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mike_malone

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Iím surprised by the ranking of Essex County CC.
« on: May 24, 2022, 08:21:58 AM »
 I played Essex County CC in New Jersey yesterday and was a little surprised at its status in Jersey golf.


  It sits in among Hollywood, Hidden Creek, and Plainfield which I also have played as highly rated. I think there is much more interest from tee to green at the others than ECCC but the greens there are outrageous.


Four courses in Philly area that are regarded similarly are Aronimink, Cricket, Stonewall, and Lancaster. I find the balance throughout of the Philly quartet to be slightly better than the New Jersey list.


Outrageous greens have an overwhelming impact on many golfers.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2022, 09:34:42 PM by mike_malone »
AKA Mayday

David_Madison

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We played there last week and I was greatly impressed, and frankly surprised by its not being included in the discussion of the state's top courses. While there might not be as much "stuff" to contend with off the tees, the balance felt right as there's a pretty serious demand on the approach shots because of the greens and surrounds. The course sits softly on a wonderfully rolling site, and because the land itself is so good I don't think there is that much of a need to add a whole lot. The other thing I appreciated was the availability of the ground game there to enable recoveries and also so that average and weaker players could get shots onto the greens, but the greens had more than enough going on to reward strong, accurate aerial play into them as well.

mike_malone

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David,


 I did appreciate the ground game options but found so many of the fairway bunkers to be irrelevant because they were parallel to play. One hole in particular (12?) had a couple of bunkers on the right in the landing area reminiscent of 18 at Huntingdon Valley. But HVCCís are set at an angle where you take them on. Here they just collected a wayward tee shot.


I canít recall choosing an angle off the tee which happens frequently at Flynns.
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David_Madison

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Mike,


I don't disagree with your point about the fairway bunkers. My sense was that there wasn't a whole lot going on off the tee except that being in the fairway was a lot better than being in the rough, and that angles often mattered given the greens and surrounds as otherwise you could go through the round with a bunch of just "okay" approach shots and then make a ton of bogeys after missing endless 5' - 10' par putts. I found the overall vibe of the course to be very interesting -- a big, strong rolling site that reminded me of Philly Cricket's (especially as they both underwent massive tree removal programs), with classic deep and sharp Banks bunkering (#15, the par 3 for instance) yet the course otherwise seemed to sit very softly and naturally on the site, which is something that I really like.


But something to consider in light of your fairway bunker comment - I was never in a green side bunker. I don't know if that was just my ball striking, or are the bunkers really not all that much in play? Probably need to play a few rounds to really understand that one.


And while this isn't something that you'd typically consider when evaluating and distinguishing among top courses, I'm close to a 0 handicap and thought the course was totally engaging and fun, while my wife who more typically shoots 95 - 110 found the course to be totally accessible and enjoyable as well. Clearly a good course to hold serious competitions on, yet very playable for pretty much any level of player.

mike_malone

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Maybe the three designers there created some cognitive dissonance for me.


I have come up with a new rating idea. ď Would we miss this course? 1)not at all. 2) some. 3) a lot. 4) Immensely!!


I would say 2 for ECCC.




I developed this rating last week when I played a 1. If it never existed it would not matter.


 
« Last Edit: May 24, 2022, 09:47:13 PM by mike_malone »
AKA Mayday

mike_malone

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Re: Iím surprised by the ranking of Essex County CC.
« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2022, 09:36:01 PM »
Reading that it has the best back nine in New Jersey. Thatís a joke , right?
AKA Mayday

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