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Kevin Lynch

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #25 on: August 08, 2014, 02:10:53 PM »
JNC, I have always considered PB Dye well beyond Little Bennett. Just more creative, more interesting, with more fun holes.  I tried to tell KL to play PB Dye instead of LB but he always acts like he knows better than me ;)

Not sure why I chose LB over PB Dye, so I'll blame DiNegris for saying something like "Hughes doesn't have a clue."

I think Shulman & Tommy gave their positive votes to LB with Tommy not being too fond of PBD, so that may have been the difference. 

Bill Gayne

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #26 on: August 08, 2014, 07:18:18 PM »
I recently played Mattaponi Springs which is south of Fredericksburg and the best I have seen in what I would consider to be the DC area. Zoysia grass fairways were super easy to hit from and the greens were really smooth although not that interesting.  The only issue with conditioning were the bunkers as they were not well raked when I played.   Musket Ridge is also pretty good.

Jerry,
I agree it's the best public - maybe in the state - but I think you're stretching the definition of DC area. I played the course just after it opened and again a couple years later. The zoysia had held up well and I'm glad to hear that continues.

Mattaponi Springs is very good but I consider Spring Creek ahead of it. Excluding all resort courses from the definition of public.

J Sadowsky

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #27 on: August 09, 2014, 03:14:54 PM »
The three publics with the best greens, IMHO, are Lake P., Glenn Dale, and Laurel Hill, though I played Lake Presidential earlier this year and the greens were going too slow to get its useful effects.


Scott Weersing

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #28 on: August 14, 2014, 04:48:53 AM »

I have only played Beechtree and Cannon Ridge in the DC area.

Cannon Ridge is/was very good with a good routing and some memorable holes.

The website said they are converting their greens to bermuda, http://www.golfcannonridge.com

Has anyone played here with the new greens?

JBovay

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #29 on: December 07, 2014, 02:24:07 PM »
I'll be spending much of the next month in downtown DC, and it looks like I'll have a few days to get out and play golf.

I'm not a fan of water-lined courses or ribbon fairways cut through woods.  I enjoy elevation changes, sloping fairways and quirk, so which of the above group may fit best?

My golf game and tastes are similar to Kevin's, and the DC contingent did a pretty good job responding to his original post... but I don't see any glowing, must-play recommendations. Would it be worth my while to drive 2-3 hours to play courses like Royal New Kent (Strantz), Glen Mills in Philly (Bobby Weed, whose courses I've really enjoyed), Bedford Springs, PA (Ross/AWT), or Atlantic City (Park/Toomey-Flynn/Doak)? Or would making a trip like that mean I'm missing something really good in the DC suburbs?

Would be happy to have some company, so if anyone's looking for a game, let me know! Thanks!

JB

Kevin Lynch

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #30 on: December 07, 2014, 09:00:14 PM »
JB -

I don't have enough exposure to give a full comparison of all courses, but among those I played, Little Bennett is > Worthington Manor by far.  I appreciated Laurel Hill, but on a heart vs head test, Little Bennett is much more fun (but Laurel was > Worthington, IMO).  I think Andy mentioned that LB is in the Ballyhack neighborhood for quirk, which gave me some faith in heading there.  In terms of value, LB is in a league of its own (I think I payed ~$40, which included breakfast and lunch & a bucket of balls).  Our esteemed George Cup Champ, Tommy Williamsen also put LB in the fun camp - so I think you can't go wrong there.

While I haven't been to PB Dye, both Andy Hughes and JNC Lyon approved of those over Little Bennett, so that means something to me.  I trust JNC's judgment as a whole, and Andy is a huge fan of Ballyhack, and I trust his insight as well.  I think you'd be well served with that selection as well. 

If you're looking for people to play with, definitely send PMs to the Andys (Shulman / Hughes) and always keep Chris DeNigris in mind.  He traveled down from Harrisburg to join up with me, and is always game to travel for a decent round of golf & socializing.

Don't know much else about the offerings in range of DC, but Royal New Kent is also worth seeing if you're going to drive a little. While not Strantz's best, it is worth seeing.

JNC Lyon

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #31 on: December 07, 2014, 09:34:15 PM »
JB:

If you drive up to Philly for public golf in the off-season, don't make Glen Mills your only stop. There is plenty of fun public golf up in the Philadelphia area, but Glen Mills would be far from my first choice. I preferred the likes of Lederach, Inniscrone, Paxon Hollow, and Jeffersonville. I know others will disagree with me there, but I thought Glen Mills had a few too many bad holes that offset its finer moments. An AC trip could be fun as well--I'm a big fan of the area inland from Atlantic City. The public courses around there are plenty of fun, and you can also get a few GCAers to join you from Philly.

If you don't feel like driving the extra hours, PB Dye and Little Bennett are both neat courses that are worth the 45-minute drive out 270. Little Bennett is built on a severe piece of property that yields some dramatic golf and a great set of par fives. PB Dye has wild greens throughout, and I really enjoyed the bunkering on holes 6 and 16. Between both courses you will notice a similar 9-18-side-by-side finish, but the one at PB Dye has a goofy water feature that makes each nine finish with a thud. Beyond that, PB Dye is very solid, and I would give it a slight edge over LB if you need to pick one.
"That's why Oscar can't see that!" - Philip E. "Timmy" Thomas

Jon Cavalier

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #32 on: December 08, 2014, 01:00:50 AM »
I'll be spending much of the next month in downtown DC, and it looks like I'll have a few days to get out and play golf.

I'm not a fan of water-lined courses or ribbon fairways cut through woods.  I enjoy elevation changes, sloping fairways and quirk, so which of the above group may fit best?

My golf game and tastes are similar to Kevin's, and the DC contingent did a pretty good job responding to his original post... but I don't see any glowing, must-play recommendations. Would it be worth my while to drive 2-3 hours to play courses like Royal New Kent (Strantz), Glen Mills in Philly (Bobby Weed, whose courses I've really enjoyed), Bedford Springs, PA (Ross/AWT), or Atlantic City (Park/Toomey-Flynn/Doak)? Or would making a trip like that mean I'm missing something really good in the DC suburbs?

Would be happy to have some company, so if anyone's looking for a game, let me know! Thanks!

JB

JB:

I've played most of the courses discussed above (both DC and Philly area - I live in Philly).

Around DC, PB Dye, Whiskey Creek, Raspberry Falls and even Maryland National are worth a look based your description of what you like. Stonewall is a very pretty course with some fun holes and nice lake views. Further south, Mattaponi and Spring Creek are both really good, but they're a good hike from DC. If you're a Nicklaus fan, Potomac Shores isn't bad (although a bit pricey).

On the Strantz side - I really liked Royal New Kent, and based on your preferences, it seems right up your alley. I thought it was a fun place with some unique (and a few goofy) holes. I do not recommend Tradition at Stonehouse (a Strantz further south in VA). I thought it was more goofy and contrived, and that the negatives far outweighed the positives. Stonehouse has been the only Strantz course I didn't like.

Up here around Pbilly. I'm a big fan of Glen Mills - if you like Bobby Weed, you'll dig this course. Atlantic City CC is excellent and certainly worth a play if youre in the area. I really enjoyed Bedford too, but it is most emphatically not in the Philly area - it's 3 hours away, and it's much closer to Pittsburgh than Philly - but it's an excellent course.

Much as I like the PA/NJ options that you've listed, I don't think they're so much better than the DC area offerings to make a special 2.5 hour drive up. I'd just stay and play down there, unless you were coming up this way for other reasons or more than one day. And of course, if you do make it up this way, drop me a line.
« Last Edit: December 08, 2014, 01:04:34 AM by Jon Cavalier »
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JBovay

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #33 on: December 09, 2014, 06:57:43 AM »
Thanks for the comments, guys.

Kevin: I'm glad to know there are at least two courses within an hour of DC that are definitively better than Worthington Manor. Not that WM's a bad course, but it's a long way from DC for what you get.

JNC and Jon: appreciate the additional recommendations on the Philly courses. One of the guys at the George Cup mentioned Glen Mills to me, and I looked it up and was intrigued by Bausch's photo album. I haven't heard of several other courses you both mention in the Philly area, and will look them up.

Much as I like the PA/NJ options that you've listed, I don't think they're so much better than the DC area offerings to make a special 2.5 hour drive up.

I get that, and appreciate that perspective, Jon.

And of course, if you do make it up this way, drop me a line.

I'd love to play with you someday, Jon, and see how you make those captivating photos. So, by the same token, if you're looking for an additional playing partner the next time you're in southern New England, let me know.

JB

JNC Lyon

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #34 on: December 09, 2014, 11:44:24 PM »
JB,

http://myphillygolf.com/gallery.asp

This has all the photos you need for the Philly area courses. Find a couple that you like, pick a day for a road trip, and post a thread here to see if you can get a couple of GCAers to join you. That's a Golf Club Atlas adventure at its best.
"That's why Oscar can't see that!" - Philip E. "Timmy" Thomas

Andy Hughes

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #35 on: December 11, 2014, 12:29:51 PM »
"..Glenn Dale.."

!!  ;)
"Perhaps I'm incorrect..."--P. Mucci 6/7/2007

Andy Hughes

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #36 on: December 11, 2014, 12:32:32 PM »
"Not sure why I chose LB over PB Dye, so I'll blame DiNegris for saying something like "Hughes doesn't have a clue.""

About time Chris was right about something.


Kevin, did you end up playing Rock Creek?  Cirba and I are the only people I know who would admit a. having played the course and b. actually liking some of the holes.
You are one of the very few people I would even mention RC to.
"Perhaps I'm incorrect..."--P. Mucci 6/7/2007

Kevin Lynch

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #37 on: December 11, 2014, 01:45:48 PM »
"Not sure why I chose LB over PB Dye, so I'll blame DiNegris for saying something like "Hughes doesn't have a clue.""

About time Chris was right about something.


Kevin, did you end up playing Rock Creek?  Cirba and I are the only people I know who would admit a. having played the course and b. actually liking some of the holes.
You are one of the very few people I would even mention RC to.


No - I heeded your threat about playing it without you (and feel special for being one of the "very few").   I trust your judgement, so I'll probably wait for a joint opportunity before I check out RC.


I forgot to mention Glenn Dale (as recommended by Andy).  GD has some neat holes, and if you haven't played any Cobb, it's worth seeing (some of the greens are insanely sloped).  But I wouldn't call it a "must play" (some poor tree planting / management has obscured some really good holes).

Andy Hughes

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #38 on: December 11, 2014, 04:21:31 PM »
"I forgot to mention Glenn Dale (as recommended by Andy).  GD has some neat holes, and if you haven't played any Cobb, it's worth seeing (some of the greens are insanely sloped).  But I wouldn't call it a "must play" (some poor tree planting / management has obscured some really good holes)."

Yep  >:(  exactly right.
"Perhaps I'm incorrect..."--P. Mucci 6/7/2007

Andy Shulman

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #39 on: December 12, 2014, 01:14:08 AM »
John - Bedford Springs is definitely worth the drive, but it probably makes sense to wait until spring to give it a try, as it's a bit cooler up there than it is in DC.  Given the winter golf cost/benefit quotient, I'd say that the same is true for any long trips other than to someplace like Pinehurst or Golden Horseshoe in Williamsburg.  In the meantime, take advantage of winter rates at the courses mentioned by others that are within an hour's drive of the city: Laurel Hill if you like a challenge, Little Bennet or P.B. Dye for some quirk and my unmentioned personal favorite, Augustine in Stafford County, which has numerous excellent holes.

Mike Sweeney

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #40 on: March 23, 2017, 08:28:23 PM »
We will be in Annapolis/DC for Easter. With the realities of life, which is preferred:

East Potomac vs Rock Creek? My sister-in-law is in Bethesda.


Thanks
« Last Edit: March 24, 2017, 07:33:52 AM by Mike Sweeney »
"One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If weve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. Were no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us."

Dr. Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

Craig Disher

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #41 on: March 23, 2017, 11:04:04 PM »
We will be in Annapolis/DC for Easter. With the realities of life, which would be preferred?

East Potomac vs Rock Creek? My sister-in-law is in Bethesda.


Thanks

For convenience, Rock Creek. Both are rough. RC has a little Flynn left but is usually in worse shape. Sligo Creek is a 9-holer closer to Bethesda and probably has more grass. Close to Bethesda in Potomac is Falls Road which would certainly be in better condition.

Stephen Northrup

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #42 on: March 24, 2017, 12:53:57 AM »
depending on where you are in Bethesda, University of Maryland GC might be an good option too

Jerry Kluger

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #43 on: March 24, 2017, 06:40:29 AM »
Mike: I lived in Bethesda for a long time and you can jump on 270 and get to PB Dye probably faster than getting to some of the courses in the city and at least there is some good architecture and certainly better conditioning.

Mike Sweeney

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #44 on: March 24, 2017, 07:35:19 AM »
Sligo Creek is a 9-holer closer to Bethesda and probably has more grass.


This is a nice call as time will be tight.


Thanks everyone.
"One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If weve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. Were no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us."

Dr. Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

Ira Fishman

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #45 on: March 24, 2017, 08:37:26 AM »
Suggest looking at Falls Road which is very convenient to Bethesda.

JBovay

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Re: Washington DC Public Suggestions / Follow-up?
« Reply #46 on: March 27, 2017, 08:28:49 AM »
depending on where you are in Bethesda, University of Maryland GC might be an good option too


The University of Maryland GC was probably my most pleasant surprise of 2016. It's a pretty, wooded, gently hilly setting without any views of housing, buildings, or roads except on the 9th hole (as far as I can recall). The greens are well designed and were well conditioned, and there is plenty of variety in terms of length and shape of holes. It's plenty wide, and there were a number of good holes (3-4-6 and 13-17 stood out to me). It's reasonably accessible via Metro (you can walk across campus or take an Uber from the station), affordable, and you might have interesting playing partners: I played with a retired Secret Service agent and a U Chicago-educated lawyer. In short, I recommend it if you have time for a full 18.

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