Pawleys Plantation Golf Club is one of the Myrtle Beach area’s prettiest courses, but the coastal landscape that creates that beauty often presents challenges that scare Pro V1s back into their owner’s bag (there are good times to hit a Nitro, after all).
With that in mind, if you are planning to play the Jack Nicklaus design – and you should be – here are three shots that will send a chill up the spine of the best of players.
— After easing into the round with an opening par 5, Nicklaus drops the 401-yard (all distances from Redtail/white tees) second hole (pictured right) into your lap and the approach has proven to be a doozy for your faithful correspondent. The second shot on the par 4 plays downhill but a waste bunker snakes along the left side, waiting to swallow anything less than a purely struck shot. Nobody wants to hang a big number on the board early, and your approach will go a long way in determining how successfully you navigate the course’s hardest hole.
— It almost goes without saying, but the tee shot on No. 13 is as daunting as it is beautiful (top photo). The par 3, which plays to a peninsula green surrounded by a tidal marsh, is listed at 117 yards but the tees are often inside 100 yards. With the prevailing wind in your face, it’s as dramatic a shot as the Myrtle Beach golf scene has to offer and it’s impossible not to think about before you arrive on the tee. This knee-knocker is the one shot everyone in your group will discuss.
— I’m hedging here because the entirety of the par 5 14th hole (pictured right) has created more scar tissue in my mind than a UFC fighter accumulates in a lifetime. The marsh runs along the right side from the tee to the edge of the green. Any player with a predisposition to push the ball (I prefer to think of it as a push as opposed to a slice) will have to contend with the marsh throughout the 497-yard challenge. As a result, nearly every swing on No. 14 qualifies as frightening for me, but I’ll include them as one entry.
There were certainly other worthy contenders, including the tee shot on No. 3 and the approach on No. 16, but the three “shots” mentioned above are the scariest Pawleys Plantation has to offer.