GALLERY: Tobacco Road - Sanford, NC
Updated: Jun 29
What is left to say about a course that has had literally everything said about it? Well, not much. Aside from the 'new' El Camino par three routing over the front nine (which we have a hole by hole review of it here), there is nothing really that is left to be said about a course that was so innovative and polarizing that it became a lightening rod for future golf course design. That doesn't mean it's not worthy of conversation...
Ask yourself, "Would there be a Streamsong or a Sand Valley without Tobacco Road?" If you haven't played it, chances are good you've heard of it. Chances are also good that you've heard both ends of the spectrum from its past players.
In July of this past year (2018), we gathered in Pinehurst to play the 400th course on our Golf Crusade. There was only one of the seven courses that we played inside 48 hours that wasn't a new course for us - Tobacco Road. While BMAC had not seen it for himself, Dooner (yours truly) had the privilege to play it way back in the early 2000s.
Since it was so long ago, I certainly desired a replay knowing the course over matched and intimidated the shit out of me the first time. Also, seeing as how the few surviving pictures I had left of the course (after 3-4 new computers, crashes and multiple new generations of digital cameras) pretty much sucked, it was due for a proper re-shoot with modern gear and upgraded skills.
We're excited to provide you a glimpse through our eyes into the genius that Mike Strantz possessed with his. While Strantz was taken from us far too young, we are left with his 5th Symphony of earth & turf, sand and blue skies.
Without further ado, we present you with the Strantz masterpiece, Tobacco Road Golf Club.
We hope you've enjoyed our trip through one of golf's ultimate thrill rides! Do yourself a favor and play The Road the first chance you get. It is truly a place to be revered, cherished and loved (or hated depending on how you play).
Just as they say, "don't judge a book by its cover," judge not the course on the first round. View it as merely the first chapter. The more you play it, the more likely it is you can't turn the page (i.e. plan your next visit) fast enough!
-Your Golf Crusaders