It feels like you are golfing in the United Kingdom
The weather wasn’t the best, but we made it through our round at the Golf Club of Dublin last week.
It rained the first three holes and some more on the seventh and the course was wet, but it was an enjoyable round. I was told the course plays much different when it is dry as it is a true links course and the ball can run, which makes it shorter, but puts more trouble in play. Despite not playing the course at its peak, it was still a great play and in great condition overall. Due to the recent rains, the rough was some of the tallest and thickest rough I have played and a true challenge to those double digit handicap golfers. There are also many deep, hazardous bunkers. Many of the greens are rather large but with subtle breaks, while there are some multi-tiered greens as well.
There are many links courses around now, but the Golf Club of Dublin matches Mistwood of having the true feel of a course from England or Ireland unlike most other links courses from the course itself to the outside of the pro shop.
The rates of very manageable for being one of the top public courses in the area. Monday-Friday till 1 p.m. is $56.95, while Saturdays, Sundays and holidays are $66.95 till 1 p.m. The weekend and holiday rate matches the regular weekday rate from 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. and the cost is just 29.95 from 4-6 and 22.95 after 6 p.m.
The yardage from the back tees is 7,021with a 131 slope. From the original tees it plays 6,361 and from the white tees it plays 5,986. The forward tees play at 4,969. All yardages mentioned will be from the tees we played, the original tees.
No. 1: The first hole is a straight 374-yard par-4. There are some bunkers to each side of the fairway, but the biggest and deepest bunker is right in front of the green.
No. 2: A short par-3 at 149 yards, it is a good hole to get some momentum early in your round. There are some bunkers behind the green with water behind it, but overall it is a very playable par-3.
No. 3: The third hole is the first where placement is a real key. It is a 377-yard dogleg left with a deep pot bunker to the left where the dogleg is. If you can carry it, the hole is easy. If you keep out to the right, no big deal. But if you are in it, it is like a half stroke penalty because it will be very hard to get to the green. There is water behind the green that can come into play from a long approach shot, particularly on a dry day.
No. 4: At 370 yards, the fourth hole’s fairway bends left of the tee. A straight drive can go through the fairway and find a group of bunkers. There is water to the right of the green and it is important to find the correct level of the green as there are multiple tiers and the depth is 58 yards.
No. 5: The fifth hole is a very reachable par-5 at 486 yards that plays straight. Even with the wet conditions it was reachable. There is water in front of the fairway and to the right of the fairway. There also is a bunker in the fairway around 100 yards out that can catch a mismanaged layup. A couple of bunkers to the left of the smallest green on the course make it more difficult.
No. 6: Rare back-to-back par-5s come up and this one is the easiest ranked hole on the front nine at 502 yards. It doesn’t have to play that long if you can cut the dogleg right. However, there is water, a bunker and some big trees guarding the dogleg. There is plenty of room to the left.More water comes into play right and behind the green and there is another fairway bunker around 100 yards out.
No. 7: This hole’s difficulty is dependent on which tees you play. From the back it plays much more difficult at 413 yards than from the original tees, which plays at 310. You do have to get the ball up in the air off the tee as there is water in front of the fair, as well as to the left. There is a dogleg left, which makes the hole reachable from the tee if you can cut off the dogleg. However, water and bunkers left can make it a big risk.
No. 8: At 168 yards, the eighth hole has a wide green with a couple of bunkers guarding it and water behind the hole. Making the green does not guarantee a par.
No. 9: The hardest hole on the course is the 400 yard ninth hole. It doesn’t appear that difficult from the tee except for the initial water you have to carry, but it is tighter than you think and thick rough and trees can add to the challenge. There also is some water off the tee and to the left of the green.
No. 10: The back nine begins with a 527-yard par-5. The fairway is tight off the tee with trees to each side of the fairway in the landing zone. Water comes into play to the left and behind the green.
No. 11: The hardest hole on the back nine plays 440 yards and is a dogleg left. A great tee shot is required or it is a three-shot hole. A bunker comes into play at the dogleg on the left and there is another in the front left of the green. There is water behind the hole that can come into play on a dry day when you bail out right to the chipping area.
No. 12: At 312 yards, the 12th hole is the easiest ranked hole and is another risk/reward. There is potential to drive the green on a dry day, but there is water down the left side of the fairway that can come into play. There is also a bunker right of the fairway that can punish a tee shot going for the green. Multiple bunkers can also be found around the green.
No. 13: The final par-5 plays 521 yards and is another dogleg left with water all down the left side. There is a single bunker right of the fairway that can come into play off the tee as well. The green is tucked behind the water, which makes going for the green in two a major risk.
No. 14: Water goes along the right side of this 137-yard par-3 and juts out to the middle of the green. There isn’t much trouble left though, which makes this a relatively easy hole.
No. 15: A 377 yard par-4 has water in front of the fairway and down the right hand side of the hole and goes all the way behind the hole. It is fairly tight around the green.
No. 16: A 371-yard par-4, the 16th hole has a huge fairway, but the difficulty is a pair of huge pot bunkers in the middle of the fairway. The approach shot is also blind. If you can avoid the bunker, the only other trouble is a couple of bunkers around the green.
No. 17: The longest par-3 is the last at 191 yards. The main trouble is the water well beyond the green. The green is pretty large, making another three-putt a definite possibility.
No. 18: The Golf Club of Dublin finishes with a unique 351-yard hole. The fairway funnels right towards water that extends the length of the hole.There also is trouble left of the fairway and small bunkers in the fairway, adding to the challenge of the hole.
Top 5 favorite holes:
5. No. 13: There are plenty of holes around that have a similar style with the dogleg left covered by water. But the way the green is tucked behind the water and the feel of the green puts this hole on the list.
4. No. 12: I always favor short par-4s and this is a solid one. There isn’t a lot of risk though which keeps it from being a premier hole.
3. No. 18: The slope of the hole towards the water and the bunkers littered around the fairway make this hole a fun but difficult challenge.
2. No. 6: A great risk/reward par-5. If you hit it into trouble you are kicking yourself for not making the safe play out left. If the shortcut works out, you are loving the second shot that can get you on the green, if you can carry the water.
- No. 7: The ultimate risk/reward hole. I of all people actually laid up on the hole (basically because I can slice a shot right, the hole curves left and there are houses right). Even if you clear the water off the tee going for the green, a bunker in front of the green can take away the advantage if you find it
No. 11. I managed to par the hole, but only because of a great drive and a solid second shot If it was dry, I would have found the water. It is such a long hole and you have to be accurate gives it a slight edge over the much higher but straighter ninth hole.
No. 2: It is a pretty straight forward par-3 that is shorter than average and there isn’t much trouble.
Aiming for the center of the green probably won’t do you well unless the hole is there because the greens are so big, it will be hard to two-putt to a hole tucked away in a corner of the green. On a dry day you might not want to hit driver very often as the roll can get you into some added trouble.