Nomadic_golfer : July 2020
Par 70, 5513m, slope 127, green fee $32
5 par 3s from 130 – 186m, 10 par 4s from 296 – 390m, 3 par 5s from 443 – 475m
Still at our base by the beach at Old Bar, next course up was Taree. There are 25,000 people living in Taree, which is about 15 minutes inland from Old Bar and located on the banks of the Manning River. We’re talking 300km from Sydney and the home of NRL star Latrelle Mitchell.
This track is not quite in the same league as the previous 2 courses in the area; Tuncurry & Tallwoods. It’s a parklands type course in the middle of town with various grasses for fairways that are patchy and undefined. Greens were very soft and slow but quite smooth and tees soft and shaggy.
The first 12 holes are on one side of the road and longer than the 6 on the clubhouse side. The layout does lack any real strategy, very wide fairways without any real design intention. There is a different feel to the last 6 holes, characterised by shortish dogleg par 4s.
The first hole (main photo) is probably the best hole, 186m steep downhill par 3 with bunker on the left and a hazard well right. It’s part of a very tough start, which is the best part of the course; 2 is a 390m sweeping right to left par 4 with a raised green and 4 (first photo below) is a 170m par 3, almost full water carry across a very large dam. Holes 1 and 2 are the two hardest on the index, and 4 would scare the hell out of most who play here. After this, there isn’t anything that really grabbed me with 8 par 4’s between 296 and 340m, other than the 475m par 5, 8th; a sweeping right to lefter which starts uphill and turns downhill on the bend to a raised green set in a nook of trees (photo on right).
I left without a feel for what Taree GC stood for, it was more of a collection of holes without a common feel or theme, but there is enough in the tough start and the tightish, dogleg biased finish to be a solid test of golf.
Oh, and I saw my favourite sign of the trip so far on this day (bottom right). It was on a track leading to the beach at Manning Point. It is very much ‘to the point’