River Oaks golf course, located in the heart of Myrtle Beach, celebrated its grand re-opening last month and the facility bears little resemblance to the layout golfers played in recent years. The course is much more open, new bunkers have been installed and, in some places, there is additional movement in the fairways.
With the changes in mind, we asked Signature Golf Group’s Scott Taylor, who is overseeing the course, to tell us the best hole on each of River Oaks’ three nines – the Fox, Otter and Bear.
Here are the 27-hole facility’s three best holes, according to Taylor:
Fox Course, No. 3, 189-yard, par 3: One of two spots at River Oaks that overlooks the Intracoastal Waterway, No. 3 at Fox is a scenic par 3 that challenges players to avoid sand (both waste and traditional green-side bunkers) and find the proper side of the green.
“It’s a great little par 3,” Taylor says. “The green has a pretty severe slope from front to back, which makes it fun to play. You have to check where the pin is and play accordingly.”
Given the hole’s proximity to the Intracoastal, it’s also important to keep an eye on the wind.
Otter, No. 4, 521-yard, par 5: Water, sand and an undulating green combine to make No. 4 the Otter’s best hole. Water runs along the right side of a hole that has a little dogleg right.
Long hitters will have the opportunity to go for the green in two, but it’s a risk-reward shot. The water will collect shots that slice, and the green is surrounded by five bunkers. To further complicate matters, the green has a ridge that runs through the middle.
“The green plays a huge role in the outcome of your score because of the slope,” according to Taylor. “Just hitting the green doesn’t guarantee a good score.”
Bear, No. 9, 547-yard, par 5: The longest and arguably most difficult hole at River Oaks, No. 9 on the Bear Course, a dogleg right, has plenty of water. The approach shot is one of River Oaks’ most scenic as players that want to challenge the green in two are required to hit over a large lake into a green that is flanked by bunkers on both sides.
Show this hole the respect it deserves and play it like a three-shot par 5. If you get greedy, this Bear can certainly extract its pound of flesh.
What is your favorite hole at River Oaks Golf Plantation?