4th Hole-Harbour Town Golf Links, Hole 13
by Ben Hoover, PGA Professional
In a sense, we here at Harbour Town Golf Links, have 17 Hidden Gems. The iconic nature of many aspects of our course; including the famous lighthouse on our 18th hole, scenery unique only to the Coastal Lowcountry, and the dynamic design handcrafted by Pete Dye and Jack Nicklaus all help create the experience that is a round of golf at Harbour Town Golf Links.
Ask the tour professionals, focus is key to successfully managing your way around the our course. A prime example of this is our 13th hole.
On paper, the hole does not seem overly intimidating. It's a relatively short par 4, 373 yards, with a slight dogleg to the left. A large bunker protects the front and sides of one of the larger greens on the course. The hole's most prominent claim to fame is that it was designed by Alice Dye (Pete Dye's wife), reportedly sketched on the back of a cocktail napkin, and that she oversaw the construction of it herself.
However, once players step on the tee, they realize that this hole is a bit different. The large fairway is a bit deceiving in that you really need to attack this green from the right side of it. In fact, most short approach shots from the left, including portions of the left side of the fairway, may leave you blocked by one of the large live oak trees that frame the hole. And once you get close to the green, you'll notice the signature Dye railroad ties that encompass almost half of this green.
The green itself is large and Y-shaped; which introduces some unique and challenging hole locations. The famous "Sunday placement" here is on the finger of the green that stretches into the large bunker in front. More than a few players have underestimated the depth of this bunker and it's not uncommon to be left with practically no chance to salvage a decent score.
But the design, the beauty, and the challenge, only tell part of the story of why our 13th is so special. Golf is a game of making memories and the 13th hole here will provide every golfer with as memorable a hole as you'll find anywhere. How many times have you heard (or said), "I'd love to try that one again" after putting out. We hear it all the time when golfers give accounts of their experiences on the 13th.
While we may not consider the 13th hole entirely "Hidden", we're very proud to state, it is most certainly a "Gem".
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