Whispering Pines Golf Club is located some 90 miles to the north of Houston and the course opened for play in 2000.
Since opening, Whispering Pines has regularly been rated the No.1 course in the Dallas area by the local press and its pristine conditioning is a credit to the club’s passionate staff, helped also by being closed for play for fifty percent of the year. With a mere 160 members playing Whispering Pines in spring, early summer and autumn, the course hardly gets overplayed.
The 7,480-yard Whispering Pines course is set within a 400-acre property bordered by lakes and meandering creeks. It was a Nicklaus design project led by Chet Williams and he used the natural lie of the land to great effect, especially the last six holes which play alongside Caney Creek and Lake Livingston.
Home to the Spirit International Amateur Golf Championship, Whispering Pines is rapidly gaining a reputation for turning amateur golfers into professionals. In its short history, the championship has hosted more than 300 amateur golfers, of which 54 went on to play professionally for the PGA, LPGA and Men’s and Ladies European Tour.
It’s hard to understand how the club make ends meet as half the membership fees are benevolently donated to charity.
What an amazing track, thanks so much to Mr. Robertson for allowing myself SFC Zachary B Conklin, and CPT Jared Kuth from FT Polk La to enjoy a day playing the 9 hole executive course, and the amazing Championship course as well. No question why this course is ranked so high in the top 100.
You'll experience rolling terrain, a routing in every possible direction, commanding pine trees lining the fairways and a finish which would blow your imagination. Even if you had never seen a golf course before, you would find yourself appreciating what you were looking at. The 15th is a long par 3 to an island green, with a bunker running the entire way around the green. It would rival any par 3 Harry Colt ever designed in Surrey, UK. The 15th at Whispering Pines is like a longer version of the 10th at Pine Valley, just with water all around it. The 16th is an even longer par 3 through a tunnel of trees with a huge pond in front of the green. It's relentless! It's a good thing this Irishman had a 1 iron in his bag, because this hole is as demanding as Cypress 16.
Golfers don't enjoy having the stare down their ball until it comes to rest, but you'll find you do that alot at this venue. The 17th is a par 5 with a beautiful river running up the left-hand side, and the hole progressively moves closer to the river as you approach the green. You actually lose your breath just trying to focus on keeping the ball in play while enjoying the surroundings. The 18th will put manners on any professional golfer. You must carry 240 yards to the fairway from the tips, then after hitting your Sunday best, you're left with 200 yards into a plateau green well protected with bunkers & a pond, and to add to the excitement, it's as if Donald Ross adding the false front just for fun. It's an architectural masterpiece which is hidden away from the world. If there's one phrase in golf which I hate hearing, it's "this place has the best finishing holes in golf". Well if more people played Whispering Pines, then this phrase would be removed from golfing vocabulary, because the debate would be over.
I can't count the number of times I whispered "wow" to myself while standing on a tee box. This is the most under-rated golf course in America and deserves so much credit not only for the layout, but the charity work that the club promotes. As with most American clubs, the hospitality, the clubhouse and the service was 5 star. You'll even find music being played on the driving range, which once you get used to it, it actually makes you smile with the novelty.
Texas isn't known for many top rated golf courses outside of Colonial and the relatively new Dallas National, but Whispering Pines is in a class of it's own. I hope you can discover the secret amongst the pines.