I think the 18th green is very much in character....the greens are loaded with big bold contours. I don't mind the water aspect as much as you...18 isn't my favourite hole, but it does add spice to the round.KINGSBARNS TOUR CONT
We now make the long
walk to the three-shot 12th tee. On the way there is a full on view of the 15th which is the transition hole between the property sections. I wasn't overly enamoured with the these three isolated holes and as a group they struck me as quite hit and miss. I spose the 12th could be considered one of the two signature holes. The hole is very pretty and the green being turned against play offers a load of difficult hole locations, but I think this hole works best downwind. Into the wind its a bit of a slog and perhaps the influence of water is too similar to the par 5 third.
Another large green, this one angled against the fairway.
However, the 13th is cracking short hole. A change of pace, the green is postage stamp tiny and reminiscent of what might be seen at Dornoch.
14 struck me as the least interesting hole on the course. Onto the other signature hole, the already inspected Rocky Ness, a small point jutting into the North Sea. This is one hole where it pays to choose one's club conservatively; there is plenty of room to the rear of the green.
16 takes us fully back to the main section of the property with a straight forward par 5....except for the hidden burn to the right and rear of the green. I believe this pocket of land was used for a course long ago. These views are from the 9th fairway.
Similar to 16, the 17th legs right predictably toward the sea, but the extreme uphill nature of the approach is what really defines this excellent hole. The 16th green is in the foreground.
After a somewhat blind, uphill drive, the controversial 18th is fully revealed. When moving dirt to build the 18th the bridge and Cundie Burn were discovered and rightly included in the design. Below is a look at the hole from the house.
That then ends the round that is Kingsbarns. To be quite frank, it is difficult to find fault. While still a bit scratchy due to the time of year, conditions were more than acceptable. The design is well balanced with quite wide playing corridors, scads of opportunities to play low, running shots and yet a handful of heroic shots on offer; a few of which are truly penal. There are a few candidates for All Scotland holes such as 4-6 and 13, though I must admit that I thought the top notch holes might be a bigger handful given the world wide accolades. For many golfers the beauty of Kingsbarns can be entrancing and rightfully so. For well travelled golfers, once enough top class courses are played, it is easy not to see what is on offer when looking at a course. Many people may find themselves unwittingly looking for something rather than looking at something. If the golfer simply focuses on what Kingsbarns is rather than what it may lack, it is hard to fathom that most wouldn't come to the conclusion that Kingsbarns is a very great course. 1* 2016