Seven New Golf Courses You Can Play in 2010

September 22, 2010
Terri Cullen

Golfer's bible Golf Magazine counts down the "Top 100 Public Courses You Can Play" each year, and highlights the courses that are newly open to the public. This year's additions to the list include courses that are among the most scenic -- and pain-inducing -- in the world.

Golfer’s bible Golf Magazine counts down the “Top 100 Public Courses You Can Play” each year, and highlights the courses that are newly open to the public. This year’s additions to the list include courses that are among the most scenic — and pain-inducing – in the world. (And I bet you can’t wait to try them!) Here’s Golf Magazine’s Class of 2010:

1. Old Macdonald, Bandon Dunes Resort, Bandon, Ore.

Designer: Tom Doak and Jim Urbina

Par: 72

Length: 7,200 yards

Greens Fee: $75 to $275

Reservations: (888) 345-6008

Old Macdonald debuted in June 2010, with a layout that is designed to be a tribute to Charles Blair Macdonald (1856-1939), the father of American golf course architecture and founder of the U.S. Golf Association. Old Macdonald is the fourth course in Oregon’s Bandon Dunes Resort. Golf Magazine suggests its best hole is the 7th, a 377-yard, par 4, which climbs atop a dune ridge in full view of the Pacific.

2. Cog Hill, Lemont, Ill.

Designer: Dick Wilson and Joe Lee (renovated by Rees Jones)

Par: 72

Length: 7,554 yards

Greens Fee: $155 (Dubsdread)

Reservations: (866) 264-4455

Ranked No. 4 in Golf Magazine’s Top 100 public golf courses, Cog Hill’s Dubsdread course combines tight landing areas with heavily bunkered, undulating greens. The course, with newly redesigned and repositioned sand bunkers, features a 497-yard, par 4 finishing hole with a green perilously close to a nearby pond.

3. Mauna Kea, Kohala Coast, Hawaii

Designer: Robert Trent Jones, Sr. (renovated by Rees Jones)

Par: 72

Length: 7,370 yards

Greens Fee: $225 (Resort Guest); $250 (Non-Guest)

Reservations: (808) 882-5400

Yet another course renovation by Rees Jones, this time one originally designed by his father, Robert Trent Jones, Sr. Mauna Kea course includes eye-popping 261-yard, par 3, 3rd hole, which features a tiny tee set into black lava rock. Golf Magazine recommends golfers admire the beauty, “snap a photo, then move up a tee box or two.”

4. Forest Dunes, Roscommon, Mich.

Designer: Tom Weiskopf

Par: 72

Length: 7,104 yards

Greens Fee: $80 to $125

Reservations: (866) 386-3764

Forest Dunes, located three hours northwest of Detroit, has a unique layout that meanders through dunes and pine forests. “Few public players will ever sample Northern Michigan's Alister MacKenzie classic, Crystal Downs, but Forest Dunes is the next best thing,” Golf Magazine says.

5. French Lick Springs Resort, French Lick, Ind.

Designer: Pete Dye

Par: 72

Length: 7,400 yards

Greens Fee: $350 (includes cart)

Reservations: (866) 936-9360

Pete Dye, who sketched an early design for this course on the back of a local restaurant table napkin, once said, "Golfers love punishment." And, boy, does this course mete it out: The layout included more than 8,100 hilly yards, volcano bunkers and ridge-top fairways framed by steep, rough-choked drop-offs, Golf Magazine says.

6. Southern Dunes, Maricopa, Ariz.

Designer: Lee Schmidt and Brian Curley (with Fred Couples)

Par: 72

Length: 7,243 yards

Greens Fee: $25 to $39

Reservations: (520) 568-2000

Southern Dunes started out as a private men's club but was recently transformed into a public course. Not many women will tackle the course’s 7,517-yard tips, Golf Magazine says, but now they can if they want to.

7. Tobacco Road, Sanford, N.C.

Designer: Michael Strantz

Par: 71

Length: 6,554 yards

Greens Fee: $49 to $134

Reservations: (877) 284-3762

Tobacco Road offers towering sandhills, 70 feet of elevation change, and vast bunkers and chaotically configured greens. Despite its smaller size, the course has a skyscraping slope of 150. According to Golf Magazine, Tobacco Road is “practically an amusement park.”