Course no. 52 for 2022 – Byron Bay GC, NSW
Nomadic_golfer : December 2022
Par 72, 5960m, slope 131, green fee $70 (Blue 6303m)
4 par 3s from 128 – 170m, 10 par 4s from 321 – 384m, 4 par 5s from 453 – 493m
The Byron golf course is just south of the uber-cool township and across the road from the beach. Aesthetics are a highlight, with wintergreen couch prevalent on fairways and most tees, with 328 Bermuda greens. Greens were in excellent early summer nick, quite firm and quick, with a number of steeply elevated greens leading to large drop-offs on all slides.
Its a quirky start with an unusually constructed long, tight 4 to start and the first 4 par 4s all very tight. The course has a good mix of straight holes and dog-legs and has medium to large greens, with water coming into play on numerous holes. It starts off flat for the first 6, and ends up with the back 9 on nice, undulating terrain. The rough is not overly penal but the course would be very tough for a high-handicapper with the raised greens, tight couch lies and water.
The 7th hole is one of the tougher holes in the state – 400m, with sharp right to left bend, then a steep incline to the green. Favourite holes were: 6 (500m par 5, bending slighty right to left with large gums down both sides and water right, narrowing for 2nd shot with fairway bunker left, then bunkers left and right of green), 10 (370m from elevated tee, steep downhill tee shot to wide fairway with trouble left and mounds right, turning to steep uphill 2nd shot to elevated green, 12 (130m par 3 with tall trees left to very narrow green sloping severely from left to right) and 13 (signature hole, 500m with narrow fairway on downhill tee shot, then a large green with lots of possible pin points determining where best to approach the pin from; green is surrounded by water. The approach shot is not for the faint-hearted, whether you have a wedge or 3 wood in your hand).
Overall this is a good test of golf, with those tight fairways early demanding an accurate start from the tee, while the trickier green complexes and undulations later in the round ask more of your approach game. Couple the test with the spectacular native scenery, and this is a course really worth playing.