If you watched The Players Championship this past week at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., you probably saw the carnage at the infamous 17th hole island green on Saturday. According to the local News4Jax TV, there were 29 balls in the water in the 6 hours and 30 minutes of play Saturday, after only four water balls over some 12 hours of play the previous two days. With winds gusting at times to nearly 40 mph, players had a tough time navigating the 146-yard hole.
While we’re all familiar with the 17th hole at TPC Sawgrass, we decided to track down a few more memorable island greens in golf. Here are 5 of our favorites.
Ponte Vedra Inn & Club, Ocean Course, Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
9th Hole, 157 yards, par 3
The 9th hole at Ponte Vedra Inn & Club was designed by Herbert Strong in 1928 and was the inspiration for the creation of the famous par-3 17th at nearby Sawgrass. A generous bailout area on this hole makes it less intimidating than TPC Sawgrass, but it’s still a gem of a hole. The course was selected to host the 1939 Ryder Cup which wasn’t played because of the onset of WWII.
Coeur d’Alene Resort, Cour d’Alene, Idaho
14th hole, 218 yards, par 3
Billed as the world’s only floating island green, this unique hole is only reachable by a six-passenger boat called the “Putter.” If you land on the green and two-putt, you earn a certificate on the ride back to shore. Another cool feature of this green is that it is moved back and forth remotely by the resort each day.
Apple Tree Resort, Yakima, Wash.
17th Hole, 180 yards, par 3
How cool is this? Apple Tree Resort was built on a Washington Delicious apple orchard. When you get to the signature par-3 17th, you’ll be treated to an island green in the shape of an apple. The back-left bunker resembles a leaf, and the “stem” is a 50-foot walking bridge connecting the green to dry land.
Punta Mita Pacifico Golf Course, Punta Mita, Mexico
Hole 3B, 194 yards, par 3
Best known as the “Tail of the Whale,” this alternate third hole is the only natural island green in the world today. The hole can be reached on foot or by cart at low-tide or via amphibious golf cart at high tide. If the surf is too choppy there is another hole on land to play. But why play that hole when you can play this stunning hole?
Man O’ War, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Par 4, No. 14, 382 yards; Par 3, No. 15, 173 yards
If you like island greens, you’ll love the back-to-back island greens at Man O’ War in Myrtle Beach. The greens are somewhat large and not too menacing, but if you’re intimidated by water, you’re going to be challenged by these holes.
Once you finally get on the green on any of these holes, we recommend using a Bloodline putter to put the ball in the hole.
What is your favorite island green?