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Sean_A

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Mayo & Sligo: Carne New
« on: June 24, 2008, 10:04:02 AM »
It seems odd, but I don't believe I have seen a load of pix from Carne.  This is perhaps Hackett's purest design and the club seems to be doing its all to keep the original 18 in tact with the construction of the new 9. Having seen the new 9, I am inclined to agree.  A combination of Engh's new 9 and Hackett's back 9 may be a touch too much.  As it is, Hackett's design is slightly ott though it may be through no fault of his own.  Cash was tight and little land was moved in the creation of this course. 

I will start off by saying that Carne was right near the top of my favourite places to play.  I am sure it still isn't far off this mark, but I came away a bit less enchanted on this trip.  I dearly wish some land would have been shoved about to create a bit more forgiving of a course in places. 

Carne starts off not too dissimilar to Brora with a short, right bending hole.  By now folks should notice that these courses seem a bit brown for this time of year.  I know Carne was running very quickly.

#2 is a shortish par 3 over a bunker/dip.  Downwind its very difficult to hold the green.  #3 turns back on the 2nd and has one of the best greens on the course. 


A closer look at the green.


The 4th is a mediocre par 5 followed by a devilish par 4.  The hole location for #5 is in a brutal spot where nothing but a well judged kick up will get close to the hole.


The next hole bends gently to the left just before the green.  Hacket cleverly used the dunes a load rather than build bunkers.  The following hole, #7, is an uphill par 3 with a shelf green.  Its not a particularly good hole and I wonder why Hacket decided upon this rather than perhaps using the top of the dune for a larger green.  #8 is a legger round the left and down the hill to a semi punchbowl green.  Below is a look at the approach to #8 if one hits a big drive.

 
My favourite hole on the front was the last.  A rising drivable par 4 protected by a large hollow covering the right side of the fairway. 


As with most of the holes at Carne and #10 isn't any different, the player has the option of playing safely to an area he can see, or going deep and blind. Now it starts to get a bit crazy.  Its best to stick the driver in the bag and go with hitting to spots you can see.  The 11th goes down, legs right then heads back up a hill.  One of the things Hacket definitely requires of the player is to choose between flying the ball or bumping it up.  Of course deciding which is best is often determined by the wind and firmness of the ground. 

Its a shame that 11 and 12 fall back to back.  These two holes are ok in and of themselves, but don't work well back to back.  The 12th goes down and turns left back up the hill to a large shelf green.  Below is the view from the tee. 


#13 is a wonderful par 5 and a bit of respite from the funk.  The hole can be reached in two, but going for it is packed with danger.  One can see how tight oob is down the right.  After laying up this is what remains.


I like wee par 3s and 14 is a terrific example of one.  As is par for the course, you can fly one or kick it up.


Now you have to get ready for the Carne finish.  All one can do is hope the score is already made.  The 15th is a brute straight up the hill.  Not much has been mentioned about the terrain, but Carne has some of the harshest terrain I have ever seen.  There are only a few holes on the course without something dramatic going on with the land.  #16 played as a flat 5 iron downhill into a gale par 3.  Very odd having to try to keep the ball down from such an elevated position.


The 17th could well be the best hole on the course.  There is a hidden hollow on the left which pinches the fairway far more than one would guess.  Driver is certainly a dangerous option here.  Below is a look at the approach with the trouble left on the other side of the fairway not shown and the trouble right of the green hidden. 


18 is a brutish par 5.  A long drive sets up for going at the green in two, but its blind over what has to be a 40 foot drop in the fairway. 


As I say, I think my opinion of Carne has dropped a wee bit.  Parts of the property are just too wild for golf and could be improved by the hand of man.  Another aspect the dunes cause is longish walks between greens and tees.  Its difficult to avoid, but it does wear on ya after climbing and reclimbing hills.  Still, Carne is a wild ride and for the most part gets it right.  The course certainly deserves a 1*, but the ropey conditioning holds back the enjoyment factor.  2008

Enniscrone
http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,35273.0.html

Rosses Point
http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,35264.msg711429.html#msg711429

Strandhill
http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,35261.msg711110.html#msg711110

Ciao 
« Last Edit: June 22, 2018, 05:06:35 AM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

Sean Leary

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2008, 11:39:10 AM »
I only played it once, so it was hard to get a really good sense of the course. I enjoyed the front but the back was too much for me. Good point about 11 and 12 being back to back.

One of this things I wondered was whether it was routed to make sure there was an ocean view, hence the crazy holes at 11 and 12. Obviously the terrain on the back is incredibly wild, and in 1 visit, I certainly do not know what kind of options there were in the routing. Obviously the Engh nine's land could have been part of the routing.

Overall, glad I went there, but wouldn't go back.

Andy Hughes

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Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne (not quite finished)
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2008, 11:46:49 AM »
Sean, do you see any kinship between Carne and Pennard?

(and thanks, as always, for the write-ups)
"Perhaps I'm incorrect..."--P. Mucci 6/7/2007

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne (not quite finished)
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2008, 12:31:52 PM »
Sean, do you see any kinship between Carne and Pennard?

(and thanks, as always, for the write-ups)

Andy

Yes, I do.  Though I think Pennard is less demanding in terms of accuracy and walking.  If it isn't too wild a suggestion, Carne is sort of Pennard on streroids.  The two are in the same class, but I much prefer Pennard.

Ciao
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

Tommy Williamsen

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Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2008, 12:44:15 PM »
Sean, is the grass brown or non-existent?
Tom Williamsen
Where there is no love, put love; there you will find love.
St. John of the Cross

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2008, 03:09:47 PM »
Sean, is the grass brown or non-existent?


Tommy

The grass is brown.  The entire course very firm and felt hard as in compacted.  I know the greens were diabolical and I am not sure how they came to be in that state.  Normally I don't worry about this stuff, but these were exceptionally poor.

Ciao
« Last Edit: June 24, 2008, 03:50:02 PM by Sean Arble »
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

Jim Nugent

Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2008, 03:16:22 PM »
What work is Jim Engh doing at Carne? 

Would be great to see some posts from him, too. 

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2008, 03:53:06 PM »
What work is Jim Engh doing at Carne? 

Would be great to see some posts from him, too. 

Jim

Engh routed 9 new holes which may have been originally planned to join the Hackett back 9 for the 18 holer with the Hackett front 9 being a 9 holer.  I think the project has stalled while a solution to try and keep the original 18 intact is worked out.  I think there is a good routing on the table, but it involves the re-numbering of the Hackett hoels and the club seems reluctant to do this. 

Ciao
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

Bill_McBride

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Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2008, 04:18:28 PM »
Sean, it looks like there are all sorts of fun ground game approach shots that can be played off the dune shoulders, almost like billiards!  You didn't see much of that at Pennard that I can recall.  As firm and brown as it appears, those shots must have been really interesting!

Rich Goodale

Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2008, 04:29:07 PM »
Bill

I walked the course a month ago, carrying 3 balls in my pocket, and you are right about the billards effect.  On the 8th I stood at the 100 yard mark (top of a stepp hill down to the green) and tried to see if I could underhand "Irish Road Bowl" a ProV1 to the green.  I semi-shanked the first attempt but it made it to the right greenside bunker.  My second effort finished about 7 feet right of the pin.  I could have stood there with a sandwedge for days without getting the ball so close.  And the course was relatively soft back in May.....

Sean

Great pics again, and I mostly agree with your words too!

Rich

mike_malone

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #10 on: June 25, 2008, 10:34:02 AM »
 The walks between greens and tees is a major drawback here. Just the walks during the play of the dunes holes is enough of a challenge.
AKA Mayday

Mike_Trenham

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Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2008, 11:13:55 PM »
Personally I like having holes 11 and 12 in sequence.  My thinking is that 11 is a fade tee shot and 12 requires a draw.  I played it a year ago with a member of Rolling Green who said RG#12 is one of his favorite holes yet he hated Carne#11, funny thing was I thought the holes were very similar.

I have pictures of Carne #8, 11 & 16 in my office, they remind me why I work so many hours.
Proud member of a Doak 3.

mike_malone

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #12 on: June 27, 2008, 09:27:44 AM »
 Mike,

   I must have missed the dunes at Rolling Green. I guess I need to play it more often ;D
AKA Mayday

Andy Levett

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #13 on: June 27, 2008, 05:16:48 PM »
It’s funny, Carne still looks better than Enniscrone to me from your pics – the scale of the undulations through the green and the lay of the land putting surfaces just tick all the boxes.

But they’re only pics and your judgment is excellent in these things, Sean, so if Enniscrone is the Rihcelin 2*  I’ll have to find a way to get there during family time in Belmullet in August (already got ‘before they’re up’ Carne tee-times).

OT (but I’ll ask here rather than an IM as your answers may be of interest to others) did you try any good/bad restaurants/food pubs/music pubs in or around Belmullet, and Strandhill, where we’re also staying?

Loved the whole Mayo and Sligo series – will give Strandhill a go but reluctantly skip Rosses Point at that price.

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #14 on: June 27, 2008, 05:55:13 PM »
It’s funny, Carne still looks better than Enniscrone to me from your pics – the scale of the undulations through the green and the lay of the land putting surfaces just tick all the boxes.

But they’re only pics and your judgment is excellent in these things, Sean, so if Enniscrone is the Rihcelin 2*  I’ll have to find a way to get there during family time in Belmullet in August (already got ‘before they’re up’ Carne tee-times).

OT (but I’ll ask here rather than an IM as your answers may be of interest to others) did you try any good/bad restaurants/food pubs/music pubs in or around Belmullet, and Strandhill, where we’re also staying?

Loved the whole Mayo and Sligo series – will give Strandhill a go but reluctantly skip Rosses Point at that price.


Andy

Belmullet is small place.  However, and you would never guess it, The Western Strands Hotel has very fine steaks.  We also ate a fish pub in town on the road back to Sligo (its sort of a purple/blue colour), it was very good and they had music on Sundays. 

In Sligo we had a good Indian at Popodums.  There is a wonderful pub on the same street (O'Connell St).  I don't recall the name, but its only 1 minute down the road on the right (past the pub with the outdoor seating).  There was music there on Saturday night.  There is another good pub on the river (don't recall the name) - the next road past O'Connell St.  Its red and had a fantastic singer on there.  Everything from Steve Miller to Pink Floyd to Johnny Cash.  Sorry I don't have specifics of road names etc.  These places are too small to bother with such details. 

We didn't hang around Strandhill, but I didn't notice any town of consequence. 

While I like Enniscrone more than Carne, Carne is plenty good enough to interest you for a few days if it isn't convenient to get to Enniscrone.  As I say, Carne is more old fashioned even though its modern.  Its a wonderful course and you will need at least two games to get a grip.

Ciao
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

Adam Russell

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #15 on: June 27, 2008, 11:12:48 PM »
To Tom Doak-

The third pic from the top of #2's green reminds me of someplace I'd seen in the states...inspiration, perhaps?  ;)
“The only way that I could figure they could improve upon Coca-Cola, one of life's most delightful elixirs, which studies prove will heal the sick and occasionally raise the dead, is to put rum or bourbon in it.” -Lewis Grizzard

Andy Levett

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2008, 06:43:27 PM »
Andy

Belmullet is small place.  However, and you would never guess it, The Western Strands Hotel has very fine steaks.  We also ate a fish pub in town on the road back to Sligo (its sort of a purple/blue colour), it was very good and they had music on Sundays. 

In Sligo we had a good Indian at Popodums.  There is a wonderful pub on the same street (O'Connell St).  I don't recall the name, but its only 1 minute down the road on the right (past the pub with the outdoor seating).  There was music there on Saturday night.  There is another good pub on the river (don't recall the name) - the next road past O'Connell St.  Its red and had a fantastic singer on there.  Everything from Steve Miller to Pink Floyd to Johnny Cash.  Sorry I don't have specifics of road names etc.  These places are too small to bother with such details. 

We didn't hang around Strandhill, but I didn't notice any town of consequence. 

While I like Enniscrone more than Carne, Carne is plenty good enough to interest you for a few days if it isn't convenient to get to Enniscrone.  As I say, Carne is more old fashioned even though its modern.  Its a wonderful course and you will need at least two games to get a grip.

Ciao
Excellent advice, which I will print off and cherish. Thank you.

Mike Sweeney

Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #17 on: June 28, 2008, 08:06:48 PM »
On the back 9 there are a few spots where I wondered why Eddie did not incorprate the ocean more than he did at Carne.

Driving from Enniscrone to Carne gives one the feeling of driving back to NYC/Boston. It is remote for those that love remote golf.

The greens and greensites are not world class, but I really believe it is a place that needs to be seen and played at least once. I played it just the one time in 40+ MPH winds. It really was because the girl in the pro shop said "you are going to play in this wind?!

This is the real Ireland out at Carne.

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #18 on: June 29, 2008, 05:32:21 AM »
On the back 9 there are a few spots where I wondered why Eddie did not incorprate the ocean more than he did at Carne.

Driving from Enniscrone to Carne gives one the feeling of driving back to NYC/Boston. It is remote for those that love remote golf.

The greens and greensites are not world class, but I really believe it is a place that needs to be seen and played at least once. I played it just the one time in 40+ MPH winds. It really was because the girl in the pro shop said "you are going to play in this wind?!

This is the real Ireland out at Carne.

Mike

I would disagree about a great greensites.  Carne has a load of them and they are quite varied - as you would expect for lay of the land design in the dunes.  Its true the greens themselves are quite basic, but it could be that ole Eddie thought the journey from the tee to the green was adventerous enough.  Personally, I wouldn't like to see the greens tricked up too much because this could be the killer blow for an already very difficult course with any wind about. 

I will say that the one green I seriously question is the 7th.  The shelf like character of the green is too much like the 11 & 12.  Additionally, there isn't anywhere enough room to land a ball downwind for such an uphill shot.  I think he would have been better off using the top of the dune  or just accept that earth needed to be shifted about a bit more. 

I do agree that Carne has a much more remote feeling than most other Irish courses.  It hits you when road signs are in Gaelic only. 

Ciao
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

Jin Kim

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #19 on: June 29, 2008, 08:56:21 AM »
When I played this one my lone trip to Ireland in the '90s, this was my favorite course that we played (close call with RCD a close second).  We played it in a driving rain.  There was no one else on the course other than my group.  That was a long time ago so specific details about the course escape me, but I remember being awed by the scale of the dunes and how difficult the landing areas were.

Andy Levett

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #20 on: September 05, 2008, 05:00:04 PM »
I managed a couple of games at Carne last week. Routing, terrain and green sites as good as anywhere. Very impressed how playable and enjoyable it remained in a strong wind (just as well in that location) - the first four holes all go in different directions and no two succeeding holes go in the same direction. The big dunes offer a lot of protection, with greens generally sheltered a bit out of the wind, which greets you full blast on some of the tees, often on top of a dune to give you some idea where you're going.

The wind was against on the 7th both days so the last thing I was worried about was stopping the ball. Maybe mowing the grass at the back bank to fringe or green height so shots could be played to roll back would improve the hole when the wind's behind? If people are complaining Carne is a tough walk you certainly wouldn't want to put the green any higher up, that could finish some off before they reached the turn!

17th is a superb hole - and shows Eddie would move the dirt if he had to!

Such great terrain doesn't need many bunkers but you wonder if some of the few there are at Carne were added later by the members as they look a bit amateurish in placing and execution.

I thought the greens were fine in design, and condition when I visited. Condition was even better at Enniscrone but the shaping's less natural there and the extra internal green contours were a bit 'fiddly' for my taste on what is already a pretty tough golf course.

My other quibbles with Enniscrone were several long tee to green walks and some rather brutal cuts through dunes ( eg to make the 1st and 2nd greens visible). To be fair, neither Steel, nor Hackett before him, started with a blank canvas at Enniscrone, whereas Hackett had free rein at Carne.

On the other hand Enniscrone has the better par 3s, and bunkering, and the back-to-back driveable par 4s at 12 and 13 (9 and 10 pre-Steel) worked really well in different directions.

Overall, I'm going against what seems the majority view here and saying Carne is definitely the better course but would encourage anyone remotely within range to visit both and decide for yourself.

Ian_L

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne
« Reply #21 on: September 05, 2008, 07:04:27 PM »
Interesting... I am a 13 handicap, and found Carne quite playable in the strongest wind I encountered in Ireland (at 6' 7'' it can be tough to stand on those tees!).  Not quite sure, but I really loved 11, although 12 was a bit tough for me since I only played it once.  I thought the huge dunes on the back 9 provided for interesting doglegs and par 3's, but it would have been nice if they were cut farther up (I don't know if a mower could do that).  When I get back home, I'll post the few pictures I have.

What did you all think of the last par 3?  It's nice an open but can be treacherous in the wind since it's downhill.

I thought a couple of the flat holes at Enniscrone (finishing off the front nine and starting the back nine) weren't as good as Carne's flatter front nine, but I think Enniscrone's dune holes are slightly superior.  I especially liked 13 at Enniscrone, with the backstop for those who took the safer route.

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Mayo & Sligo: Carne New
« Reply #22 on: September 05, 2008, 08:02:02 PM »
I managed a couple of games at Carne last week. Routing, terrain and green sites as good as anywhere. Very impressed how playable and enjoyable it remained in a strong wind (just as well in that location) - the first four holes all go in different directions and no two succeeding holes go in the same direction. The big dunes offer a lot of protection, with greens generally sheltered a bit out of the wind, which greets you full blast on some of the tees, often on top of a dune to give you some idea where you're going.

The wind was against on the 7th both days so the last thing I was worried about was stopping the ball. Maybe mowing the grass at the back bank to fringe or green height so shots could be played to roll back would improve the hole when the wind's behind? If people are complaining Carne is a tough walk you certainly wouldn't want to put the green any higher up, that could finish some off before they reached the turn!

17th is a superb hole - and shows Eddie would move the dirt if he had to!

Such great terrain doesn't need many bunkers but you wonder if some of the few there are at Carne were added later by the members as they look a bit amateurish in placing and execution.

I thought the greens were fine in design, and condition when I visited. Condition was even better at Enniscrone but the shaping's less natural there and the extra internal green contours were a bit 'fiddly' for my taste on what is already a pretty tough golf course.

My other quibbles with Enniscrone were several long tee to green walks and some rather brutal cuts through dunes ( eg to make the 1st and 2nd greens visible). To be fair, neither Steel, nor Hackett before him, started with a blank canvas at Enniscrone, whereas Hackett had free rein at Carne.

On the other hand Enniscrone has the better par 3s, and bunkering, and the back-to-back driveable par 4s at 12 and 13 (9 and 10 pre-Steel) worked really well in different directions.

Overall, I'm going against what seems the majority view here and saying Carne is definitely the better course but would encourage anyone remotely within range to visit both and decide for yourself.


Andy

I can't disagree with your points - especially the long tee to green walks.  After my initial visit I preferred Carne to Enniscrone, but flipped this time around.  Strangely, one of the main reasons for switching my preference was down to the better variety of holes at Enniscrone.  I liked most of the flatter holes and I think #5 is a corker.  I spose one other big reason for the change of heart was the dramatic differences in green quality.  For me, Enniscrone's had much more interest than Carne's without being ott.  Finally, and most unusually for me, I think for the most part Enniscrone is quite successful in how the hand of man is integrated with nature.  IMO, Carne could have used a bit more intervention from an archie to help create diversity and distinction between the holes.  For instance, the 3rd green is terrific in its angle and contours, but this sort of boldness really isn't attempted on many of the other greens. 

The two courses really make for a fascinating study in architectural styles especially given that in their current forms, they are straight contemporaries.

Ian, I too found Carne playable in the wind, but I often found myself hitting the same sorts of shots.  Perhaps its because so many greens are on plateaus. 

Ciao
« Last Edit: September 11, 2016, 08:08:33 PM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

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