If you want to be challenged by a golf course, the owners of Pound Ridge Golf Club in Pound Ridge, N.Y. have just the course for you.
Almost dastardly difficult, Pound Ridge, which opened in June of 2008, features over 100 bunkers, wildly undulating greens, severe elevation changes, doglegs, water, and deep rough lining most of the fairways. Once you’ve completed your round a feeling of either total frustration or exhilaration will flow over you like a tidal wave.
Pete Dye’s only design in New York State, the course is full of the master architect’s signature flairs, such as difficult green complexes that place an emphasis on short game skills. Of course, those skills come into play only after you’ve reach the putting surfaces, which is no mean feat. Visually, Pound Ridge GC is stunning. Despite massive amounts of earth moving, the course looks quite natural and in keeping with the local terrain. The conditions are impeccable.
Even played from the third set of tees down (6,229 yards), where most all visitors should play, the course is an extremely stringent test of one’s ability. There are a number of forced carries at Pound Ridge over massive natural areas that demand tee shots of at least 200-plus yards to find the short grass. It isn’t that each hole when taken by itself is too difficult, it’s more the cumulative effect of facing complicated shots every time you step up to the ball--both on the tees and the somewhat wide fairways--that taxes the golfer’s focus.
An example of the challenge Dye imbued the course with can be found on the 5th hole, a par-four that looks inviting on the scorecard, measuring just over 300 yards from the tips. But stepping onto the tee one is greeted with the sight of over a dozen bunkers scattered about the fairway, to its side, and by the green.
The 9th, a 573-yard par-five that winds up a hill, calls for a tee shot of well over 200 yards to carry a natural area. The 10th, again, looks unimposing enough on the scorecard at under 400 yards, but the hole doglegs left down a hill with nasty bunkers guarding the landing area.
The 11th, a 208-yard par-three, may be the best short hole on the course. There is trouble all around. A stout long-iron or fairway wood will be needed to reach the slightly elevated putting surface.
Talk about tough finishes!
The penultimate hole is a 460-yard par-four that has deep fescue lining both sides, and the 477-yard 18th is a monster that demands a strong tee shot and a long iron or fairway wood to a green protected by bunkers and water to the left.
Make no mistake about it; Pound Ridge GC is one special course. Just check your scoring expectations at the bag drop. Enjoy the challenge and the views.
Pound Ridge is conveniently situated just 20 minutes south of Danbury, CT and 15 minutes from downtown Stamford
Pound Ridge Golf Club
Pound Ridge, N.Y.