Golf resort

Kiawah Island Golf Resort: The Ocean Course | Course


“The Ocean Course offers many different shooting options throughout the course. While many holes are set up well for the driver off the tee, there are often alignment issues with risk and reward angles (holes 2, 7, 13 to name a few). But where the course excels is in the approach and short game options. Whether the iron should come high and pin or roll, how much loft to put under the chips – these are the key decisions to be made on the 18 holes. The course is incredibly difficult, almost to the fault. From the longest tees (available for daily play) at 7300 yards, it would be difficult for even the best casual golfer to reach the greens in good standing and make pars. Combine the length and challenging approaches with brutal wind conditions and it’s a bear of a course. Doglegs are divided roughly 4-4 with a par 5 in each category. Bunkers line the far side and closed side pretty much evenly (and some of these bunkers are quite intimidating – see challenge/aesthetics). The par 4 holes range from almost accessible (3, 6 13) to long (4, 9). The par 5s also have good variety, with an accessible 7 at the mammoth 16. However, the par 3s are all around 200 yards (from the back tees) except for 14 which is longer. Elevation changes also vary the course from hole to hole, as well as many pin locations. The name says it all – with large stretches of course hugging the coast, it’s unlike anything else in golf. The way hole 14 hits from the highest point of the island towards the water is fantastic, plus the course does a great job of setting away water holes, highlighting trees, marshes and the like. One thing to note are the unique bunkers with raised lips, that’s really something. The fairways were firm and well rolled, but the greens were in dire condition. A marked, uneven and inconsistent roll was present both days I played the course. Searching for explanations, caddies and starters gave no reason to say this would be out of the ordinary. So while I assume the course has better conditioning most of the year, I feel justified in revising poorly due to the lack of clear explanations. The course gets high marks for character for several reasons: first, its uniqueness for high land near the ocean. Many beach/shore courses are flat and lack the undulations of the ocean course. That alone gives high marks here. Second, the proximity to the city of Charleston, the pedestrian nature of the course, adds to the score.”

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