This lonely gem can make your next trip to Pinehurst even better

CCNC is a slice of one thing completely distinctive.

james dangle

I’m not an professional in lots of issues.

I do not perceive geometry. I don’t know learn how to fly a airplane. I’ve by no means baked as a lot as one cupcake in my life. Should you requested me to construct a bookcase with out the assistance of the web, I’d be a jeopardy to each sawmill and Dwelling Depot on the East Coast. But when I’ve expertise in somethingit is the good golf programs of the sand hills of North Carolina, the place I’ve spent the higher a part of a month of my life exploring, strolling and enjoying these previous two years.

By the point June 2022 rolled round, I assumed I had seen all that Sandhills needed to provide. I had taken the psychedelic journey via Tobacco Street, endured the Rossian brilliance of Medium pines and pine needles, and I laughed via the entire Pinehurst expertise…twice. There was extra golf within the space, in fact, however was there completely different Golf? she doubted it

Then I obtained an invite to the North Carolina Nation Membership.

CCNC and Pinehurst are separated by simply over 1,000 ft and what seems like just a few photo voltaic techniques. The 2 fields could share the identical soil, however that’s… all. On one facet of the fence is a golf trip mecca, the place eight programs stretch out over the sand-covered land just like the coiled tentacles of an octopus, the drink carts and golf buddies are limitless, and the enjoyment of shared expertise fills him with no matter. warmth that the solar doesn’t have. On the opposite facet of the fence is the precise reverse: the Nation Membership of North Carolina, a rigorously groomed oasis of silence, tranquility, and solitude.


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nick piastowski



By way of the gates of CCNC, you may discover a sleek southern welcome from the employees and a stately clubhouse. What you will not discover are golfers, not even on the driving vary, which is simply steps from the primary fairway of the Dogwood Course, the extra well-known of CCNC’s two 18-hole programs (the Cardinal Course, opened in 1989, is the opposite).

Silence is CCNC’s superpower. Even when the sphere is packed, CCNC’s loudest distraction is the rustling of the pines within the afternoon breeze. The routing of the Dogwood Course ensures that interactions with different golfers are by selection solely. Even the world surrounding the clubhouse vibrates with a delicate buzz, thanks largely to a split-level format that helps funnel golfers via the professional store upstairs and different guests via the ballroom and adjoining restaurant.

Shortly after you arrive, somebody will level you within the route of the primary tee, the place you may choose up a golf cart, scorecard, and a handful of tee containers. Then he is prepared to walk via the work of Ellis Maples and Willard Byrd with the slowly descending solar his solely information.

Every little thing is correctly on the Nation Membership of North Carolina, right down to the smallest element. As Pinehurst revels in its authenticity, CCNC transports you to a world the place grass grows in uniform patterns and bunker sand seemingly by no means strikes misplaced.

The primary 9 shock, primarily because of its fixed range. There are tall, imposing holes that construct on the form of the valley under and different low, flat ones highlighted by their fueling; an island-green Par 3 engulfed by water and a Par 5 bisecting a ramp of bushes so slim it’s essential to keep away from the urge to hit a 4-iron off the tee. By the point you flip onto the fifth gap, you have misplaced all idea of the Sandhills as you knew them, by the point you come back to the clubhouse on the eleventh gap, you have misplaced all thought of ​​what’s to come back.

Nonetheless, it is the again 9 that sticks in your reminiscence: a wonderful stretch of holes that feels prefer it stretches out for miles earlier than you. Strategically and architecturally, the part from 12 to 17 is the perfect within the area, however emotionally it presents much more than that.

The day we performed CCNC, we caught the again 9 in time for a wonderful cloudless sundown. It was round 100 levels by the point we headed out, however significantly cooler by the point we acquired to the ultimate stretch. The solar was taking pictures golden rays via the pines, illuminating the golf course with angular rays. My {golfing} companions and I chuckle as we drive method pictures to the floor of the inexperienced, marveling on the silence and the satisfaction that comes from being actually alone in a stupendous spot.

Finally, one among us dared to surprise if CCNC actual The brothers course was not Pinehurst No. 2, however Augusta Nationwide. After all, I used to be unsuitable. Even probably the most hardened member of the membership would agree that there’s a appreciable hole between the 2 programs. However when it comes to serenity and easy-going Southern appeal, that comparability is not as far-fetched because it sounds.

The spherical ended and we went again to the automotive with out saying a phrase. Lastly, one among us snapped again to actuality.

“Properly that was any as anticipated.”

He was proper, in fact. After a month of {golfing} at Sandhills, CCNC had nonetheless managed to blow my thoughts. However now that we had tried Pinehurst’s extra notable personal take a look at, I discovered myself wrestling with a much bigger downside.

He needed to discover a manner again.

james dangle

Writer of Golf.com

James Colgan is an assistant editor at GOLF and contributes tales to the web site and journal. He writes Scorching Mic, GOLF’s weekly media column, and makes use of his broadcast expertise on the model’s social media and video platforms. A 2019 graduate of Syracuse College, James—and evidently his golf recreation—remains to be thawing after 4 years within the snow. Earlier than becoming a member of GOLF, James obtained a scholarship to caddy (and a artful looper) on Lengthy Island, the place he’s from. You’ll be able to attain him at james.colgan@golf.com.

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