Keep rolling, rolling, rolling at hilly Pointe South Golf Club in Augusta
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- The view out the back window of the pro shop at Pointe South Golf Club gives a visitor the wrong first impression. A look at the first tee and the 18th hole makes it look like the property is flat. That's hardly the case.
Once you get out on the golf course, Pointe South is filled with rolling hills, leaving you with enough uphill and downhill shots to keep things interesting. The course is hardly boring.
What you don't find are houses. The course is not tied into a housing development, so there was no pressure for designers to shoehorn holes around the premium plots of land. The owners simply took the land they had and built their golf course nicely within the parameters.
"I like it because it's out in the country and it's quiet," said Phil Wetherington, who drives down from North Augusta to play there on a regular basis. "So many courses have houses all over the place. Here it's just golf. It's quiet and peaceful."
Pointe South is about seven miles away from the I-520 Bobby Jones Expressway that loops around the city. The surrounding area would still be considered "country" by most people, or at least extremely suburban. There's a four-lane divided highway that runs in front, but you don't even notice it once you get back on the golf course.
Pointe South: The course
Pointe South Golf Club isn't a big place. It was designed by Tim Rivers and Joe Clement and works around eight lakes or ponds. The course is modest in length. It plays just 6,460 yards from the back tees and to par 72. But there are plenty of teeth in this course, particularly if your not smart or if you can't keep the ball in play off the tee.
The strategy comes in with the numerous doglegs that pop up. There are at least seven holes with some sort of bend to them, ranging from slight (no. 1) to severe (no. 13) You have choices there: Choose a long iron and keep it in play, take a driver and work it around the dogleg, or try to grip it and rip it over the trees that guard the corner.
The toughest rated hole is no. 3, a par 4 that plays 392 from the back tees. The driving area is more narrow on this hole, with trees lining both sides of the fairway. Plus there are two fairway bunkers that pinch in about the place most people hit their drives.
A more challenging hole is no. 5, a 471-yard par 5. Trees line the left side all the way to the green, but the real trick is dealing with a small pond about 50 yards from the green. The water obstacle stuck in the middle of the fairway removes any margin of error and requires an accurate approach.
One of Pointe South Golf Club's more popular holes is no. 7, a 479-yard par 5 that features a lake that pokes its way into the fairway about halfway down the hole. The water may also come into play on an approach shot that fades too far. It's all about taking the proper strategy, which could mean a birdie putt or a big number.
Still, it's one of three par 5s that are shorter than 500 yards, the exception being the 561-yard 15th, which plays downhill from the most elevated place on the course. No. 15 is long and narrow with trees guarding the right.
No. 15 and no. 16 are back-to-back par 5s, with the 16th playing only 496 yards and rated as the easiest hole on the course. Other than a short drive over a pond, there is little tricky about no. 16.
The par 3s are fairly diverse and playable at Pointe South. None of them are too long, but they offer a variety of options, such as no. 6, which plays 196 yards uphill over water (which really isn't a factor). Pointe South is among the few courses that finish with a par 3, and the 200-yard finale plays uphill and is a difficult hole.
Amenities at Pointe South Golf Club
The greens at Pointe South are bermuda and hold up well in the Augusta heat. They would rate slightly better than average. The greens don't have too much undulation, but are often tilted to better accept a good shot or reject a poor one.
The course has a nice practice areas. There is an ample grass teeing area that is separated from the parking lot and main road by a row of trees. There is a nice practice putting green. The clubhouse is spacious and features a nice snack area to enjoy a post-round beverage. Staff members are friendly and ready to share course strategy if you ask.
Pointe South Golf Club: The verdict
Pointe South is a course that anyone can appreciate.
Low handicap players can play it from the back and think their way around the course. High handicappers won't be frustrated by the length, and there's not enough rough to get into too much trouble. Don't get overconfident by the lack of length on the scorecard, though, because there's enough water, sand and trees to inflate those scores.
July 8, 2013