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Alligator Alley Helps Make Dunes Club One of America’s Best Courses

October 30, 2017 by Chris King

The Dunes Golf & Beach Club is Myrtle Beach’s most storied course. The Robert Trent Jones Sr. design has hosted numerous professional events, including the Senior Tour Championship and the Women’s U.S. Open, and is ranked among America’s top 100 public courses by Golf Digest and Golf Magazine.

The 12th hole at the Dunes Club is part of Alligator AlleyConditions are always outstanding, and the greens are among the best in the state, always running fast and smooth. 

The Dunes Club is a bucket list course, not only for Myrtle Beach golfers but anyone who wants to play the nation’s best courses. A classic design, the Dunes Club features generous fairways, those unforgettable greens complexes, and several of the area’s most memorable holes. 

The par 3 ninth offers a view of the Atlantic Ocean, one of the few along the Myrtle Beach golf scene to do so, but it’s not enough to make the cut in our Hole of the Week feature. 

What we couldn’t do at the Dunes Club was narrow the selection to just one hole, so we are featuring the most famed stretch of holes along the Grand Strand. 

 

 

Alligator Alley
Holes 11-13

This unforgettable trio begins with the second most difficult hole on the back nine, the 370-yard (all distances from white tees) 11th hole. The fairway isn’t exceptionally tight but the swash from the nearby Atlantic Ocean comes into play on the approach, particularly on the drives that find the right side of the fairway. 

The preferred play is a drive up the left side, leaving an approach that provides some margin for error. Tee shots that end up to the right of center will require a second shot that must fly the marsh and a greenside bunker with no margin for error. 

The 12th hole, a par 3 that plays 150 yards, also requires a carry over the swash, so mishit shots will find a watery grave. But the green is large and not as undulating as the ones that precede and follow it, meaning your road to par or even birdie is a little easier. 

Last, but certainly not least, is the Grand Strand’s most recognizable hole, the par 5 13th, known simply as "Waterloo." The 90-degree dogleg right plays 520 yards around Lake Singleton and upwards of a dozen alligators will line the banks of the lake on any given day, enjoying the day while golfers attempt to avoid them. 

The course’s hardest hole, No. 13 is a true three-shot challenge and, unlike most par 5s, the drive is as much about positioning as distance. The closer you are to the lake, the more you can challenge the water on the second shot, but get too close and the very real possibility of losing a ball comes into play. 

The preferred drive is to the right center of the fairway, and then you play a second shot that leaves less than 150 yards on the approach. While Lake Singleton draws a lot of attention (and cameras), the 13th green is among the most challenging on the course. The putting surface is undulating and fast, so try and hit your spot below the hole. 

Do you have a favorite among the three holes that make up Alligator Alley? If so, let us know!