Golf Courses You Dislike ?

I’ve been inspired by the topics of’ top 5 courses you played’. I started a list of courses the refugees listed that I hadn’t experienced and then I started thinking about the exact opposite. Courses I absolutely hated and wouldn’t recommend. I’d love to hear about courses others did not enjoy for whatever reason.

I’m not talking about the little local muni so much. I mean courses that have no business being terrible. Whatever your issue wether it be Course design, maintenance , greens etc. just interested
I’ll start off with a few:

  • Debelle golf course - Burbank Ca. : several holes where the play is 9 iron off the tee to the end of the fairway, then a 3 wood to the green. Not to mention gimmicky holes where you gotta hit over the rock on top of the mountain to maybe have a chance at hitting the fairway.

  • Lost Canyons GC - Simi Valley , CA. ( I think it may be closed now ) due to a playability factor of near 0.02! Fred couples design and because I am a Freddy fan I had to stop going here because It made me curse his name ! This place built thru a canyon , narrow landing areas , the entire course sloped towards the canyon , which made for the not so affectionate course nickname “Lost Balls”. You could hit the middle of the fairway and lose your ball on multiple holes . Not to mention the $100 greens fees when it was trying to be a top shelf course.

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I think it’s more interesting what kind of course you don’t like.

I played at a course in Glasgow called Cowglen. It was a James Braid design, although a few holes were newer.

Most of the original holes required 1 ok shot and 1 very good shot to be on the green. I mean very good straight drives to a certain side of the fairway, or even a shaped shot on a dog leg.

When you were taking on the very good shot, a miss meant a certain bogey with very little margin for error, i.e. hitting through the dogleg or missing a raised green. Really no prospect of recovery or of a near miss still giving you a chance.

At the time I hadn’t been introduced to golf course architecture, but now that I realise it - there was really only 1 way to make a load of pars on that course. Hit the shot that was called for and in my opinion higher handicappers were disproportionately punished.

It was notable how the 3 newer holes were a bit more open with less pressure on each shot and certainly plenty of options on the par 5 and par 4. Both the par 5 and 4 were probably reachable for the longer guys, but with a ‘safer’ option for the poorer player.

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Courses that are highly rated that I found to be lacking:

  • The Wynn course in Vegas. Overpriced and unimaginative. The only thing it had going was it’s location on the strip. I hope they stick with the plan to flood that place and put it out of it’s misery.
  • Grayhawk. I generally dislike desert golf, but this was my least favorite of the Phoenix/Scottsdale courses.
  • Dunes Golf & Beach Club. You could put most Myrtle Beach courses outside of Caledonia here, just not my vibe for a golf vacation.
  • Golf Club at Cuscowilla. This was more of a disappointment than a hate. The course starts strong, but falls apart on the back 9, peaking with the 15th hole. A lot of potential and some re-work could make it good, but overall I expect more from a Coore/Crenshaw design
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Sure, it has the Ryder Cup legacy, but other than that it’s overpriced, stuffy, and just not that fun.

It’s borderline unplayable. The course is incredibly tight, the rough is way too long, and the greens are way too undulated to be this fast (14-15). As a result the pace of play is horrible. Those conditions might be good for a Spanish Open, for 99.9% of people it’s just not that much fun.

The high marks it regularly gets are based on the prestige and conditioning. I rarely heard someone who’d played there say they had fun.


As a visitor, paying the non-resident price, I found Harding Park in SF to be lackluster. Fine course, good conditioning, but not worth the $$$. Nothing memorable about the golf course.

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I think I previously went on a good rant about Scottsdale’s Kierland, but it’s what always comes to mind. $260 in season for a generic course with condo views. Someone should be ashamed.

Also, in suburban Phoenix, I really hate a course called the Legend at Arrowhead. Used to sneak out of work with friends and play here and I just despise this place. Extremely narrow Palmer design with McMansions threatening on every shot.

I don’t disagree, and I’m a local. It used to be one of the munis in the city that a city card you could play for cheap, and it wasn’t special. Then Arnold Palmer bought it, tidied it up a little, and it was marginally better. It was a LOT of back and forth with holes side by side, maybe the most boring golf course design in my opinion.

When they did finally redesign it, it got much better (the back nine wasn’t changed as much nor should it have been) but it’s still just an above average course charging a price that suggests it’s elite. Still sort of shocked they played a WGC event here, it’s not up to snuff in that regard.

I played Gleneagles, the PGA course that the Ryder Cup was at in 2014. Maybe it’s just because it’s a Parklands course designed by Nicklaus, and everything else we were playing in Scotland was a links course that were centuries old, but it was just sort of soulless to me. In fairness, we played the setup of the European Championships which finished the day prior, but there were a few holes worth remembering, a nice halfway house, and aside from that I wished we had driven down to East Lothian and played North Berwick instead.

At Gleneagles, the Kings and Queens are the original courses designed by James Braid about 100 years ago.

The PGA Centenary was put in so they could have professional events there as the Kings couldn’t really be stretched out much longer and have room for spectators.

Personally, for the pros it looks good and has plenty of room. But the local knowledge is to play the Kings and Queens.

Yep. We used a tour operator for our trip and aside from Gleneagles we couldn’t have been happier but that course is just not at all necessary for me to ever play again. I’d be thrilled to play the original courses, but the Centenary just feels so out of place.

Spanish Bay

even the Spanish consider it stuffy and unfriendly to visitors so that is saying something :rofl:

Valhalla (would like to see it again, long hot day and the course was in terrible shape)

Inverness (miserable company both times and the back nine was just incredibly boring and bad. However, I can’t wait to see the redesign)

TPC Myrtle Beach. Just did not like it at all.

Most Nicklaus courses


TPC Harding Park - Echo comments above that the non-resident greens fee is off base for what the course has to offer. Only really remember 3-4 holes. Would play regularly at the local rate however. Would prefer to drive an hour South and play Pasatiempo any day (as a non-resident).

Cog Hill #4 Dubsdread - Experience was ruined by a 6 hour round. Still have nightmares but do owe the course another shot.

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Pinehurst #8. The front 9 made me want to scream but realize I may be in the minority.

Also partially driven by the fact that the dumb top 100 NC courses has it #12 in the state which I cannot comprehend. Particularly ahead of OTC, Wade Hampton, Eagle Point, Mid Pines. Hell I’d rather play 5 or 7 (though definitely not 9).

Whistling Straits. The place just tries so hard to be what it’s not. None of it feels authentic. I like Pete dyes courses generally but that place just makes me want to take a shower, if that makes sense.

More of a blanket statement, but I hate courses that block off the majority of the tee box with an over hanging limb or a chute which forces a single type of shot shape. Not saying it can’t be done effectively but just rarely is.

all the country clubs but I also kinda hate the course I played today (it might be too narrow)