I had booked a mid-morning tee time as a solo golfer, and wondered whether, even in late March, the powers that be might want to put me in with another group. But such thoughts were banished when, on arrival at Enniscrone, I found that mine was the only car in the car park. What followed can only be described as millionaire's golf, the sun shone throughout and I was virtually the only person on the course.
And what a course. Majestic is the word for this place, as one winds one's way through towering dunes, negotiating narrow fairways (it's not always wise to default to driver, here) and attempting to carry deep gullies protecting classic amphitheatre greens.
The tone was set at the first tee, as I tried to work out whether I'd run out of room if I took driver to the dogleg. That was the first of many judgements (and misjudgements) about clubbing. After a half-dozen holes I'd come up short so often I had to ask a passing greenkeeper whether the distance markers were measuring yards or metres. The only consolation was that most of the way round, short looked a lot less damaging than long.
I thought the first four holes were suberb. Five to 11 are merely good to very good. But from 12 to the finish is simply magnificent, with 12 and 15 being my personal highlights. A terrific golf course, in truly dramatic links terrain. Play it.
Date: March 20, 2018