It’s only 6,325 yards from the tips, but there are enough risk/reward holes at Pebble Creek Golf Club in Colts Neck, New Jersey to last a golfer a whole year.
The course, designed by Hal Purdy is chocked full of short to medium length par-fours that simply beg the long ball bitters to go for the putting surface with a big stick in their hands. But with water and bunkers scattered all about this pleasingly eclectic track, you had better be precise or those dreams of birdies will quickly turn in double bogeys.
Purdy did a majestic job of routing Pebble Creek through mature woodlands on the front nine and along open meadows, ponds and creeks on the back nine. It all combines for a very pleasing, interesting round of golf that draws visitors from miles around and has them coming back for more.
Recent improvements to the course, which included a major tree removal project, has made the course more playable for mid to high-handicappers, while maintaining the layout as a real tester for accomplished players.
“The owners have put a lot of money into improving the course and to make it more player friendly,” said Mary Schneider, teaching professional at the club. “We have removed trees and widened fairways to open up shots and to also help speed up play.”
The staff at Pebble Creek is welcoming and accommodating and the teaching pros pride themselves on offering on-course instruction and playing lessons.
But let’s talk about the golf course, shall we?
The first hole is only 330 yards and is an indication of things to come. It’s one of only two holes on the front side not routed through woods. A well-struck drive gets you close to the green and leaves a flip wedge to a putting surface guarded by three bunkers.
The eighth hole is rated as the most difficult on the layout. The 540-yard par-five is a double dogleg and demands navigation through trees and past sand traps.
The fun really begins on the back side, where water comes into play on most holes.
The 12th hole, a 320-yard par-four, has water to the left down most of its length and a large bunker guards the front right portion of the green.
The 13th is about as good a short par-four as you will find anywhere. It’s only 298 yards from the tips, but the tee shot must clear two water hazards and stay out of the deep rough that lines the fairway.
After a beastly par-five of 585 yards, the 15th hole that doglegs severely to the left, you are faced with a delicious dilemma on the tee box of 344-yard par-four 16th. A lake guards the right side of the dogleg and it’s only 230 yards from the tee to green by cutting over the lake. Of course, anything short is in the drink, so the wiser play might be a long iron or fairway wood to the corner to leave a wedge into a large green.
“This isn’t a long course but there is a lot of water the back side,” said Schneider. “Better players find it fun and they get to work on their irons and short game.”
Pebble Creek GC has an attractive, comfortable clubhouse and a covered patio that overlooks the 18th hole. It’s a great place to relax after a round or hold an outing or special event.
Pebble Creek Golf Club
Colts Neck, N.J.