Beware the Par 4 Beasts: Myrtle Beach’s 5 Potential Round Wreckers

Whether you call it a round-wrecker, a scorecard killer, or simply the big number, we all hope to avoid the hole that can sour your round quicker than a snap hook off the tee.

Those blow ups are almost always attributable to our own poor play, but there are certain holes where the risk of a triple bogey or worse is more likely than others. As you plan your next Myrtle Beach golf trip, here are the par 4s – all of them outstanding holes on highly acclaimed courses – you must be wary of.

Keep in mind, this is compiled from the perspective of a (very) average golfer and all distances are from the white tees.

● The most fearsome par 4 at the Beach is the 441-yard fifth hole on Barefoot’s Fazio Course. There is plenty of fairway, but water lurks on the right and sand on the left off the tee, and that’s before a long uphill approach to a green protected by a deep bunker in front. For mid to high handicappers, five is absolutely a good score here and even that may require some short game magic. (pictured right)

● If Fazio No. 5 isn’t the area’s most daunting two-shooter, the ninth (top photo) at TPC Myrtle Beach is. The 445-yarder is straight as an arrow, but with trees lining both sides of the fairway and an elevated green flanked by sand on the right, it’s a frightening way to finish the opening side. Par is great, bogey is good, and even double isn’t a complete disaster here.

● Players in the inaugural Myrtle Beach Classic may not find No. 18 at the Dunes Golf & Beach Club to be that daunting, but for more middling golfers, it’s a beast. This hole always seems to play longer than the 365 yards on the scorecard would suggest. With the prevailing wind typically in your face, the approach is over water to a green that runs from back to front with sand on both sides. We all like to finish on a high note, especially when playing a great course, but it’s tough to do at the Dunes Club.

● Jack Nicklaus is golf’s most decorated champion, and No. 18 on his signature design at Long Bay will test the best of players. The 368-yard, nearly 90-degreeLong Bay 18th dogleg right plays around a lake the entire way. Feel free to bail out left off the tee, but it makes the approach to a green where the flag always seems to be positioned on the starboard side (i.e. closer to the water) even longer and more intimidating. Make par here and you will head to the clubhouse grill with a deserved smile on your face. (pictured right)

● Myrtle Beach’s first course is home to what I believe to be one of the area’s most significant challenges, the 426-yard third hole. The fairway is the widest at Pine Lakes Country Club, but you want your drive to favor the left side because the approach will make the hardest of men sweat. Water borders the right side of the green and leaves only a sliver of room to miss short. The further you are right off the tee, the more water you must carry on the second shot. My blood pressure rises just thinking about this approach.

Oftentimes the challenge of a difficult hole is as much mental as it is physical, so try not to psych yourself out before challenging these doozies.

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