America's 50 Toughest Golf Courses

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America's 50 Toughest Golf Courses

June 24, 2007

Pete Dye's Ocean Course tops our eclectic new ranking of America's 50 Toughest Golf Courses. Opened in 1991 before the Ryder Cup—and dubbed Looney Dunes for the mishaps there—the Ocean Course has the highest combination of Slope Rating (155) and Course Rating (79.6) in America.Pete Dye's Ocean Course tops our eclectic new ranking of America's 50 Toughest Golf Courses. Opened in 1991 before the Ryder Cup—and dubbed Looney Dunes for the mishaps there—the Ocean Course has the highest combination of Slope Rating (155) and Course Rating (79.6) in America.

The eighth hole at The International (The Pines), a 369-yard short dogleg left par 4. The International pounded its chest as the longest golf course in the land since 1957, only once adding new back tees when someone dared to challenge its supremacy.The eighth hole at The International (The Pines), a 369-yard short dogleg left par 4. The International pounded its chest as the longest golf course in the land since 1957, only once adding new back tees when someone dared to challenge its supremacy.

The 16th hole at Koolau GC Oahu, a 567-yard par 5. Koolau used to have a Slope Rating of 162, even though the maximum possible is 155.The 16th hole at Koolau GC Oahu, a 567-yard par 5. Koolau used to have a Slope Rating of 162, even though the maximum possible is 155.

The 17th hole on PGA West's Stadium Course is aptly known as Alcatraz.The 17th hole on PGA West's Stadium Course is aptly known as Alcatraz.

Oakmont CC's closing hole, where the U.S. Open Championship will finish up in June.Oakmont CC's closing hole, where the U.S. Open Championship will finish up in June.

The 18th hole at Bethpage State Park GC (Black), revamped by Rees Jones for the 2002 U.S. Open. It's still brutal, but in much better shape than years past.The 18th hole at Bethpage State Park GC (Black), revamped by Rees Jones for the 2002 U.S. Open. It's still brutal, but in much better shape than years past.

The sixth hole at Tot Hill Farm in Asheboro, N.C., where the late Mike Strantz perfected a design philosophy best known as Extreme Golf.The sixth hole at Tot Hill Farm in Asheboro, N.C., where the late Mike Strantz perfected a design philosophy best known as Extreme Golf.

Built on an abandoned Army bombing range, Pete Dye's Straits course at Whistling Straits in Haven, Wisc., has been described as a blend of Ballybunion and Beirut.Built on an abandoned Army bombing range, Pete Dye's Straits course at Whistling Straits in Haven, Wisc., has been described as a blend of Ballybunion and Beirut.

Ever want to see what "Hell's Half Acre" looks like? Here it is, from heaven's above: Pine Valley's par-5 seventh hole.Ever want to see what "Hell's Half Acre" looks like? Here it is, from heaven's above: Pine Valley's par-5 seventh hole.

Mike Strantz earned a second spot on our Top 10 list of the Toughest Courses with his design of Tobacco Road GC in Sanford, N.C. The 12th hole, shown here, gives you an idea why Tobacco Road has been called "Pine Valley seen through a funhouse mirror."Mike Strantz earned a second spot on our Top 10 list of the Toughest Courses with his design of Tobacco Road GC in Sanford, N.C. The 12th hole, shown here, gives you an idea why Tobacco Road has been called "Pine Valley seen through a funhouse mirror."

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