They may not be the absolute toughest holes on the Grand Strand golf scene. But for whatever reason, and no matter how well we might be playing, these three seem to give us fits each and every time.
Kyle Oland: Indian Wells No. 2 (Par 4, 388 yards)
“When you think of the hardest holes in Myrtle Beach, No. 2 at Indian Wells might not be the first one that comes to mind. Heck, it’s probably not in your top 10 or 20. But let me tell you this: I hate this hole!
“Why? It’s not because it’s very long (it’s actually a pretty short par 4). It’s because the tee shot is a devil of a shot. First, the fairway is not overly wide, maybe 30-40 yards. Second, you have water down the left and woods along the right. If you don’t get off a good tee shot, you’re either taking a swim or searching among the sticks. And third, if they put you off on No. 1, it’s your second tee shot of the day, and at that point, you might not have hit your groove yet.
“So, be wary of No. 2 the next time you head to Indian Wells. If you are like me, I’m playing an iron and just hoping for the best next time I end up at this track.”
David Williams: Arrowhead Country Club, Cypress No. 2 (Par 5, 571 yards)
“A par five as one of the hardest holes in Myrtle Beach?? The second hole on the Cypress nine at Arrowhead Country Club isn’t your typical par five.
“Playing 571 yards from the back tees, this hole is an absolute monster. Most people, including myself, have probably played this hole from the white tees. The length of this par five isn’t the only thing that makes it tough. Water runs down the entire left side of this fairway and cuts in front of the green.
“Even if you hit a tee shot over 300 yards, you will be left with almost 230 yards over water. A ball that hits just short of the green will more than likely end up in the water. If you feel comfortable carrying a long iron 225 yards over water, then go for it. I’m not that good, so my play is to lay up to a comfortable yardage (85-110 yards) and wedge them to death.
“Next time you play Arrowhead, make sure you think about your second shot on this hole before you pull the trigger.”
Jim Maggio: Willbrook Plantation No. 1 (Par 4, 428 yards)
“When none other than Lee Trevino calls it one of the toughest opening holes on a golf course he’s ever played, I’ll simply nod my head, point in his direction and add, ‘Yeah. What he said.’
“Off the tee, water up the left side and trees encroaching from the right on this dogleg right make a well-struck cut shot your best shot to reach the ideal landing area just beyond the bend. That’s assuming you’re a right-handed player, of course. For a high-handicap lefty (like yours truly) who can’t hit a draw to save his life, it’s an entirely different story altogether.
“If you escape this hole without blowing up your scorecard, the ensuing 17 holes actually set up quite well for putting up a good score. So if you start your day here with a par but are disappointed it wasn’t birdie, quit whining – be thankful, move on to No. 2, and enjoy the rest of your round on a beautiful Lowcountry design.”