Brasstown Valley Resort and Spa exists just a few miles south of the North Carolina border, serving as an escape for both Georgians and Tar Heels to the Blue Ridge Mountains in north Georgia. Those who wish to stress out at least a little bit during their stay can consider Dennis Griffiths’s 7,000-plus golf course, which takes advantage of both the rolling terrain and a significant number of streams and marshland areas in challenging players.
And in the rare instances where Mother Nature didn’t do enough for Griffiths’s liking, the architect adds a number of significant sand hazards; huge bunkers are a signature for the course.
Consider the par five at No. 11, which measures at just 500 yards from the back tees. Players considering going for it in two will need to consider not one but two enormous sets of cross bunkers...one immediately in front of the green, and one 50 yards out. It seems odd to feature a strip of fairway between the two hazards, as few sane people would lay up between them. But, perhaps those who get stuck in the first wave of defense are grateful to have somewhere to escape, prior to hopefully clearing the second set.
Brasstown Valley is a resort course located in the Appalachian foothills. Not a lot of options on tees, the tips are over 7k yards, teals around 6500 and whites less then 6k yards. The first hole isn’t that difficult, but one must first carry a ravine to be in play, A slight dogleg left, favor the right side and take an extra club on your approach. The 2nd hole is tough, a long par four that has 5 fairway bunkers right and OB left. The short par 4 3rd is a birdie oppty. There is a water hazard all the way down the right with 2 fairway bunkers on the left. Smart play is to layup. There is also a BAB front right of the very small green. The par 5 4th is the number one handicap hole, which makes no sense to me. It is a definite 3 shotter, but… Favor the left side off the tee and on your second shot as there is a BAB fairway bunker right. This green is protected by 2 large bunkers left and front. As tempting as it may be to take an extra club to take them out of play, long is dead. The first par 3 is relatively short, but all carry over a ravine. The 6th is a good golf hole. Long par 4 slight dogleg left with a water carry and water down the leftside. The fairway does widen in the landing zone. The green tilts hard right to left so aim right of the stick. The 7th is another long par 4. A large fairway bunker on the right with a few pot bunkers left. Favor the left side off the tee. The redan green is guarded by a bunker left. The 8th is another birdie oppty. A dogleg right, it is the shortest par 4, however, there is water right. As well as a large fairway bunker left. Laying up, may be the wise choice. Greenside has a BAB bunker front right and a pot bunker front left. The front ends with a long par 5. Bunkers right so favor the left side on both your tee shot and 2nd shot. Another well guarded green with bunker left and front.
The back opens with a long par 3 over a ravine. Long is better. I do not know how this hole is rated the easiest. The 11th is a reachable par 5. Left is better off the tee to avoid the fairway bunkers right. To get home in two one must have the intestinal fortitude to carry 5 bunkers. Not for the faint of heart.
The 12th is a birdie oppty, but one must avoid the bunkers left and right that hourglass the fairway. Another BAB guards the front of this elevated green. The par 4 13th is another birdie oppty, just don’t hit it right into the water hazard. The 14th is the shortest of the par 3s. Pay no attention to the water hazard right and focus on the right yardage. I cannot understand how a 150 yard par 3 is the 14th toughest hole and a 211 par 3 is the easiest? The 15th is a reachable par 5 and slings to the right with a water hazard all the way down the right side. The closer your tee shot is the hazard the shorter your second shot, of course the risk is higher as well. Two tough finishing holes. The 17th is a 220 yard par 3. Unless, you are really good, if the pin is right go for the middle of the green. The BAB front right had me for lunch. The 18th is a long par 4, off the tee left is best. For your approach take an extra club and favor the right side.
Good not great.