< link rel="DCTERMS.isreplacedby" href="http://jayflemma.travelgolf.com" >

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

High scores coming for Kiawah Island Ocean course, Bulls Bay

I'll have longer pieces up soon, but both Bulls Bay and the Ocean course at Kiawah Island are among the best courses South Carolina has to offer. Kiawah makes a strong argument for the best course in the state and sports the highest slope in the country. It's still playable, but man you better hit it straight. It's murder on amateurs. Lots of marshy water on the right on the back and really thick difficult sand in the waste areas.

Go figure, but who would have thought a MIke Strantz course would be a low impact day, but that's what the amazing Bulls Bay is in comparison. I shot 20 shots better...87 at Bulls Bay. I played terribly at Kiawah...my evil twin "wrong way Jay" must have gtten loose out of the trunk of my car that day...Reviews soon. The pic is the view of 18 from the clubhouse. Like Crystal Downs, Alistair Mackenzie's masterpiece in Michgan, you can see many holes and the huge body of water in the far background.

What a place.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great site; I've been checking it for awhile.
As you've stated many times here and Golf Club Atlas, I know you're a huge Strantz fan.
I've only played True Blue and Caledonia but had followed Strantz's work for years because of his maverick reputation.
Two questions if you don't mind. One, have you played Caledonia since the greens were redone? If so, your impressions? Secondly, how do you compare True Blue and Caledonia? Everything I've read seems there is greater love for Caledonia. My playing partner and I loved both but put True Blue among the finest courses we've played.
Lastly, what's the next Strantz course on your list?
Peter Sayegh

6:39 PM  
Blogger A WALK IN THE PARK said...

Thank you Peter. Great to have you here.

I have not yet played Caledonia since the greens were redone. I played in April of 2000.

I played True Blue in 2004...AFTER MIke came back and toned down some of the things (like the 3rd green).

I interviewed Mike right after my round and I mentioned to him that I was scratching my head over why there was so much outcry when it opened. I found it quite wide, and playable. Compared to Tobacco Road, Stonehouse and Royal New Kent, it was more laid back and more mainstream.

The two compliment each other beautifully as they are so different. Caledonia is the Scottish word for "Scotland" but should be the Scottish word for "gorgeous." While the bunkering is difficult, of the two I prefer Caledonia, but by a really slim margin.

Here is the beauty...you can join one and your grandfathered into the other...membership is a two-fer...

SO what are you waiting for!

Again, we are splitting hairs between the terrific and really great...do you want a porterhouse or a chateau briand. You would be proud to call either home.

I have played every Strantz course except his redesign at Silver Creek Valley. Now please understand your question is like giving a starving man a menu, but here goes my rank ordering:

1) Tie - Tobacco Road and Monterey Peninsula Country Club Shore Course

3) Bulls Bay

4 Royal New Kent

5 Caledonia

6:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alas, but where do you put Tot Hill Farm?

11:33 PM  
Blogger A WALK IN THE PARK said...

Tot Hill is a very interesting course and has a unique story to tell. After Mike did it, a huge flood came through and washed a couple holes out for a few weeks.

SO the members "pulled a Strantz" and thought outside the box to try to find a solution. They Temporarily rerouted two holes. You might recall that 10 and 12 are close to each other. They played one of those two holes twice, but one time from a different angle. They then moved up the 17th tee and played one superlong hole in to the clubhouse as a par 7.

Brilliant. What a great example to set for the rest of the golf world...creative and functional. Big props to the locals for making high octane lemonade out of lemons. If the rest of the golf world were as creative, can you imagine how much more variety there would be in GC design.

God loves wonderous variety.

Now, I drove 11 hours straight from NYC to Tot Hill with no sleep and I probly had little the night before too. (Entertainment law work totally scud attacks your sleep! BUt I wouldn't trade it for a supermodel...well, maybe for Gisele...or Monica Ekeland...or Paulina...OK bad example;);)). Anyhoo, I hit balls for half an hour before I had to go play with one of the course marshalls. I was so exhausted, I just had no swing. PLus, while my playing partner was super nice, he played a much longer game than I and was a bit of a chatty Kathy...usually I am too...that's not usually a problem. But with the confluence of no sleep, never playing the course that winds all over the place and being directed to places I could not reach with my game...well lets just say I couldn'thit the back end of a muke with a yardstick.

In short, I gave it good scores, but I need to see it again...it's been two years.

At $50 though, what are you waiting for. Also, again, the "lowest ranked" strantz course trumps (no...not "Trumps:) most really good Rees courses hands down and eats RTJ courses for lunch.

Interesting factoid #8459. The house behind 13 was going to be Mike's home, but then came Bulls Bay!

12:50 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home