Located less than an hour’s drive north of downtown Atlanta, the late 1990s layout at the semi-private Woodmont Golf & Country Club is the first design project undertaken by Robert Trent Jones Junior in the state of Georgia.
Woodmont Golf Club holds a special place in my heart. It was the first Robert Trent Jones, Jr course in the state of Georgia. The layout is unique with 5 par 3 and 5 pars. The front is significantly longer than the back. It is the anti-Nicklaus course with hazards on the right of 11 holes.
The first hole is a relatively straight forward par 5. There is a fairway bunker right in the landing area. However, big hitters can carry it and have an excellent chance at reaching the green in two. Be wary of the two greenside bunkers right. The 2nd is a mid-length relatively benign par 3. The green is protected by 3 bunkers, but heck, if I can make birdie, so can you. The 3rd hole is a relatively straight par four. The left fairway bunker really shouldn’t come into play but for shots right the creek comes into play. The 4th is long and has water right. I played safe, missed left and got the bogey I deserved. The par 4 5th looks more demanding than it is. The water should not come into play. For your approach take an extra club, this is one of the tougher greens on the course. The 6th and 7th are birdie oppties. The 6th is 130 yards, so what, par 3. The 7th has 2 fairway bunkers. If you are in the first one, you deserve it and if you are in the 2nd , congrats, that is a hell of a drive (or a really lousy approach shot) The long par 4 8th is deservedly the number one handicap hole. I coughed up another one here but was able to get it back on the pat 5 9th. The 9th is another hole that seemed to have bunkers in areas that would not effect most golfers. Even par at the turn, I had visions of grandeur.
The back starts off with another par 5. Downhill and a classic risk reward, but there is a creek and swamp that bisects the fairway about 200 yards out. The short par 3 11th is a flip wedge. Yes, you have to carry h2o, but at 111 yards, so what. Back to minus 1. The par 4 12th and par 3 13th are good birdie oppties. On 12, once again, fairway bunkers that have little or no impact. The 14th has a blind tee shot, favor the left side. A creek dissects the hole at a 45 degree angle in front of one of the narrowest greens on the course. Take your par and move on. The 15th is the most demanding par 3, anywhere from 180-200 yards over gunch. The hole drops off right and there is a hill left of the green. I overcooked my 5 wood and received a fortuitous carom to give myself a short birdie putt, that I promptly yanked. The par 5 16th is peculiar at best. The elevated tee provides a view of the hole and thus eliminates one of the potential excuses for mucking it up. A creek meanders down the right side and then arbitrarily crosses the fairway about 180 yards out and then pivots back to protect the green. Favor the left off the tee to ensure you are not blocked out. It is the number 2 handicap hole has a tough green and bogey was our best score. Back to even. The 17th is an interesting par 4. With water down the right, left is best. It is not a long hole, but most of the approach is carry. I overcooked my approach and had a 30+ footer. The Big Guy must have felt sorry for me as my putt trundled in for a birdie. Back to minus 1. It is sphincter puckering time, I have a chance to go red. Another omen from above, a short uphill par five. I steer my drive into the fairway, coax my five wood to behave and stay away from the fairway bunkers. This leaves me with a 134 yard uphill approach. I was looking for positive affirmation from my playing partners that the 8 was the right club, but they had abandoned me, as if I had leprosy. I over cooked it as well, to leave myself with a 20-25 downhill slider. I hit it on the toe to take some of the break out and mercifully it slithered to a stop about two feet from the hole. I tapped it in and savored the moment.
Woodmont is a decent golf course that will always be special to me, as the home of my first red score.