You’ve got a hundred options for golf in The Grand Strand. Fairways are not a rare commodity in the stretch of coastal land that runs between North Carolina and deep into South Carolina, all centred on Myrtle Beach.
The big decision for those planning a trip to the region, though, is where exactly to play?
No course selection is more important than deciding on the first layout that you will tackle. Veteran visitors will understand. Many trips to Myrtle Beach, at least for Canadians, follow a long winter where the golf clubs are tucked away in favour of some icy pursuit. If that is not the case then maybe they just have not played for awhile and need to get tuned up for the multi-round days that follow.
Although many people will choose to keep the premium golf offerings to the end of their trip as a “special round”, I vote in favour of dropping a little extra cash and playing a course that is both forgiving, compelling, and well, just plain awesome.
I say this as a frequent wanderer in this part of the Carolinas. I’ve got the routine pretty much figured out after dozens of visits.
There once was a day when I would find the cheapest course possible to play on the opening day of a foray to “Myrtle” but there was never a guarantee of what unpredictable golf swings really need – wide fairways and quality turf conditions where you can really gauge your game.
Then, I discovered True Blue Plantation and the True Blue Golf Club.
Built in the Pawley’s Island area in the south end of the strand, this Mike Strantz beauty offers a rare combination. While it boasts both length (7126 yards) and difficulty (145) from the back tees, it is eminently playable from the multiple forward decks, even for the “emerging player.” The reason? The layout is spread across vast acreage, providing wide fairway corridors.
The big demand comes in the approaches where sand, and occasionally water, play a prominent role. But even so, Strantz, a true artist who only crafted nine individual golf course designs in his cancer-shortened life, made the place so aesthetically pleasing that score really becomes irrelevant for many.
He transformed a former rice and indigo plantation into a golf course that has been garnering awards since the day it opened in 1998.
So the next time you head for Myrtle Beach, not only give True Blue Plantation a place on your itinerary, consider it as a first stop.
I guarantee it will get your Grand Strand trip off to the right start every time.
/ Scott MacLeod @Flagstick