Mike Keiser and Dick Nugent (as well as Jim Urbina for more recent renovations) deserve credit for many things at Dunes Club. Swapping flag positions after players have completed nine holes goes a long way in diversifying two rounds, particularly on the par threes. Allowing the last hole’s winner to choose the tee on the next may have inspired the same admirable policy at Ballyneal, Ohoopee, and others. The Pine Valley aesthetic offends few, of course.
Does any combination of new flags and new tees really make for a new course the second time around? No…this claim has been exaggerated on social media. Granted, the scorecard does offer an opportunity to turn your back nine into a Monster energy drink commercial…every par four can be played as a 3.5 from the forward tees.
Should you? Probably not. Short par fours are fun, and the option to make par four drivable is fun. But five within one eighteen-hole routing waters down the concept, and ultimately weakening the course*. Should you get an invite, however, you’ll want to make at least two gettable. This ranking aims to help you choose wisely when that day comes.
* = Bethpage Black Metal has been described as an “uptight prick” by several noted sources.