PINE VALLEY GOLF CLUB
AMERICA'S TOP 50 COURSES PINE VALLEY GOLF CLUB
By Ken Liebeskind
While Bethpage Black is the most popular public golf course in the U.S., Pine Valley Golf Club in Camden County, NJ has been ranked the best golf course period. "To my way of thinking, Pine Valley possesses more classic holes than any other course in the world," Robert Trent Jones said.
Pine Valley Golf Club is praised for the consistent level of challenge and conditioning on each hole, requiring thoughtful placement of the ball from tee to green, with correct placement on approach shots due to significant swales and undulations.
Pine Valley Golf Club prides itself in being one of the toughest challenges in all of golf, with a slope of 155 from the championship tees. One of its trademarks is the par 3 5th hole, which requires a 220 yard slightly uphill drive over a lake to a small, sloped green. Then there's Hell's half acre, the barren wasteland on the par 5 7th hole that is probably the largest non sea-side bunker in the world.
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There's another famous extremely deep trap on the par 3 10th hole and the famous par 4 18th, which incorporates many different elements of the course into a spectacular finishing hole.
Pine Valley Golf Club plays to a par 70, 6532 yards from the regulation tees and 7,009 from the championship tees. It's not extremely long, but the scrub pines and the natural sand combine to make the layout extremely difficult.
One golfer said Pine Valley Golf Club is "by far the best course I have ever played. One of the most difficult and the most fair courses every built. A true gem." Another said it has "the highest concentration of great golf features on a single course in the world."
The course demands precision, so if you get a chance to play you'd best be equipped with the most accurate clubs. I recently played Pine Valley Golf Club with the Condor Weighted Irons from www.scientificgolfclubs.com. They provide the distance of drivers or 3 woods with the accuracy of irons and feature two four gram tungsten weights that I was able to customize to my swing. On the tee, I left both weights in to increase distance. On the fairway, I took the heel weight out to avoid hooks and to hit draw shots. You can also take the toe weight out to reduce slices. I have two Condor Weighted Irons, with 12.5 and 17 degree lofts that I use for long and medium distance shots. They provided the distance and accuracy I needed to shoot a respectable score at the Pine Valley Golf Club.