One of the best value courses in the Sand Hills, Southern Pines Golf Club is a classic, old-fashioned, 6,300-yard Donald Ross layout that should not be overlooked by golfers visiting the Pinehurst area.
There is very little I can add to the thorough reviews below that would contribute value to the description of Southern Pines Golf Club. During the summer that I lived in the Sandhills as a USGA intern, I was fortunate to have access to many prestigious courses, yet I constantly found myself returning to Southern Pines to practice and squeeze in that rare ‘quick afternoon 9’.
There are any number of compelling reasons to experience SPGC. If you are visiting the Sandhills, the land is probably better for golf than virtually any of the other more ‘notable’ courses, and the sylvan setting lacking houses is refreshing. The history of the property is deep, and stories you can learn about holes gained/lost are truly mesmerizing. If you are a Ross lover, you can witness some of the best routing of the world’s best router. As if this were all not enough, some very notable names in the world golf architecture community call SPGC home, a very strong mark of praise.
For the purist, SPGC is a must stop the next time you find yourself in North Carolina!
I played this course on a recent trip with my wife to the Pinehurst area. This is a classic Ross design set in some gentle rolling hills just outside the town of Southern Pines. This is a great routing that uses the slope of the land almost to perfection. There is nary a flat hole on the course but none of the slopes are contrived or excessive. The greens are pretty standard Ross designs but none of the slopes or run offs are very severe. I would give the course itself a solid 5 ball rating. Unfortunately the course upkeep and conditioning leave much to be desired. Upon entering the grounds the first site you see is the dilapidated Elks Club, and unfortunately the course conditions match the run down status of the building. The greens were decent, but otherwise conditioning was poor throughout. With some TLC this could be a fantastic course, but it’s current state it leaves much to be desired. Several buyers are interested in the property and the right owner could do some magic here and restore this great course to it’s rightful glory.
Read my full story: The Sandhills – high-class designs outside Pinehurst
Southern Pines is the YMCA of the sand hills of the greater Pinehurst resort area. Of course the locals will say it’s actually in Southern Pines but I’m going to refer to everything in the area as Pinehurst to make it easy.
This review is super biased as I was playing with a local and member of this lovely course who is completely in love with it and believes it’s the perfect course to sneak off and play 9 holes every evening. Honestly though, it’s hard to argue with that.
First of all, it’s totally empty in the afternoons; you can walk fast and play fast. It’s a beautiful property with some serious elevation changes and giant tree-lined fairways. The conditioning is that of your typical YMCA, which is slightly under-loved, and run down. If you can get past that what you find is wonderful architectural bones and great holes with interesting greens and no two holes alike. If this beauty ever gets the love and restoration that it deserves you will see it jump to the top echelon of courses in the Pinehurst area. My host would no doubt argue it’s already there. Maybe he’s right. Perhaps the best part of the current set up is that a round might cost you 30-50 USD making it by a mile the best value in the greater Pinehurst area without the 5-hour round.
I’m not sure he would be too happy with me letting the secret out but heed my warning. If it’s a perfectly manicured fairway you want then you need not show up here or you will be annoyed at me for sending you and you’d better go and pay 350 USD to play at Pinehurst Resort.
This is simply an excellent course that will be loved by the purist. One day it will be bought, loved a little and regain all its glory, then the days of the 30-50 USD green fees will be a long lost memory.
Until then, add this to your list of must visits in the area.