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America's 100 Greatest
Golf Courses

Long Cove Club

Hilton Head Island / 7,094 yards, Par 71 / Points 59.2494

Rob Kaufman / Kaufman Photography

173. Long Cove Club

Pete Dye & Alice Dye (1982)

Long Cove was originally routed by Frank Duane and his then-partner Arnold Palmer in the early 1970s. Then Pete Dye was offered the job, but turned it down in order to concentrate on construction of No. 52 TPC Sawgrass. Once TPC was finished, Dye was persuaded to build Long Cove. Having previously done No. 142 Harbour Town just down the road, Dye wanted to do something different, so he installed knobs and mounds and framing berms, shaped some remarkably large greens and built two holes skirting the Colleton River. His construction crew contained half a dozen youngsters who would ultimately became golf architects, including construction supervisor Bobby Weed, Tom Doak, David Savic, Ron Farris, Scott Pool and Pete’s younger son, P.B. In 2018, Weed, author of No. 107 Olde Farm, was picked to restore Pete’s original design, which had grown shaggy around the edges. Now golfers can again run the ball onto 16 of the 18 greens.

100 Greatest/Second 100 Greatest History: Ranked on America’s 100 Greatest: 1983 through 2010. Ranked on Second 100 Greatest: 2013 to current. Highest ranking: No. 19, '85-86. Previous ranking: No. 168.

Watch Golf Digest’s latest “Every Hole At” course videos below:

Panelist comments, Long Cove Club:

"Unlike the local works of Harbour Town and Kiawah Island Ocean, Long Cove has a softer, less severe (than the Ocean) and a more expansive, free flowing feel (than Harbour Town). Also, unlike both of these course Long Cove employs larger, sectional green complexes with multiple options to work the ball toward various hole positions. Long Cove is a softer, gentler Pete Dye where one can certainly score well if your club selection and execution are better than average."

"Great attention to detail, fun to play with equal chances for scoring while still offering challenging holes throughout. The variety of hazards is outstanding and the complex green surfaces are beautifully integrated with their surrounds. To me, it is the best course in Hilton Head and one of Pete's best. The bunker work has restored the original look and feel to the design and should bring it back closer to contending for our future 100 Greatest rankings."

"Overall, Long Cove Club should be a must-experience for any fan of Pete Dye for its sleepy, exclusive lowcountry feel, and being a strong and unique Pete Dye masterpiece. Long Cove is the kind of golf club everyone wishes they belonged to."

"Long Cove has some incredibly varied and well thought out green complexes which feature false fronts, swales and hollows and mounds to feed the ball toward or away from the hole. A recent renovation to the fairway turf and drainage has left Long Cove bouncy and firm and quite pleasant to play. From up to 15 yards off the green complexes I felt comfortable putting the ball onto the green."

"A premium on angles to giving yourself a chance to score is typical of Pete Dye. He does such a great job with tricking your eyes and placing mounds in hitting areas on this course was no exception. Not always easy but very fair."

"Mr. Dye did a fine job creating a mixture of long, open par 4's and mid-short par 4's where not only hitting the fairway is imperative (but the right portion of the fairway is equally or more important. And typical of Mr. Dye, the par 3s have a strong design variety with direction, length and design."

Joann Dost
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