Lookout Mountain didn’t need much help generating golf course credibility; a Seth Raynor design at your peak will do that. Although the mountain’s title club may be among the most acclaimed routes in the state, it seems that Rees Jones and Bill Bergin’s McLemore Club Highlands Course may offer the more impressive views.
Discussion of the course begin, understandably, with its jaw-dropping No. 18 hole. Many courses will challenge players with lakes that run along the entire length of the final hole; Jones and Bergin raised the stakes by providing a different sort of hazard during this 440-yarder: Balls that go left will be in for a long fall, down the sheer side of the mountain. And the distracting views the hole provides may result in many more shots heading off target than would be expected otherwise.
The club openly acknowledges that adapting a golf course to such a turbulent piece of property is challenging, and has taken a “work-in-progress” approach, planning quick renovations to adapt the terrain into a more playable route in the course’s opening years.