The Ultimate Golf Challenge

Crystal clear, blue skies, manicured greens and morning air so crisp you can almost taste the sunrise beckon golfers to breathtaking courses on the Alabama Gulf Coast. As they have for decades, shotmakers  from around the world descend upon Lower Alabama to immerse themselves in what many affectionately refer to as “the greatest game ever played.”

Most any avid Bay-area golfer has an opinion on his or her favorite signature hole. In fact, ask five members from one club, and you’ll probably get five different answers. Here, the experts, local golf pros, share their top picks for the best regional game play, assembling 18 prized holes to make one ultimate fantasy course. Did your picks make the cut? Step with me now onto a tee box of dew-kissed Bermuda, and let the aroma of pine and oak overwhelm your senses as you limber up for that first shot.

For a printable and easier-to-read version of the fantasy course, click here.

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WEB EXCLUSIVE: No. 19 – “Argh!”

No, that’s not the sound of your caddie screaming in pain because you managed to take out his other eye with your second poorly miscalculated and overextended windup. It’s the sound of pirates! Leave your professionalism and ego at the door, and put your short game to the test at the exotic Pirate’s Island Adventure miniature golf in Gulf Shores.

Think oak tree hazards are challenging? Try aiming around the gargantuan graveyard dominating hole No. 10 on the Blackbeard course. Whether you decide to play the hole to the left or right, one thing is certain, it will require accuracy and imagination. If all else fails, feel free to join fellow mini-golfers in expressing your exasperation by tossing your putter into the nearest stream and finding a snack bar.

Joshua D. Givens

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