fit into the windswept terrain than the mammoth-mounded Straits Course. Bandon Dunes is also ranked sixth among our 50 Most Fun Public Courses.


    7. (8) PINEHURST RESORT (No. 2)
    Pinehurst, N.C. / 800-487-4653 / pinehurst.com
    7,495 yards, Par 72 | Points: 63.2606

    Pinehurst No. 2 has long been considered a great second-shot course because of its convex greens that demand precise iron play. After preparing the course for the 1999 U.S. Open, architect Rees Jones proclaimed No. 2 to be the greatest recovery-shot golf course in America. With Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw re-introducing hardpan rough and distressed turf off every fairway, No. 2 is now a great test of tee shots, too.


    8. (7) BETHPAGE STATE PARK (Black)
    Farmingdale, N.Y. / 516-249-4040 / nysparks.state.ny.us
    7,366 yards, Par 71 | Points: 63.1606

    Gone are its rock hard tees, gravely bunkers, patchy fairways and thatchy greens. Bethpage Black now has the conditioning of a U.S. Open or Tour stop, both of which it has been in recent years. No need to sleep in the parking lot just to get a tee time anymore (just go online), but you may still have to verify your handicap. As a sign near the first tee states, Bethpage Black is an extremely difficult course recommended only for highly skilled players.


    9. (9) TPC SAWGRASS (Players Stadium)
    Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. / 904-273-3235 / tpcsawgrass.com
    7,215 yards, Par 72 | Points: 63.0514

    When TPC Sawgrass first opened, most tour pros hated it. (Remember Jack Nicklaus's description of those original greens? Like hitting a 5-iron onto the hood of a Volkswagen, he said.) So Pete Dye ripped up 10 greens to make them fairer. No need for average players to dread this fantasy come to life. Dye insists he designed the course so high handicappers can shoot their handicap if they'll simply use the appropriate tees and tack their way around the course, ignoring the heroic carries where real disaster awaits.


    10. (New) ERIN HILLS G. CSE.
    Erin, Wisc. / 866-772-4769 / erinhills.com
    7,823 yards, Par 72 | Points: 62.9113

    Despite the legend, Erin Hills wasn't designed initially to host a U.S. Open. Its original concept was a simple lay-of-the-land layout that would prove Mother Nature is indeed the best golf architect. The concept changed -- some greens moved, one blind par-3 eliminated -- as the quest for a U.S. Open grew. Erin Hills will host the event in 2017.


    11. (11) SPYGLASS HILL G. CSE.
    Pebble Beach / 800-654-9300 / pebblebeach.com
    6,960 yards, Par 72 | Points: 62.6363

    What is surprising to first-time players at Spyglass Hill is how hilly the course is, even on dunes holes like the par-4 second. The Monterey Pines are far taller than they appear in photos, too. But there's an intimacy to the holes, like the tandem par 3s -- 12 and 15 -- with tiny greens fronted by deep pools of water -- and an element of whimsy -- like the skinny apostrophe of a green on the fourth.


    12. (NEW) OLD MACDONALD
    Bandon, Ore. / 888-345-6008 / bandondunesgolf.com
    6,978 yards, Par 71 | Points: 62.6150

    When it opened three years ago, we predicted Old Macdonald would eventually become the most popular course at Bandon Dunes Resort, mainly because it has wide fairways and generous greens. At the urging of "Design Fairness proponent" Arthur Little, owner Mike Keiser installed a set of Royal Blue tee markers at 4,258 yards. That should just add to its popularity.


    13. (10) ARCADIA BLUFFS G.C.
    Arcadia, Mich. / 800-494-8666 / arcadiabluffs.com
    7,300 yards, Par 72 | Points: 62.2723

    The rugged dunes-like topography of Arcadia Bluffs was always there, just hidden beneath a forest that was removed to construct the course. What makes this lakefront layout different than other lakeside ones, say Whistling Straits or Bay Harbor, are its distinctive stacked-sod bunkers. They're not circular pot holes found at most links. Arcadia's are curvaceous, with vertical faces that bend and roll around both concave and convex corners.


    14. (15) BLACKWOLF RUN (RIVER)
    Kohler, Wis. / 800-344-2838 / blackwolfrun.com
    7,404 yards, Par 72 | Points: 61.7320

    The first encounter with the serpentine Sheboygan River is from the tee on the gorgeous par-4 fifth, so far right that it merely frames the picture. But it creeps ever closer on the next few holes, always in the slice zone, until the reachable par-4 ninth, where it taunts us to carry it and go directly for the green. The river hugs the next four holes too, then disappears, only to reappear on the last three holes, this time on the left. What a water park.


    15. (12) KARSTEN CREEK G.C.
    Stillwater, Okla. / 405-743-1658 / karstencreek.com
    7,407 yards, Par 72 | Points: 61.5329

    Karsten Creek, winner of Golf Digest's Best New Public Course title in 1994, was developed by Oklahoma State University and thus is also often at the top of rankings of the best collegiate courses in America. Bold in its features and contours, this is Tom Fazio in a surprisingly challenging mood. Karsten Creek is potentially one of the toughest layouts on America's 100 Greatest Public.


    16. (14) BANDON TRAILS
    Bandon, Ore. / 800-345-6008 / bandondunesgolf.com
    6,765 yards, Par 71 | Points: 61.5018

    Bandon Trails is much like Spyglass Hill on the Monterey Peninsula, not directly adjacent to the Pacific Ocean but still a tremendous romp through coast terrain. Its opening and finishing holes are in more rugged sand dunes than Spyglass, and while its forest holes might lack the towering drama of the Monterey pines found at Spyglass, the tumbling topography of Bandon Trails provides a majesty all its own.


    17. (18) THE PETE DYE CSE. AT FRENCH LICK RESORT
    French Lick, Ind. / 888-936-9360 / frenchlick.com
    8,102 yards, Par 72 | Points: 60.9761

    If you're foolish enough to want to play Pete Dye at French Lick from the tips, you'll do a lot of walking back from previous greens to those tees. From the 6,400-yard white markers, however, you'll breeze though an 18. Pete Dye and his companions have twice played the course from those tees in under three-and-a-half hours. It's an incredibly easy walk for a mountain course. Pete Dye at French Lick was Golf Digest's Best New Public Course of 2009.


    18. (21) HARBOUR TOWN G. LINKS
    Hilton Head Island / 800-955-8337 / seapines.com
    7,101 yards, Par 71 | Points: 60.9168

    The 16th at Harbour Town has contributed a term to golf. Back when Pete Dye was building the course, he was asked to dispose of a huge quantity of sewer sludge from housing developments on Hilton Head, so he dug a big pit to the left of the par-4 16th, had it dumped in there, then covered it with acres of sand. The late golf writer Charlie Price, who lived on the island, took one look at it and dubbed it a "waste bunker." Actually, that's the sanitized version of what he called it. But "waste bunker" is the term that stuck.


    19. (17) KAPALUA (Plantation)
    Kapalua, Maui, Hawaii / 877-527-2582 / kapaluamaui.com
    7,411 yards, Par 73 | Points: 60.8925

    Here's a curious fact: Kapalua's Plantation Course, built on old pineapple fields, is irrigated by the same system used a hundred years ago to water those fields. A century-old stone aqueduct brings water from the top of a rain-soaked volcano down to a pond that sits 800 feet above the course. The pond supplies Kapalua's sprinkler system, which is pressurized solely by gravity.


    20. (16) THE QUARRY AT GIANTS RIDGE
    Bibawik, Minn. / 800-688-7669 / giantsridge.com
    7,201 yards, Par 72 | Points: 60.8816

    It doesn't get the press that courses like Bandon Dunes, Pacific Dunes, Whistling Straits or Arcadia Bluffs, but The Quarry at Giants Ridge plays very links-like with its collection of fairway speed slots, greenside bankboards and backstops and reverse camber greens. Its very inventive design also demands some aerial play too, and its 13th is a drivable par-4 that's nearly as wide as it is long, with three alternate routes to a 100-yard-wide green.


    21. (13) THE HIGHLAND COURSE AT PRIMLAND
    Meadows of Dan, Va. / 866-960-7746 / primland.com
    7,053 yards, Par 72 | Points: 60.7456

    The Highland Course at Primland, named in 2007 as the year's Best New Public Course in the $75 and Over category, sits atop a mountain plateau overlooking some of the most unusual scenery in America, a deep river valley dotted with tall spirals of rock. The course design by veteran British architect Donald Steel is austere in its green contours and bunkering, as if not to overpower the setting.


    22. (19) THE PRINCE COURSE
    Princeville, Kauai, Hawaii / 800-826-1105 / princeville.com
    7,378 yards, Par 72 | Points: 60.5374

    The Prince is a prince, indeed. It was Golf Digest's Best New Resort Course of 1990 and a member of America's 100 Greatest from 1993 until this year, when it dropped off. (It's presently No. 107 on our Second 100 Greatest). The course was closed during 2011 to allow for a total renovation. The new and improved Prince now has Seashore Paspalum turf and some of the surrounding jungle cut back for playability.


    23. (20) FOREST DUNES G.C.
    Roscommon, Mich. / 939-275-0700 / forestdunesgolf.com
    7,116 yards, Par 72 | Points: 60.4085

    Forest Dunes is another course, like Spyglass Hill, that has portions that look like Augusta National (pristine turf, pines and gleaming white sand bunkers) and other portions that look like Pine Valley (rugged holes edged by native sand dunes deposited by the nearby Au Sable River). Forest Dunes has clever greens with subtle contouring, with some treacherous pin positions just beyond false fronts of steep putting surface or just beside fall-away ear lobes leading off the sides of greens.


    24. (30) PASATIEMPO G.C.
    Santa Cruz, Calif. / 831-459-9155 / pasatiempo.com
    6,500 yards, Par 70 | Points: 60.3351

    Pasatiempo is arguably Alister Mackenzie's favorite design. After all, he lived along its sixth fairway during the last years of his life. With its elaborate greens and spectacular bunkering fully restored by Tom Doak, Pasatiempo is a classic example of Mackenzie's art. The back nine, playing repeatedly over deep barrancas, is a test for even the most talented of golfers.


    25. (25) CHAMBERS BAY
    University Place, Wash. / 253-460-4653 / chambersbaygolf.com
    7,585 yards, Par 72 | Points: 60.0956

    By the time Golf Digest named Chambers Bay as America's Best New Public Course of 2008, the course had already been awarded the 2010 U.S. Amateur and 2015 U.S. Open by the U.S. Golf Association. In the Amateur, it proved to be hard, both in the firmness of its dry fescue turf (Jones called the fairways, "hardwood floors") and in difficulties around and on the windswept greens. Some greens have been toned down for the Open, which should be a rare experience.


    26. (24) THE HOMESTEAD (Cascades)
    Hot Springs, Va. / 800-838-1766 / thehomestead.com
    6,667 yards, Par 70 | Points: 59.8292

    As Morrison & Paul point out in their comprehensive biography of William S. Flynn, Seth Raynor was originally consulted about building the Cascades course, but declared the property insufficient. So the relative unknown Flynn got the job and made the most of it. Cascades was ranked by Golf Digest as one of America's 100 Greatest for 40 years and is No. 129 on our exclusive Second 100 Greatest ranking in 2013.


    27. (22) MAY RIVER G.C. AT PALMETTO BLUFF
    Bluffton, S.C. / 866-706-6565 / palmettobluff.com
    7,171 yards, Par 72 | Points: 59.8185

    Built some 35 years after nearby Harbour Town Golf Links, May River is an interesting contrast in Jack Nicklaus's portfolio, an equally low-profile layout with a number of bump-and-run approach shots but with several Pine Valley-like waste areas. It has a classic routing with the first nine turning clockwise through forest, the back nine circling counter-clockwise and both touching repeatedly on the wetlands of namesake May River.


    28. (23) PRONGHORN CLUB (Nicklaus)
    Bend, Ore. / 866-372-1003 / pronghornclub.com
    7,379 yards, Par 72 | Points: 59.7940

    When it first opened, Pronghorn was strictly private and its Nicklaus Course was ranked by Golf Digest as No. 2 among America's Best New Private Courses of 2004. Two years ago, the club (which also has a Fazio-designed 18), began allowing public play on its Nicklaus track, whose back nine may be the most delightful Jack has ever designed, with gambling holes and gorgeous scenery at every turn.


    29. (31) THE BROADMOOR G.C. (East)
    Colorado Springs / 800-634-7711 / broadmoor.com
    7,355 yards, Par 72 | Points: 59.6572

    Few golfers recognize that the East Course at The Broadmoor is a combination of Donald Ross holes (one through six and 16 through 18) and Robert Trent Jones ones (holes seven to 15). The East was the site of Jack Nicklaus's first U.S. Amateur win in 1959 and Annika Sorenstam's first U.S. Women's Open win in 1995. It has also hosted the 2008 U.S. Senior Open, won by Eduardo Romero, and 2011 U.S. Women's Open, won by So Yeon Ryu.


    30. (New) DORMIE C.
    West End, N.C. / 855-955-1999 / dormieclub.net
    6,883 yards, Par 71 | Points: 59.6192

    Conceived as an exclusive private club just a few miles north of Pinehurst, the economic downturn forced owners to open its doors to outside play last year. The design is typical of Coore & Crenshaw, a timeless look where holes often play to targets obscured by landforms, bunkers or ground-hugging green contours. Play it soon. One never knows when Dormie will revert to its original business plan.


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    31. (27) MAUNA KEA G. CSE
    Kohala Coast, Hawaii / 808-882-5400 / maunakeabeachhotel.com
    7,370 yards, Par 72 | Points: 59.5374

    The immediate thrill at Mauna Kea is its now-iconic par-3 third, a daunting tee shot over an ocean cove that's a great substitute for those unable to gain an invitation to tackle the 16th at Cypress Point. The remaining holes at Mauna Kea are thrilling too, with constant views of the ocean, awkward lies on sloping fairways and roughs of crunchy lava rock.


    32. (26) OSPREY MEADOWS AT TAMARACK RES.
    Donnelly, Idaho / 208-325-4653 / tamarackidaho.com
    7,319 yards, Par 72 | Points: 59.4615

    Osprey Meadows burst onto the golf scene as the upset victor in Golf Digest's 2006 survey of America's Best New Public Courses $75 and Over, beating out heavy favorite Bandon Trails. It then suffered through a period of economic recession but has regained its bearings and recovered its conditioning. There may be no lovelier course to play during the autumn months.


    33. (37) THE CHALLENGE AT MANELE
    Lanai City, Lanai, Hawaii / 808-565-2222 / golfonlanai.com
    7,039 yards, Par 72 | Points: 59.4052

    If anything, The Challenge at Manele should be even more popular than Mauna Kea, as it has not just one, but three ocean-cove holes, including the par-3 12th and dogleg-right par-4 17th. But it's ranked two positions below (and tiny fraction of a point behind) Mauna Kea. The Challenge is used to being an underdog. It was a seventh place finisher in Golf Digest's ranking of Best New Resort Courses of 1994. (World Woods's Pine Barrens Course won that year.)


    34. (New) THE GREENBRIER (Old White TPC)
    White Sulphur Springs, W.Va. / 855-453-4858 / greenbrier.com
    7,274 yards, Par 70 | Points: 59.2869

    C.B. Macdonald's nearly 100-year-old design of the Old White at The Greenbrier was always respected, but after Lester George's restoration of it (re-establishing such things as a Principal's Nose bunker and Dragon's Teeth mounds), Golf Digest panelists rediscovered its pleasures and ranked it the Best New Public Remodel of 2007.


    35. (29) OLD WAVERLY G.C.
    West Point, Miss. / 662-494-6463 / oldwaverly.com
    7,000 yards, Par 72 | Points: 58.8496

    A carefully crafted design, Old Waverly was No. 3 among Best New Private Courses in 1989 and was the site of Juli Inkster's first U.S. Women's Open win in 1999. It has twice been ranked among America's 100 Greatest, from 1995 to 1998 and from 2005 to 2006. Five years ago, the former private club became semi-private, began accepting outside play and soon made our ranking of America's 100 Greatest Public Courses.


    36. (32) SEA ISLAND G.C. (Seaside)
    St. Simons Island, Ga. / 855-572-4975 / seaisland.com
    7,055 yards, Par 70 | Points: 58.8141

    The resort continues to credit H.S. Colt for its Seaside design, but in truth the present Seaside Course is purely Tom Fazio, who incorporated an original Colt-designed nine (called Seaside) along with the Marshland 9 designed by Joe Lee in 1974 to create a new 18 hole course. But in keeping with the resort's heritage, Fazio styled his new course in the manner of Colt, with big clamshell bunkers as well as exposed sand dunes off most of the windswept fairways.


    37. (28) WOLF CREEK G.C.
    Mesquite, Nev. / 866-252-4653 / golfwolfcreek.com
    6,939 yards, Par 72 | Points: 58.7947

    Wolf Creek is a fantasy calendar come to life, with holes clinging to stark canyon hillsides and plunging down narrow ravines. A genuine amateur architect design (although Jim Engh provided an early routing), Wolf Creek finished third in Golf Digest's survey of America's Best New Upscale Public Courses of 2001, behind Pacific Dunes and Arcadia Shores. All three are now ranked among the Top 40 on this year's America's 100 Greatest Public.


    38. (43) TORREY PINES G. CSE. (South)
    La Jolla, Calif. / 800-985-4653 / torreypinesgolfcourse.com
    7,628 yards, Par 72 | Points: 58.6949

    Torrey Pines sits on one of the prettiest golf course sites in America, atop coastal bluffs north of San Diego with eye dazzling views of the Pacific. Rees Jones's remodeling of the South Course in the early 2000s not only made the course competitive for the 2008 U.S. Open, it brought several coastal canyons into play for everyday play, especially on the par-3 third and par-4 14th. This is the highest ranking yet for Torrey Pines on America's 100 Greatest Public. It once was ranked 93rd.


    39. (35) WHISTLING STRAITS (Irish)
    Haven, Wis. / 855-444-2838 / whistlingstraits.com
    7,201 yards, Par 72 | Points: 58.6420

    The Irish Course has same manufactured dunescape as found on its more famous sister Straits Course, but has three major differences. The fairways are bent grass, not fescue, on the Irish. That allows carts to be used by players. (It's walking only on the Straits.) And the Irish has the only blind par 3 found at Whistling Straits, 183 yards over sand hills to a huge green ringed by over a dozen bunkers. Doesn't get more Irish than that.


    40. (41) FALLEN OAK G.C.
    Saucier, Miss. / 877-805-4657 / fallenoak.com
    7,487 yards, Par 72 | Points: 58.5999

    Although it didn't get built for another 15 years, Fallen Oak Golf Club was first conceived by Las Vegas casino mogul Steve Wynn soon after Tom Fazio had completed Shadow Creek. Wynn wanted Fazio to do a similar course for his Beau Rivage casino hotel on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Wynn's empire got swallowed by MGM Grand, which ultimately had Fazio design Fallen Oak. Unlike Shadow Creek, it's built from a graceful rolling forest dotted with wetlands, so there was no need for mammoth earth-moving.


    Read More http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-courses/2013-02/100-greatest-public-courses#ixzz2x8DKFz8j
     
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