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'Grinter' Top-20 Courses in the US


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There's a really good blog post digging into golfer performance by handicap level this morning, which utilizes TheGrint's database of recorded rounds. One of the other features of TheGrint is the ability for everyday golfers, like you and me, to give a brief overview of the condition and playability of the courses that you visit.


I've been a 'Grinter' for the last year and have found it really useful - I've even played a round with a random person through TheGrint and the local Club that I'm a part of.


TheGrint have come up with the Top-20 courses in the US. I know, everybody has their own list of Top-20 courses - this list is compiled from over 100,000 reviews on its site from members who have played the courses. The list is limited to courses that have had at least 30 reviews, but gives both a 'fun rating' and 'shape rating'. There are some well known courses on here, but most I've not heard of (no local courses in Hawaii make the list, unfortunately).





The link has photos of all of the Top-20 courses as well - some of which look amazing!


Have you played any of these courses? Would you agree with the rankings for the ones you've played? Are there any surprizes in your neck of the woods?

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I've played 2 Pebble, 4 Wolf Creek, 9 Spyglass, 14 Oak Quarry, and 18 Myrtle National.


Spyglass and Pebble were both in ragged condition when I played them, so I don't know about the conditions votes.  Myrtle National was nothing to shout about.  Oak Quarry was very scenic and unusual, it gets points for being quirky and not really very expensive or painful to play.   Wolf Creek is a novelty course.   Eye-popping the first time you play it, gimmicky after that.

bag - SunMountain Synch with Ogio Synergy X4 cart
driver - :callaway-small: Optiforce 440, Paderson Kevlar Green stiff 46.5"
fwoods - :taylormade-small: Jetspeed, 3HL regular
irons - :taylormade-small:  Speedblades 3-8, 85g stiff steel, 2 up
wedges - :edilon-small: Scor 40, 45, 50, 54, 58
putter - :ping-small: Ketsch 35" slight arc, SuperStroke 2.0 mid-slim
ball - :titelist-small: ProV1x

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I've played 18 Myrtle Beach National - Kings North, 10 True Blue, and 3 Caledonia Golf & Fish Club; all on the same trip. A buddy of mine from Albuquerque wanted to play Golf in Myrtle Beach for his 50th birthday and he invited me to join him and two of his other friends from Albuquerque. We played 10 courses in 6 days, and it rained every day! Caledonia is correctly placed. It was by far the most fun to play and in the best shape. They were all nice, just wet.


I have also played 4 Wolf Creek and it is spectacular. I agree with markb's assessment. Between Wolf Creek and Caledonia, I would choose Caledonia every time. It is a traditional layout, beautifully manicured, very challenging, but enjoyable to play.

We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

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I have played 17, 15, 13  and 8 in the past two years.  Bethpage is well Bethpage.  Baywood is a nice track but was a bit of a drive for me and not really something that I would do again unless i was in the area for another reason.  Glen Mills is a great track and the program that they have there to help children that made a few wrong turns in life is great.


A blurb from their website:  http://www.glenmillsgolf.com/golf-pa-passion/#.VH5nlYtx9OE

WITB 2023

:callaway-small: Epic Max LS 10.5* Graphite Design AD DI 7x

:callaway-small: X2Hot Pro 3 Deep Graphite Design AD GT 8x

:callaway-small: Apex UW 17* UST Elements Wind 9x

:callaway-small: X Forged CB 4 - PW MMT 105TX

:callaway-small: Jaws Raw 50* TTDG TI Spinner 115

:callaway-small: Jaws Full Toe 54* & 58* TTDG TI Spinner 115

:odyssey-small: Toulon Madison BGT Fire 34"

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I've played Caledonia and True Blue.  Both are Mike Strantz designed, and lots of fun.  Caledonia was pretty traditional, True Blue more typical of Strantz style, which relies largely on visual intimidation.  Lots of blind shots and illusions, but almost always more room than it appears.  I just played another of his courses, Tobacco Road, near Pinehurst.  

In my opinion, poll results like this are indicative not just of the quality of the courses, but the demographics of the respondents.  In this case I see a significant number of resort-area courses.  Its interesting that there are three courses from the Myrtle Beach area, but noe from Pinehurst,  Kiawah Island,  or Hawaii.  What is missing are the more exclusive private courses that many rate as the best, but that very few of us will ever get to play. No matter what, polls and lists are always going to promote discussion, and that's always fun.

:titelist-small: Irons Titleist AP2 714, KBS Tour S, 3 flat

:callaway-small: Rogue SubZero, GD YS-Six X

:vokey-small: 52, 56, and 60 wedges

:ping-small: B60 G5i putter

Right handed

Reston, Virginia

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I've played Saratoga National Golf Club...a mere two letter update of Sarasota National. Does that count?

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I've played #20 Orange County & #6 Grand Cypress/New Course this past February.  Both great courses - I preferred Orange County personally.  And I live 15 minutes from Bethpage, so I take a whipping there every month or so when it's open.  Rev always raves about World Woods - I'll have to give that a shot, and I'm hoping for a business trip out to the Silicon Valley area so I can run down to Pebble in the next year or so.

<p>In my bag: Ping G LS Tec 9* Tour 65 Stiff, Cobra F8 3-4 wood HZRDUS Yellow 6.0, Calloway 21* X Forged Utility iron (steel stiff), Ping G30 white dot 4-9 Stiff 110 gm KBS tours  Scor 48,52,56,60 Wedges, Nike Method Core MC3</p><p>

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I have played #5 several times and I believe Rev & I and maybe Jax will try it during the Holidays.

Driver: image.png.6ba1c8a254ad57aa05e527b74c2e04ba.png0811 XF 12* w/Evenflo Riptide CB Senior shaft

Fairways:  image.png.80321f01fc46450b6f428c7daf7b3471.png0211 5W & 7W w/ Evenflo Riptide CB  regular shaft and Tour Edge E521 9W w/Fubuki HD50 regular shaft

Hybrid: None in bag at the moment

IronsTitleist T300 5-PW w/Fubuki MV Senior graphite shafts w/Golf Pride Tour

Wedges: Titleist T300 48* GW w/Fubuki MV Senior shaft and Edison forged 53* and 57* wedges with KB PGI Senior shafts(80 grm).

Putter: 33”   Evnroll ER2 w/Evnroll Gravity Grip or Nike Method Core Drone  w/Evnroll Gravity Grip

Bag: Vice cart bag(Black/Lime). 

Ball: Maxfli Tour CG, Titleist Pro V1x or Titleist TruFeel

Using Shot Scope X5 and MG4000 Rangefinder


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I've played 5,6,9,11 and 20.  I liked Fossil Trace because while on a business trip, I played there with rental clubs completely not fit for my swing.  Of course, I went out and shot a 75, about 7 strokes better than my average.


I played SpyGlass going on 15 years ago now - I don't remember too much about the course - just that the weather and atmosphere was perfect.


I've played World Woods probably 50+ times.  I love the layout but cannot putt there for the life of me.  I've made my worst putting rounds ever there.


As for Panther Lake, great layout and the greens usually run quick.  I've scored anywhere from 77 - 88 there.  I want to try and get there over the X-mas holiday.

Driver: Callaway Optiforce 440 9.5* with Diamama Blue S+ 62g Stiff shaft

3 and 5 wood: Callaway Big Bertha with Fubuki Z65 Stiff

Hybrid: Wilson FG Tour 4 hybrid

Irons: 5 iron: Cleveland Altitude Stiff; 6 -PW Callaway Apex Pro, KBS Tour-V Stff

Wedges: 51*, 55* and 58* SCORE with Genius Stiff

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I have not played any on that list. However, I would be more then happy to put any on them on my bucket list. A couple of my buddies and I have made a pact that on my 50th birthday we are going to play Pebble. 

What's in the Bag

Bag- Sun Mountian 

Driver - Callaway Rouge 9.5* HZRDUS Smoke Yellow
Fairway wood - Ping G15 3 wood

Hybrid - Tour Edge Exotics XCG6 19* 
Irons - Callaway XR 5-PW
Wedges - Cleveland 588-RTX 52* 56* 60*
Putter - Scotty Cameron Select Newport 3 - SuperStroke Wrist lock Grip


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