Nothing sad about the Blue golf course at Bethpage State Park in New York



FARMINGDALE, N.Y. -- First opened in 1935 along with the Red Course, the A.W. Tillinghast-designed Blue Course at Bethpage State Park features a tale of two nines.

Locals rank the front nine as one of the toughest stretches among the five golf courses at Bethpage, meaning if you can survive it relatively unscathed, you've got a chance for a really good score overall with an easier back nine.

The toughest hole on the course is on the front -- the par-4 sixth that doglegs left and plays more than 460 yards from the back tees. You can cut the corner with a hook or high draw (for right-handers) over the trees, but a large fairway bunker can catch good tee shots and make the long uphill approach to the green nearly impossible. Another bunker is across the fairway, but long hitters can fly it from the elevated tee and into the fourth fairway if they fail to move the ball from right to left or hit it too far.

The course, which was renovated in 1958 to make room for the Yellow Course, plays nearly 6,700 yards from the back tee. Tee boxes and greens are often elevated as much as 50 feet on the original Tillinghast holes.

The Blue is generally considered the third-toughest course behind the Black Course and the Red.

Jul 25, 2014




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Mike Bailey

Senior Staff Writer

Mike Bailey is a senior staff writer based in the Houston area. Focusing primarily on golf in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean and Latin America, he contributes course reviews, travel stories and features as well as the occasional equipment review. An award-winning writer and past president of Texas Golf Writers Association, he has more than 20 years in the golf industry. Before joining the TravelGolf Network team in 2008, he held positions at PGA Magazine, The Golfweek Group and AvidGolfer Magazine. Follow Mike on Twitter at @Accidentlgolfer.


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