The Norman Course is Barefoot’s Understated Star

Barefoot Resort is home to courses designed by Tom Fazio, Davis Love III, Greg Norman and Pete Dye, and the property is widely regarded as one of the area’s best.

While any ranking of the quartet is by nature subjective, the layouts designed by Dye, Love and Fazio have been ranked among America’s 100 Greatest Public Courses by Golf Digest, establishing a pecking order for how the course’s are perceived.

It’s difficult to claim a layout with the Norman Course’s profile is underrated, but we’re here to make the case. Here are five things you need to know about the the Shark’s work at Barefoot:

— You will have a chance to score. The layout is open off the tee and the greens are accessible, meaning mid to high handicappers have some margin for error, something we all appreciate. The opening holes give players an opportunity to get off to a good start before the challenge stiffens on the back nine, so take advantage of your chances.

— The Norman Course is one of six along the Grand Strand that plays along the Intracoastal Waterway, its offerings highlighted by the par-3 10th hole. The hole plays from an elevated tee box and is one of the most dramatic tee shots along the Grand Strand. The waterway buffets the right side of the green and a waste area is in play off the tee, enhancing the challenge. In total, four holes play along the Waterway, including the 14th and 17th where it runs from tee to green, providing the course with some of Myrtle Beach’s most dramatic views.

— Opportunities to score are abundant, but that’s not the case at No. 12, the Norman Course’s hardest hole. The 419-yard par 4 (black tees, the most commonly played) is long and with water on the left, daunting from tee to green. Make par or even bogey and happily move along to the 13th tee.

— As for where you will rank the Norman Course, let me recommend the Barefoot Experience package, a three-night, four-round deal that allows you to play the Norman, Love, Fazio and Dye courses. The package starts at $408 and includes range balls, daily breakfast and preferred replay rates.

— After playing the Norman Course, make sure you stop by Putters Pub, Barefoot’s onsite bar. Putters overlooks the driving range, the food is good, and prices are outstanding. Because it’s located onsite, many people don’t know about Putters, but your group would do well to check it out.