Wednesday, March 28, 2018

The Best Course You've Never Heard of, Part 2

Next week people will flock to the Augusta area for The Masters.  The best golf option for people looking to tee it up during The Masters is always Palmetto Golf Club, the very private Mackenzie course that opens its doors to the public for one week a year.  With that being said, I would argue the second best option to play that week or really any week of the year is a course that is a mere two miles from Palmetto, Aiken Golf Club.

One unfortunate trend of the last 30 or so years is the dismissal of shorter courses as unworthy.  Just because a course is under 6000 yards doesn’t mean it’s not worth your time to play.  Aiken is the ultimate example of this.  I would put Aiken right up there with Cape Arundel and Merion (West) as the best under 6000 yard golf courses in the country.
A trip to play Aiken Golf Club is a must because its good for your soul.  From the moment you arrive you feel something special in the air.  You walk into the quaint old style locker room and feel the history of the course  You take a fun tour around the putting course and you are immediately excited to tee it up.

The fantastic double green at #1 and #17 sets the tone for what is in store for you on this wonderful journey
1st and 17th greens
The brilliant short par 5 second hole is a dogleg right that requires a tee shot down the far left side of the fairway if you want a shot at reaching the green in two.  Don't let the yardage fool you.  This 446 yard par 5 is not the easy birdie that you think it is.  It makes you earn it.
2nd Hole
The brilliant routing navigates you up and down some gentle slopes.  One of the most noticeable ups is on the short par 3 fourth hole.  Only 128 yards from the middle tees, this hole has an outstanding green and emphasizes the fun that is playing at Aiken.
4th Hole
The shortish par 4 sixth hole is relatively flat and yet is one of the strongest par 4's on the course.
6th Hole
The short par 4 eighth hole features one of the most well bunkered greens on the course.  The uphill par 3 ninth is in the background.
8th Hole with par 3 9th in the background
After two outstanding short par 4's at 14 & 15, we arrive at the downhill par 3 16th hole.
16th Hole
We return to the double green with the uphill par 4 17th hole.
1st and 17th Greens, 17 on the right.
The 18th hole is a long par 3 that ends our journey around one of the most fun golf courses in the country.
18th hole with clubhouse in the background

If you ever find yourself in the Augusta area, please take the time to play Aiken Golf Club.  You will not be disappointed.

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