30. Bethpage (Black)
Course Location: Farmingdale, New York
Imagine walking up to the 1st tee of a course for the first time and seeing a sign that reads, “only for highly skilled golfers.” For many, seeing those words would be an instant invitation to turn around before you lost all the balls in your bag. But at The Black, golfers brace themselves for one of the most exhilarating rounds of their lives. Located in New York, Bethpage Black features uphill par-4s, gigantic bunkers that stump the world’s greatest players, and one of the country’s most iconic par-5s (4th).
The course has played host to the U.S. Open twice (2002, 2009) — ’02 won by Tiger Woods — and recently hosted the PGA Championship in 2019 (with Brooks Koepka coming out on top). If you aren’t a New York resident, it will cost you $150 to play a round.
Image Source: Two Inches Short
Course Location: East Hampton, New York
Another course located in New York, Maidstone is situated right along the coast of the Atlantic. This private club is home to both an 18-hole and 9-hole course. Established in 1891, Maidstone was originally just a 7-hole course — and later became a full-18 in 1899. While the setting may be picturesque, the course’s location also comes with a handful of challenges.
In addition to dealing with the ocean breeze, players must combat hazards including numerous sand dunes, a marsh, beach grass, bunkers, and a pond. Once you reach the greens, you will be met with numerous false fronts. Do you think you can conquer the elements?
Image Source: GOLF.com