Mount Pleasant, S.C. Offers a Group of Fine Courses
For a town of only 70,000 people, Mount Pleasant, S.C. has a wealth of superb daily free golf courses to choose from. Of course, the town benefits from being a bedroom community, to some extent, of the jewel of the Lowcountry, Charleston, which has its own special cache of courses, including those at Kiawah.
The northern portion of Mount Pleasant boasts several of the finest golf courses and clubs in the Charleston area, RiverTowne Country Club, Dunes West Golf and River Club, and Charleston National Golf Club.
Dunes West, designed by Arthur Hills, plays anywhere from 6,859 yards down to 5,208 yards from the forward markers. Water comes into play on seven holes and the fairways are fairly large and forgiving. The greens are mildly undulating and guarded by bunkers, both sand and grass.
RiverTowne is Arnold Palmer’s first signature course in the area. The club for several years hosted Annika Sorenstam’s event on the LPGA Tour, and is situated among scenic marshlands and live oaks, with 13 holes routed along the Wando River and Horlbeck Creek. Tree-lined fairways provide generous landing areas to set up approach shots to multi-tiered greens guarded by bunkers and water.
Charleston National Country Club was originally conceived as an exclusive club, along the lines of Augusta National Golf Club. The course was carved out of property near the Intracoastal Waterway, through natural wetlands and lagoons and a pine and oak tree forest. The result was a championship caliber golf course with some of the best views on the southeastern coast.
Wild Dunes Resort is located on the barrier island, Isle of Palms about 1,600 acres between the Atlantic Ocean and the Intracoastal Waterway. Wild Dunes has become famous for its two Tom Fazio-designed layouts; the Links Course and the Harbor Course, which offer 36 holes of championship golf and their unique, thoughtful routings serve as pleasant contrasts to one another.
One of Tom Fazio’s first courses, the par-72 Links Course captures the natural beauty of Wild Dunes Resort with rolling fairways framed by lush palms and finishing holes overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. The par-70 Bay Course is shorter in total length than its sister track and features various water views, from lagoons to salt water marshes to the Intracoastal Waterway.
The Harbor Course has an eclectic mix of holes and features water and bunkers aplenty. The ninth and 10th holes play along the Intracoastal Waterway. The ninth is a demanding, 564-yarder that, when played downwind, is reachable in two for the big hitters. Right center tee shots sets up the best angle. Sand and waste areas play as rough and are not as penalizing as they appear. Big hitters may try to drive the green downwind on the par-four, 321-yard 10th but if you play conservative par is fairly easy.
Located on the banks of Charleston Harbor, Patriots Point Golf Course offers the feel of a true links course. Ocean breezes alter the character of the layout, which ambles though marshlands, lagoons and tidal creeks. The William Byrd-designed track plays 6,900 yards from the tips with three other sets of tees. This is a playable course for all golfers, and offers one of the more scenic and memorable rounds in the area.