Pine Needles- Southern Pines
The 77- year-old Donald Ross classic was renovated and restored in 2004 by architect John Fought. Its greens, tees and fairways will be in pristine condition after one more growing season. The U.S. Women's Open returns in 2007 following successful runs in 1996 and 2001.
The restoration work preserves some original features of the course. The 14th and 15th holes were returned to their original configurations-the former as a par-four and the latter as a par-five. Working from aerial photography, Fought restored green dimensions after decades of mowing patterns altered the shapes. Abandoned bunkers were replaced.
And there is some new. The greens are now planted with Penn A-1 bentgrass, one of the smoothest, hardiest green mixes avialable. Tees have been added on 12 holes to stretch the length over 7,000 yards and make holes play more like they were designed.
"From the back tees, I think we have more more of a test-a test that hopefully Donald Ross would approve of if he were around today," says Pine Needles President Kelly Miller.
Location: Southern Pines, NC
Green Fee Range: $$$
$ = under $50; $$ = $50 to $100; $$$ = $100 to $250; $$$$ = over $250