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Hidden Gems: SC Golf Courses

Bob Gillespie Bob Gillespie
Bob is a former sports writer at Columbia’s The State newspaper. He enjoys golf at South Carolina’s 350-plus courses, and after a round, sampling craft beers from the Palmetto State’s breweries.
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South Carolina is home to more than 400 golf courses, some more well-known than others. Check out these insider courses, located in small communities, and golf where the locals golf. 

Indian River Golf Course, West Columbia

Designed by Lyn Young and near Columbia Metropolitan Airport, Indian River isn't long (6,507 yards from the back tees) but offers a variety of holes and terrain. A massive tree-cutting project opened up previously unseen vistas, including one on the par-5 16th, long and tight with a downhill approach to a green set against the property's large lake.

 

Pine Forest Country Club, Summerville

Pine Forest Country Club, located northwest of Charleston off Interstate 26, Summerville is home to this traditional, challenging Bob Spence design, nicknamed "Little Augusta." Water is in play on every par-3, and the area's best players love the slightly uphill, 453-yard par-4 finishing hole, dubbed "A Long Way Home."

 

Plantation Course at Edisto, Edisto Island

The Plantation Course at Edisto, originally built by Greenville, SC, architect Tom Jackson in 1973, was renovated by new ownership in 2005 and offers a test of accuracy over length (6,130 yards maximum), with plenty of water and marshland to avoid. The par-4, dogleg left 14th plays over water both off the tee and on the approach.

 

Prestwick Country Club, Myrtle Beach

It's hard to be unknown in Myrtle Beach, but this 1989 Pete Dye design was voted "Top Five Best-Kept Secrets in America" by Golf Digest. With creeks, lakes and typical Dye mounding/bunkering/waste areas, Prestwick retains a classic feel, especially its par-5, 537-yard ninth and par-4, 441-yard 18th holes, which wrap around opposite sides of a lake.

 

Persimmon Hill Golf Club, Saluda

Players passing through Saluda en route to Hickory Knob State Park Golf Course or Savannah Lakes Resort's two courses might miss this classic, 6,925-yard Russell Breeden design. Persimmon Hill boasts the state's longest hole - the 630-yard, par-5 18th - and a pair of par-3 holes measuring 230 and 240 yards, plus water on five holes.

 

Edgewater Golf Course, Lancaster

This former Fuzzy Moeller-affiliated course is new enough that its website suggests following its directions since GPS won't get one there. With terrific rolling terrain, amazing vistas and plenty of water in play, Edgewater isn't easy to find, but it's worth the effort, notably to play the dazzling and demanding uphill, 444-yard par-5 18th hole.

 

Fox Creek Golf Course, Lamar

To find Fox Creek, or Lamar for that matter, it helps to know the back way along S.C. 34 going from Columbia to Darlington Speedway. At 6,902 yards, this design by local James Goodson is open, fun and playable, but with quick greens. The par-5, 580-yard 18th curves left around a lake and can make or break a round.

 

Wyboo Golf Club, Manning

Greenville-based architect Tom Jackson designated Wyboo, an out-of-the-way course (outside Manning on S.C. 283), as one of his "Signature Designs," and the winding, tree-lined fairways and water make it a blast to play. The par-3 13th hole, 191 yards over water with a huge oak tree guarding the right side, demands precision and length.

 

Boscobel Golf & Country Club, Pendleton

Part of the Anderson Area Golf Group (AAG), 1932 Ed Freeman design abuts U.S. 76 en route to Clemson. Mature oaks and rolling terrain are the obvious features, but Boscobel's bent grass greens are its true defense, so demanding the Clemson golf team regularly practices on them. The downhill, 204-yard par-3 10th hole is a favorite.

Bob Gillespie
Bob is a former sports writer at Columbia’s The State newspaper. He enjoys golf at South Carolina’s 350-plus courses, and after a round, sampling craft beers from the Palmetto State’s breweries.