The American Express

La Quinta, Calif.


Course Rankings

Mammoth Dunes

May 03, 2021

Courtesy of Jeffrey R. Bertch

Mammoth Dunes

No. 152 on America's Second 100 Greatest Courses
No. 29 on America's 100 Greatest Public Courses

David McLay Kidd (2018)

David Kidd began building a second 18 at Wisconsin’s Sand Valley Resort just before Coore and Crenshaw had completed their 18, which would be named Golf Digest’s Best New Course of 2017. Kidd was intent on topping their work, so he gave his meandering layout enormous fairways, big accessible greens and visually-unique hillsides of exposed sand, “mammoth dunes” that became the course moniker. “This could be the best course I and my team have yet created,” Kidd wrote in late 2017. “We can’t wait for the critics to decide if they agree.” They were disappointed with results of Golf Digest’s 2018 Best New Course survey, which placed Mammoth Dunes second behind Streamsong (Black). But balloting for Golf Digest’s 100 Greatest continued for an additional month after the close of Best New, and additional evaluations pushed Mammoth Dunes ahead of Streamsong (Black), which is now ranked No. 169.

100 Greatest/Second 100 Greatest History: Runner-up: 2018 Best New. Ranked on America's Second 100 Greatest: 2019 to current. Highest ranking: No. 145 (2019-2020). Previous ranking: No. 145.

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

Panelist comments, Mammoth Dunes:

"Almost every shot has an aspect of risk and reward where you can go at pins or use more generous slopes to get close to holes. There is ample opportunity to use finesse around the greens too because grass is tightly mown right up to the fringe and there are all kinds of slopes in and around greens."

"The walk through the dunes and waste areas and strands of pines is very memorable. Both Mammoth Dunes and Sand Valley have the same feel going through the long strands of sand and pine barrens. Very similar look to something like Friar's Head or Pinehurst with the sand areas and expanses of fairway. Long expanses of sand surround all the holes and frame the landing areas."

Courtesy of Jeffrey R. Bertch

Courtesy of Evan Schiller

Courtesy of Andy Johnson

Courtesy of Jeffrey R. Bertch

"The course is visually intimidating because of the dunes and waste areas. Many times, the hole will show you one way to play it but the smartest way to play it is hidden and involves a lot of risk."