177. Shelter Harbor Golf Club
Michael Hurdzan & Dana Fry (2005)
Near the tiny southeast tip of Rhode Island is Shelter Harbor Golf Club, designed by Mike Hurdzan and Dana Fry during the same time frame when they were working on Erin Hills in Wisconsin. Located just a few miles north the Atlantic, the rocky land has rolls of some 70 feet in elevation change, which they used to dramatic effect. The routing loops around the deep forest like the wings of a butterfly, providing isolation to many holes. Glacial boulders poke out at many spots in primary rough, while tall far roughs of native grasses sway in the ocean breezes. The greens are Greenwich Velvet bent, an Old School selection meant to tolerate low mowing heights. Most impressive are Shelter Harbor’s shaggy bunkers, formed by “bunker guru” Jeff Bradley, who normally handles the bunkering for Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw.
100 Greatest/Second 100 Greatest History: First ranking
Panelist comments, Shelter Harbor Golf Club:
"Still my favorite in the state. The thing I like most about it is its elevation and how the designer has really captured the use of its terrain. Shelter Harbor has a beautiful stately clubhouse that sits on top of a hill looking down over its beautiful course."
"Shelter Harbor required a varying degree of shots in regards the par 3s, as they varied in distances by over 70 yards, in addition the par 4s offered multiple ways to play them ranging from a driver on a short par 4 to a strategic iron on a longer par 4."
"Exceptional bunker work that are true works of art."
"There is a tremendous amount of width, but it makes for a fun and interesting challenge. Lots of centerline hazards break make several of the holes much more strategic off the tee than at first glance."
Photos: Courtesy of Jon Cavalier