Located in the Pacific Northwest with its tall, majestic trees and rugged terrain, Oregon is one of the most beautiful states in the country and is a veritable golfer’s paradise. The state boasts more than 200 golf courses and has a growing and thriving golfing culture. A good portion of the top tracks in the state are concentrated in the seaside resort town of Bandon which features five of the best courses not only in the state, but in the entire region.
To get an idea what the best courses in Bandon and the rest of the state really are, here are five Oregon golf courses you need to play.
Best Public Course: Pacific Dunes Golf Club
Nestled, or better yet, carved into the rocky, natural terrain found along the shores of the mighty Pacific Ocean, Pacific Dunes could take the prize for most scenic and most challenging course in Oregon, but it will just have to settle for best over all course instead. This Tom Doak masterpiece was opened in 2001 and has been a thrill for countless golfers ever since.
The course features stunning views of the Pacific Ocean, and the windswept layout gives off a links vibe. You are just as likely to encounter 60 foot sand dunes as you are large, stately shore pines at Pacific Dunes and in either case you will be overwhelmed by your surroundings and overjoyed that you are playing such a unique track.
The first hole gives you a good idea of what the rolling, generous fairways will play like throughout the round, and a sloping green surrounded by thick rough, wild grasses, and deep bunkers proves what a test you will be in for.
The second hole comes with a brilliant view of the Pacific and a fairway dotted with bunkers nearly from tee to green. Wind will almost certainly be a factor on the par 5 third hole as an elevated tee box plays down toward the ocean and the gusting winds coming off it.
On the back nine, ocean views and shapely, undulating greens come into play frequently and make for a striking, demanding nine holes of golf.
The course isn’t too long, measuring at just over 6600 yards from the tips and is a par 71.
There is a full range of prices to play at Pacific Dunes or any of the other Bandon Dunes courses, starting at $100 in January for guests of the resort and peaking at $345 for a round of 18 walking for non guests in the summer.
Best Private Course: Eugene Country Club
Routinely recognized as one of the top 100 courses in the country, Eugene Country Club is a gorgeous, well laid out golf course and is perhaps the best private track in Oregon. The meticulously manicured, rolling fairways weave naturally in and out of a sea of furs and pines. The tall trees also crown around the course’s contoured, sloping greens and create a truly breathtaking atmosphere.
A meandering stream and various water hazards lend to both the challenge and the beauty of this fine course, and the strategically placed bunkers and think rough demand accuracy.
Eugene Country Club measure just over 6800 yards and is a regulation par 72.
The tough part about this amazing track is that it is private and only open to members and their guests.
Most Scenic: Bandon Dunes Golf Course
While any of the Bandon courses would be considered the most scenic in many other states, Bandon Dunes edges out the others as the most beautiful in Oregon. With a natural layout that incorporates the native landscape magnificently, and views of the Pacific from nearly every hole, Bandon Dunes is simply mesmerizing.
With mounds punishing anything long of the green on the par 4 first hole, and bunkers set to devour anything short, the first hole is a great opener and showcases the intricacies that follow the rest of the way.
On the back nine, 12, 15, and 16 are the most spectacular and in places play right up against the ocean.
Bandon Dunes measures 6732 yards from the black tees and is a regulation par 72.
The price to play at Bandon Dunes is the same as the other courses found at the resort and fluctuates throughout the year. See Pacific Dunes above for more details.
Most Difficult: Pronghorn Resort Golf Course—Nicklaus
With absolutely breathtaking views of the snowcapped, Cascade Mountains, the Jack Nicklaus signature course at Pronghorn Resort is the best public course in Oregon outside of Bandon Dunes. It’s also the hardest course in the state, in our opinion. The course features stunning scenery, tall pines, and even lava formations. The more pedestrian qualities—like pristine, meandering creeks, and oversized bunkers—aren’t too bad either.
This picturesque course provides great views and golf on every hole and has quickly become a must play.
The course measures over 7300 yards from the tips and is a regulation par 72. The other course at the resort, designed by Tom Fazio, is no slouch either, and worth a look if you get the chance.
A round at the Nicklaus course typically costs around $170 for 18 walking but the twilight rate dips to $100.
Best Value: Black Butte Ranch Golf Course
There are so many spectacular courses in the state featuring mountain or ocean views, and outstanding golf holes mazing their way through tall pines. If there is a problem with these courses it is that they can be a shade on the expensive side. However, if you are looking for all the best Oregon golf has to offer without paying the high price of a typical Oregon golf course, then you will want to check out Black Butte Ranch Golf Course.
This great course boasts all the same scenery and playability as many of the other Oregon courses, but only costs $57 for 18 walking during the day, and $52 during twilight hours.
Mountains, ocean views, and lush vegetation are the perfect combination for some incredible golf courses and that is just what you’ll find in Oregon. If you haven’t ventured to the Beaver State yet for some sensational golf, you really should soon. Happy golfing.
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