June 27, 2011
Beaufort, South Carolina, is a city in the southeastern part of the state that is close to Port Royal Sound and surrounded by dozens of small rivers and streams. Thanks to many marshes and rivers, the golf courses in and near Beaufort are full of natural water hazards. The Beaufort area features private courses--like Secession and Dolphin Head--as well as public courses, such as Sanctuary.
Secession Golf Club
Secession Golf Club features an 18-hole, 7,000-yard par-72 course that challenges golfers in that 14 of the holes are located along the low-country marshes surrounding the course. Because Secession is in an open, windy area, golfers find that one round can differ quite a bit from the next. The course requires soft shots as well as long drives. Perhaps nowhere is this more evident than on the 10th hole, a 572-yard par 5. The hole requires a long drive and a solid second shot. For the player to have a chance at a birdie, the third shot requires a soft touch, as the 32-yard green slopes downward and to the left. There are also two bunkers to the right of the green and one on the left. Another challenging hole is the 17th, a 134-yard par 3. Hitting the ball anywhere but the middle of the green will most likely lead to a bogey. The 34-yard-long island green is an easy target to miss. The golf club also features a clubhouse that serves breakfast and lunch, as well as dinners to private groups. Secession Golf Club 142 Secession Drive Beaufort, SC 29907 843-522-4600www.secessiongolf.com.
Sanctuary Golf Club
Sanctuary Golf Club features an 18-hole, par-71, 6,600-yard course with tree-lined fairways and rolling greens. A number of bunkers as well as water hazards come into play on several of the holes. The front nine and the back nine offer two different experiences. Golfers who get through the narrow fairways on the front nine are rewarded with wider fairways on the back nine. The course's longest hole is the 15th, a 561-yard par 5, while the shortest is the fourth, a 164-yard par 3. This hole is just next to the second-shortest hole, the fifth, a 174-yard par 3. As of 2010, Beaufort Country residents pay $39.95 per round while nonresidents pay $59.95 per round. The golf club also includes a pro shop. Sanctuary Golf Club 8 Waveland Ave. Beaufort, SC 29907 843-524-0300 www.sanctuarygolfcatisland.com.
Dolphin Head Golf Club
The 18-hole, 6,600-yard, par-72 Dolphin Head Golf Club is just outside of Beaufort on Hilton Head Island. Golf legend Gary Player designed the course in 1974, making it a challenging yet playable course for golfers of varying levels of experience. In addition to the bunkers, water hazards and pine and oak trees located throughout, the course is challenging thanks to the strong wind gusts that blow across the back nine. The key to playing this course is to hit shots you feel confident you can execute. Attempting to carry doglegs and distant water hazards can lead to trouble, while staying on the fairways makes the course much more manageable. The golf club includes a pro shop and a restaurant, and also offers lessons. Dolphin Head Golf Club 56 High Bluff Road Hilton Head Island, SC 29926-1815 (843) 681-5550 www.dolphinheadgc.com.
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