Today we played the Prairie Club Pines Course, designed by Graham Marsh. The Pines Course offers some similarities to the Dunes Course, but also provides a different experience and its own unique set of challenges. Here are some of the memorable things about the Pines Course that we enjoyed:
- – The Pines Course begins out in the open space like the Dunes Course, but then halfway through the front nine moves closer to the Snake River Canyon, where pines trees and other vegetation creep into play.
– Most of the back nine is cut out of the trees, requiring more accuracy along with the beautiful views.
– The 16th, 17th and 18th holes border the Snake River Canyon directly, and provide stunning visuals on the way in.
– Close proximity of greens to tee boxes. In some cases the back edges of the greens flow right into the subsequent tee boxes, creating a very Scottish, old school type of feel.
– The Pines Canteen halfway house, just like the Dunes Saloon, offers a chance for food and refreshments and a break during the round. The Pines Canteen is set between holes 5 and 6 and again as you come through between holes 15 and 16.
– The greens at the Pines Course are 9,000 square feet on average, which are about 3,000 feet smaller in size than the Dunes Course (9,000 square feet is still very large), but offer its own set of extreme challenges. Many of the greens have severe undulation, and on several of the greens it seems that it is a real challenge to even find a flat spot. They definitely place a premium on properly placing your approach set in relation to the hole to provide the best opportunity to make a putt.
– Both the Pines Course and the Dunes Course are par 73s with 5 par 5s, something uncommon but a fun deviation from the standard 72.
These are just a few of the things that make the Pines Course great. Both the Pines Course and Dunes Course provide their own unique set of challenges, and are enjoyable tests of golf.
USGolfTV Media Drive Team