Course Caddy: Highland Links No. 4
The First Par-5 of the Round Has a Distinct Path to Follow; So Let’s Follow It

Welcome to the Course Caddy, a look at each and every hole in Golden Tee 2014. Over the next few months, we will spend each day looking at a different design, starting with Hole 1 on the first course and ending with the final hole on the final design.

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Highland Links Hole No. 4

Well, now that’s a lot of pot bunkers.

The first par-5 of the round provides a taste of everything Highland Links has to offer: bunkers, rough, wind, some rock and a tricky—but manageable—path to eagle.

As is the case with every hole on this course, keep your tee shot out of the rough. It will all but guarantee you won’t be able to reach the green in two if you find it, so don’t be overly aggressive. While you can drive it over all the bunkers with a good wind and a high tee, distance really isn’t an issue here.

In fact, staying back short of the larger bunker in the middle of the hole will leave a solid opportunity for eagle. You might have to hit a 3-wood or a driver versus a smaller club, but there’s nothing wrong with that. It certainly beats having no approach at all.

As for this second shot, the one item to be wary of is the rock wall on the left side of the green. Don’t be a sucker for a pin nearby; it’s not worth it. If you hit this surface, the results likely won’t be pretty.

Instead, play for the center of the green.

If the pin is elsewhere, you have options depending on your comfort level with the shot. Bite and Backspin certainly work with pins located in the middle to front part of the green, and if played accordingly, they could lead you to big things.

Because of the elevation, your ball will spin plenty here. Take note of how it reacts to certain setups and conditions and adjust accordingly.

Of course, you can also approach this shot with no spin at all, especially on back pins. While this will not be the desired way to play on most setups, it can work when dealt a shot that can and should release. If you’re able to play the right break accordingly, it can release right into the cup.


Stay in the short stuff, stay away from the rock, avoid the bunkers and give yourself a putt. The strategy here isn’t complex, and it can lead you to plenty of eagles if you follow the blueprint.

How do you play?

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