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Nicklaus golf courses (only if you like his work)

jack nicklaus architect

101 replies to this topic

#31 BUCKEYERBALL88

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 09:56 AM

View Postaz2au, on 03 November 2018 - 08:08 PM, said:

Desert Mountain Outlaw is by far the best Nicklaus course I’ve played. Many of the others roadking lists are somewhere in the “next tier”. I agree with Raynorfan1 pretty much 100%. The only thing I would add is that Nicklaus often gets too much credit for “nice” or money courses. I also think that’s why he gets a lot of the pushback you see. Lots of sizzle without substance.

Do they get dm outlaw firm & fast? That’s my issue with we ko pa saguaro. The design calls for links like shots but the grass is too soft


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#32 duffer987

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 09:59 AM

  • Diablo Grande - Legends (now closed)
  • Par 3 5th at Pebble Beach
I'm sure some of his more well regarded resort stuff is neat (+ MV/Sebonack obviously), but I've largely been exposed to his company's paint-by-numbers outlet mall stuff.

Edited by duffer987, 05 November 2018 - 10:56 AM.


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#33 DoubleorQuits

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 10:50 AM

Top 5

MVGC
May River
Shoal Creek
Sebonack
Great Waters

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#34 Matt J

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 10:58 AM

View Postduffer987, on 05 November 2018 - 09:59 AM, said:

  • Diablo Grande - Legends (now closed)
  • Par 3 5th at Pebble Beach
I'm sure some of his more well regarded resort stuff is neat (+ MV/Sebonack obviously), but I've largely been exposed to his company's paint-by-numbers outlet mall stuff.

I know this thread isn't about criticism, but I'm with Duf.  I can appreciate some of his work but have 0 respect for his design firm.  I remember reading an interview where he admits they were willing to mail it in if the budget was too small.  Seems greedy and unethical to me.

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#35 Argonne69

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 11:07 AM

I don't think I've disliked any of Jack's courses that I've played, but at the same time I've never been totally blow away. 'Love his greens for the most part. I find his fairway bunkers to be rather penal, with many making it difficult to reach the green in regulation due to high faces. I've played:

- Dismal River White
- The Bull
- PGA West (Nicklaus)
- Harbor Shores
- Hammock Beach (Ocean)
- Dove Mountain
- Harbour Town
- Old Corkscrew
- Coyote Springs
- Grand Bear
- Golf Club of Estrella
- Grand Geneva (Highlands)
- Bay Pointe (Nicklaus)
- Turtle Point
- Grand Cypress New
- Grand Cypress
- Reunion (Nicklaus)
- Bear's Best


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#36 ceejay81

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 11:12 AM

Someone mentioned it before, but Potomac Shores in Northern VA is really good.  They just switched over to Bermuda this summer.
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#37 az2au

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 11:24 AM

View PostBUCKEYERBALL88, on 05 November 2018 - 09:56 AM, said:

View Postaz2au, on 03 November 2018 - 08:08 PM, said:

Desert Mountain Outlaw is by far the best Nicklaus course I’ve played. Many of the others roadking lists are somewhere in the “next tier”. I agree with Raynorfan1 pretty much 100%. The only thing I would add is that Nicklaus often gets too much credit for “nice” or money courses. I also think that’s why he gets a lot of the pushback you see. Lots of sizzle without substance.

Do they get dm outlaw firm & fast? That’s my issue with we ko pa saguaro. The design calls for links like shots but the grass is too soft
Only when they don’t overseed. It looks more linksy than it plays most of the time but it is still very good.

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#38 me05501

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 12:04 PM

Years ago the state of TN made a deal with Nicklaus Design to create the Bear Trace courses in several state parks. They were clearly hoping to copy the success of the RTJ Golf Trail in Alabama. I suspect that the majority of the work was done by Jack's team. Maybe it was more important to have Jack's name on the courses than to have his hands on them.

We have a course here, the Bear Trace at Harrison Bay. It's a scenic and enjoyable course with quite a lot of variety among the holes. The fairways are wide, but it is often a big advantage to favor one side or the other. It's probably the best public course in the area. Play can be somewhat slow there. I assume that many are playing it for the first time.

I've also played the Bear Trace at Tim's Ford, which is similar in many ways. Rather remote, scenic, near the water but not often in view of it. It finishes on a short par three which is somewhat anticlimactic.

When those two courses opened they featured shaggy fringes planted around the greens that were designed to prevent or deter a rolling approach. The story I heard was that the local construction firms cautioned against this because the fine-bladed grass the Nicklaus people specified was very likely to burn up, but the Nicklaus people insisted. I don't know whether this was something they considered a signature feature, or maybe if they'd given in on the desire for wider fairways but felt the need to protect the greens, or what.

So the fringes went in, and as predicted, they died every summer. So you'd have green fairways and greens with these dead, shaggy brown fescue rings around them. For the first several seasons the supers did everything they could to survive those grasses. But players hated them, and eventually the decision was made to resod those areas with bermuda to match the fairways.

Finally, there's the Bear Trace at Cumberland Mountain, which is about 75 minutes from here near Crossville, TN. It's quite different from the other two, definitely more difficult, with more forced carries and places you just really don't want your ball to find. I'd like to go back there now that I can manage my game a bit better, but my recollection from several rounds years back is that it is on the wrong side of "challenging" and into penal. There are at least three other courses near there I'd prefer to play ahead of that one.

Edited by me05501, 05 November 2018 - 12:37 PM.


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#39 Roadking2003

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 02:01 PM

View Postaz2au, on 04 November 2018 - 10:37 PM, said:

I should have mentioned Monte Rei.  Awesome course and it doesn't seem like most other Nicklaus courses I've played (not a good or bad thing, just what I thought).

Yes, I played it in May this year.  Quite difficult and requires a lot of strategic thinking.  Most tee shots need to be played to the side of the fairway that enables a good approach.

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#40 Roadking2003

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 02:02 PM

View PostSMcGavin1, on 05 November 2018 - 09:49 AM, said:

Nicklaus courses are usually underwhelming to say the least, however, the newly renovated Ocean Course at Hammock Beach Resort is outstanding.

Examples?


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#41 Roadking2003

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 02:04 PM

View PostBUCKEYERBALL88, on 05 November 2018 - 09:56 AM, said:

View Postaz2au, on 03 November 2018 - 08:08 PM, said:

Desert Mountain Outlaw is by far the best Nicklaus course I've played. Many of the others roadking lists are somewhere in the "next tier". I agree with Raynorfan1 pretty much 100%. The only thing I would add is that Nicklaus often gets too much credit for "nice" or money courses. I also think that's why he gets a lot of the pushback you see. Lots of sizzle without substance.

Do they get dm outlaw firm & fast? That's my issue with we ko pa saguaro. The design calls for links like shots but the grass is too soft

All of the DM courses are firm and fast when I have played them.  They post the Stimp by the first tee and it's usually 11.5.

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#42 augustgolf

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 02:48 PM

View Postjmtbkr, on 03 November 2018 - 02:20 PM, said:

I've played these locally:

Champions course at PGA
Bear Lakes
Ibis CC
Loxahatchee Club

If you get the chance, play Mayacoo Lakes. Built surrounding Breakers West.
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#43 raynorfan1

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 02:53 PM

View PostRoadking2003, on 05 November 2018 - 02:02 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 05 November 2018 - 09:49 AM, said:

Nicklaus courses are usually underwhelming to say the least, however, the newly renovated Ocean Course at Hammock Beach Resort is outstanding.

Examples?

Both the Nicklaus designs in Massachusetts - at Pinehills and Ocean Edge - are pretty average. Better than the local muni's, but nothing that I'd go out of my way to play.

In fairness, in both cases I think the firm delivered exactly what the client asked for / wanted, so in some ways it's difficult to fault them for building the right things for their clients. They're just not very good golf courses.

Edited by raynorfan1, 05 November 2018 - 02:56 PM.


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#44 ceejay81

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 03:10 PM

Haven't been able to get on it yet, but Creighton Farms in VA is super nice from what I hear.
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#45 smashdn

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 03:59 PM

View Postme05501, on 05 November 2018 - 12:04 PM, said:

...state of TN...

Reminds me that there was a Nicklaus Design course just down the road from me in White House, TN.  It was a residential deal that was dreamed up during the latter half of the 1990's golf boom.  It went so far as to have some of the holes grassed and grown in.  I was working in Springfield, TN at the time the course was constructed and eventually the plan collapsed in the recession.  Intrigue got the better of me and I took a stroll on the property one afternoon.  What I found was a property with tons of containment mounding and almost bowling alley-esque fairways that were cut down into the hills and then the sides built and rolled up.  Those few holes I walked were very bizarre.  IIRC there was a tunnel cart path as well.

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#46 jwhite86

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 04:04 PM

I've only played The Bull... but it's my favorite course in my regular rotation.  I try to play it 7-10 times a year
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#47 exgolfpro

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Posted 05 November 2018 - 04:43 PM

I guess I've played 4.  Ranked in order are...

1) The Bull at Pinehurst Farms-in my top 10 off all the courses I've every played.
2) Winghaven CC-fun course.  Probably as difficult as The Bull.  Has a tunnel cart path as part of the course is across a road.
3) Dalhousie GC--good course, but a few forgettable holes.  Conditioning is usually great.
4) Stonewolf GC (Illinois)-Always been a weird course to me.  Has several really good memorable holes and about 10 forgettable ones.

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#48 SMcGavin1

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Posted 06 November 2018 - 04:14 PM

View PostRoadking2003, on 05 November 2018 - 02:02 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 05 November 2018 - 09:49 AM, said:

Nicklaus courses are usually underwhelming to say the least, however, the newly renovated Ocean Course at Hammock Beach Resort is outstanding.

Examples?

Muirfield Village - Too many trees, too much rough, too many forgettable

Glen Abbey - Boring, stale, not much thought went into it

Reunion Resort - Boring again, way too much development around the course

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#49 Roadking2003

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Posted 06 November 2018 - 05:30 PM

View PostSMcGavin1, on 06 November 2018 - 04:14 PM, said:

View PostRoadking2003, on 05 November 2018 - 02:02 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 05 November 2018 - 09:49 AM, said:

Nicklaus courses are usually underwhelming to say the least, however, the newly renovated Ocean Course at Hammock Beach Resort is outstanding.

Examples?

Muirfield Village - Too many trees, too much rough, too many forgettable

Glen Abbey - Boring, stale, not much thought went into it

Reunion Resort - Boring again, way too much development around the course

Muirfield Village is one of the most spectacular courses in the world.  But, everyone is entitled to their opinion.

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#50 raynorfan1

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Posted 06 November 2018 - 06:33 PM

View PostRoadking2003, on 06 November 2018 - 05:30 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 06 November 2018 - 04:14 PM, said:

View PostRoadking2003, on 05 November 2018 - 02:02 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 05 November 2018 - 09:49 AM, said:

Nicklaus courses are usually underwhelming to say the least, however, the newly renovated Ocean Course at Hammock Beach Resort is outstanding.

Examples?

Muirfield Village - Too many trees, too much rough, too many forgettable

Glen Abbey - Boring, stale, not much thought went into it

Reunion Resort - Boring again, way too much development around the course

Muirfield Village is one of the most spectacular courses in the world.  But, everyone is entitled to their opinion.

And yet it didn’t even make your original top ten!?!?


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#51 FairwayFred

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Posted 06 November 2018 - 08:25 PM

View Postraynorfan1, on 06 November 2018 - 06:33 PM, said:

View PostRoadking2003, on 06 November 2018 - 05:30 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 06 November 2018 - 04:14 PM, said:

View PostRoadking2003, on 05 November 2018 - 02:02 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 05 November 2018 - 09:49 AM, said:

Nicklaus courses are usually underwhelming to say the least, however, the newly renovated Ocean Course at Hammock Beach Resort is outstanding.

Examples?

Muirfield Village - Too many trees, too much rough, too many forgettable

Glen Abbey - Boring, stale, not much thought went into it

Reunion Resort - Boring again, way too much development around the course

Muirfield Village is one of the most spectacular courses in the world.  But, everyone is entitled to their opinion.

And yet it didn’t even make your original top ten!?!?

I don't believe RK has played Muirfield Village (based on his posts) though not playing a course has never stopped him from having a strong opinion on it.
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#52 raynorfan1

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Posted 06 November 2018 - 09:19 PM

View PostFairwayFred, on 06 November 2018 - 08:25 PM, said:

View Postraynorfan1, on 06 November 2018 - 06:33 PM, said:

View PostRoadking2003, on 06 November 2018 - 05:30 PM, said:

Muirfield Village is one of the most spectacular courses in the world.  But, everyone is entitled to their opinion.

And yet it didn't even make your original top ten!?!?

I don't believe RK has played Muirfield Village (based on his posts) though not playing a course has never stopped him from having a strong opinion on it.

So, everybody is actually entitled to somebody else's opinion as well...

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#53 duffer987

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Posted 06 November 2018 - 09:52 PM

I'm happy to believe MV could be a really enjoyable course, but I've never heard a parkland course running through a housing estate being called spectacular.

Not spectacular:
wrxspectacular.jpg

Spectacular:
wrxspectacular01.jpg

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#54 raynorfan1

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Posted 06 November 2018 - 09:56 PM

View Postduffer987, on 06 November 2018 - 09:52 PM, said:

I'm happy to believe MV could be a really enjoyable course, but I've never heard a parkland course running through a housing estate being called spectacular.

Not spectacular:
Attachment wrxspectacular.jpg

Spectacular:
Attachment wrxspectacular01.jpg

It's not a golf course without an adjacent caravan park!

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#55 duffer987

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Posted 06 November 2018 - 10:00 PM

View Postraynorfan1, on 06 November 2018 - 09:56 PM, said:

View Postduffer987, on 06 November 2018 - 09:52 PM, said:

I'm happy to believe MV could be a really enjoyable course, but I've never heard a parkland course running through a housing estate being called spectacular.

Not spectacular:
Attachment wrxspectacular.jpg

Spectacular:
Attachment wrxspectacular01.jpg

It's not a golf course without an adjacent caravan park!
LOL! Darn straight. No classic Irish links can consider itself a spectacular world top whatever course without a caravan park :)

With the exception of Portmarnock and The Island (due to it's proximity to the city) I don't think any of Ireland's top links are missing one.

Edited by duffer987, 06 November 2018 - 10:01 PM.


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#56 SMcGavin1

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Posted 07 November 2018 - 11:01 AM

View PostRoadking2003, on 06 November 2018 - 05:30 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 06 November 2018 - 04:14 PM, said:

View PostRoadking2003, on 05 November 2018 - 02:02 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 05 November 2018 - 09:49 AM, said:

Nicklaus courses are usually underwhelming to say the least, however, the newly renovated Ocean Course at Hammock Beach Resort is outstanding.

Examples?

Muirfield Village - Too many trees, too much rough, too many forgettable

Glen Abbey - Boring, stale, not much thought went into it

Reunion Resort - Boring again, way too much development around the course

Muirfield Village is one of the most spectacular courses in the world.  But, everyone is entitled to their opinion.

Not even close. It is overrated where it is. If not for Nicklaus's name and the Memorial being there, it wouldn't crack the top 100. 4, 6, 8 all boring. Not to even mention how hard of a walk it is. I will say that the conditioning is superb and I enjoyed the par 5's. Just not a course I would go out of my way to play again.

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#57 Roadking2003

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Posted 07 November 2018 - 06:13 PM

View Postraynorfan1, on 06 November 2018 - 06:33 PM, said:

View PostRoadking2003, on 06 November 2018 - 05:30 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 06 November 2018 - 04:14 PM, said:

View PostRoadking2003, on 05 November 2018 - 02:02 PM, said:

View PostSMcGavin1, on 05 November 2018 - 09:49 AM, said:

Nicklaus courses are usually underwhelming to say the least, however, the newly renovated Ocean Course at Hammock Beach Resort is outstanding.

Examples?

Muirfield Village - Too many trees, too much rough, too many forgettable

Glen Abbey - Boring, stale, not much thought went into it

Reunion Resort - Boring again, way too much development around the course

Muirfield Village is one of the most spectacular courses in the world.  But, everyone is entitled to their opinion.

And yet it didn't even make your original top ten!?!?

Because I haven't played it.  My top ten are courses I have played.

Muirfield looks spectacular on TV and most people rate it very high.  Golf Digest has it #15 in the USA.  You don't need to play it to appreciate it.

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#58 Roadking2003

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Posted 07 November 2018 - 06:18 PM

View PostFairwayFred, on 06 November 2018 - 08:25 PM, said:

I don't believe RK has played Muirfield Village (based on his posts) though not playing a course has never stopped him from having a strong opinion on it.

This is true.   I've never played Pine Valley either but have seen enough to agree it's a very special place.  

Sorry if you can't form an opinion of a course without playing it.  Most of us can.

I knew the Taj Mahal was spectacular before I went to see it.  

This isn't a strange concept.  Lots can be learned from pictures, videos and reading other people's observations.

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#59 TinkerGolfMan

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Posted 07 November 2018 - 06:22 PM

Only one i've played is Angeles National, but I would love to play more.
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#60 Roadking2003

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Posted 07 November 2018 - 06:25 PM

View Postduffer987, on 06 November 2018 - 09:52 PM, said:

I'm happy to believe MV could be a really enjoyable course, but I've never heard a parkland course running through a housing estate being called spectacular.

Like Pebble Beach?  

Spectacular is in the eye of the beholder.


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