|Green (W)||71||6320 yards||77.8||137|
|Gold (W)||71||5658 yards||74.1||126|
|Orange (W)||71||4985 yards||70.1||117|
|Royal Blue||71||4040 yards||62.5||101|
|Royal Blue (W)||71||4040 yards||66.1||107|
|Black M: 74.4/131||341||181||375||504||160||555||363||181||416||3076||465||445||237||346||370||535||455||546||469||3868||6944|
|Green M: 71.6/126 W: 74.1/126||304||162||345||472||134||520||345||170||352||2804||440||399||205||319||297||482||433||515||426||3516||6320|
|Gold M: 68.0/116 W: 72.1/122||275||139||312||441||121||467||322||152||343||2572||383||390||164||253||254||424||408||397||413||3086||5658|
|Orange M: 65.2/101 W: 70.1/117||242||106||244||391||100||401||311||130||284||2209||369||344||149||247||238||340||326||391||372||2776||4985|
|Royal Blue M: 62.5/104 W: 66.1/107||213||102||217||283||100||354||195||121||231||1816||278||250||91||220||184||313||270||343||275||2224||4040|
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Another Great Golf Track at Bandon
This course played a tiny bit easier for me than the other Bandon properties. The greens are larger and the fairways are generous. That is not to say this is not a test. Old Macdonald has some of the harder holes at Bandon. Enjoy, but do bring a caddy.
Vast and Spectacular
Old Macdonald seems to be a polarizing golf course. I'm here to say don't skip it on your Bandon Trip. It now stands firmly at the top of my list of favorites. It's the most fun I've ever had on a golf course.
There's something for every player. The fairways are easy to hit and the greens are huge, but being in the right position is important if you want to score well. Your ball runs forever (sometimes into well placed sand traps) and the ground game is more significant here than on the other Bandon courses. The undulations in the greens are dramatic and forced some exciting putts that you've most likely never had to attempt before.
For architecture buffs, there's an added bonus of playing holes you've always dreamt about. The routing puts these holes together in spectacular fashion. The blind shots and hidden traps put excitement into every shot.
The constant crescendo and decrescendo of views and landscape never ceases to amaze. There's always something new to catch your eye, even with the ghost tree lurking the entire round, even after you've conquered it. This is the purest golf experience I've ever had. All you can see around you is the pacific, sand, gorse, and golf.
Cannot believe this course is not rated higher. Only has a few ocean views but is one of the most playable, challenging, picturesque courses I’ve ever seen. Links golf at it’s finest.
Play as a replay
Decided to try Old MAC as a replay round. Had great weather (can only imagine playing when it’s rainy/windy). Took me a few holes to figure out that the greens since they have bigger slopes were a bit slower speed wise than the other courses. The front 9 had some interesting holes - #3 is an interesting hole tee to green. #5 has a massive green and the best spot on the course is the 7th green/8th tee. Great views of the ocean. Back 9 was bear, almost every hole played uphill it felt. Played on its own it’s not a bad course but in comparison to the other courses it falls short. I’m glad I played it but it’s not at the top of the list to play again.
About as "linksy" as one can experience.
Jast another of the wonderful, wonderful Bandon courses on this marvelous rota. This one has blind shots where the caddy's knowledge pays off on aim points over dunes to shielded greens. Reminded me of New South Wales in Australia.
I'll give Old Mac a second chance next time
Old Mac wasn't kind to me in any way. The course had water on certain greens and fairways as a result of the wettest, coldest winter in decades on the Oregon coast. The sub-50-degree day I played it, stinging hail pelted my group.
Needless to say, I didn't play well and get a good feel for what could be an interesting course. Walking off with at least eight three-putts, I thought 'How anyone could enjoy such a punishing putting test on huge greens'?
That said, there are other subtleties to appreciate - the blind tee shot near the 'ghost tree' on no. 3 and the biarritz green on the downhill par-3 fifth hole. Old Mac will never be my favorite at Bandon Dunes, but maybe a second helping will give me a better understanding of its merits and help me overlook its weaknesses.
A complete dog track
Seriously, charging this much money to hit a golf ball in 18 cow pastures just doesn't make any sense.
Here's an idea, plant some trees and think about leveling out the fairways. No idea why you'd have a course with uneven lies all over the place, no trees whatsoever, and you can't even take carts on it. I'm a +1 and yet I couldn't break 102 on this course. That proves the place is garbage.
Your score means literally nothing in determining the quality of a course. Frankly, with all the pictures available online, if you want to Old Macdonald expecting flat fairways, trees, and mid sized greens, you need to look at pictures. All of that is obvious to anyone going there. Old Macdonald is easily 8 out of 10, probably 9 out of 10, and one of the 20 or 25 best golf courses built in the last 40 years.
A Cut Below
Old Macdonald is the newest and, to be blunt, the least appealing option for golf enthusiasts visiting Bandon Dunes. It's not that it's a terrible golf course -- far from it. But there are too many odd design aspects that bump Old Mac, though visually dramatic, down to fourth on my personal list. Let's start with the greens. They're massive -- one of our caddies said they're the largest green surfaces in North America. I believe it. You could conceivably hit all 18 greens and four- (or five-) putt all of them. They're that big. But honestly, I don't really mind that. It rewards good ball-striking and distance control. My biggest issue was that there were nine good holes and nine ... well ... not-so-good holes. Too often, it seemed, there were brutally long par 4s with greens that not only were elevated but also had severe false fronts. I'm not a short hitter -- my average drive is probably 270 yards -- but with a little bit of wind, I was hitting driver-4 iron into several greens. Instead of having a playable putting surface to accept what are lower, less spinning shots, the greens here harshly rejected them. My playing partner wouldn't even bother going for some of the par-4 greens in two, knowing that he couldn't even come close. Frankly, it's too penal for the average golfer, especially when it's windy (which it is almost all the time). It just seemed like a missed opportunity, when the greens could have been designed to accept and funnel balls into pockets on the greens, rather than send them into tight lies well below the putting surface. Let me be clear, there are some awesome holes here -- the third, seventh, eighth, 13th and 14th all come to mind -- but you can find better golf options at Bandon.
My least favorite of the four at Bandon.
This is what I wrote in a review three years ago. "I like it a lot, didn't love it though. I think if I played it again I'd grow to love it more. There were just several blind shots that I thought were forced and unnecessary. They were there for the sake of it. But it was another fun walk and it was the second round of a 36-hole day for me."
Agree, with all that, but I think I liked it less the second time around. Too many forced carries into ridiculously huge greens on holes that are already difficult. I don't mind a forced carry, but to continuously do it on difficult holes makes no sense. It's still a good place and worth playing if you have time, but I wouldn't leave one of the other three off before this one.
It's all weird too because a lot of people love Old Mac. In fact, I've heard some say it's one of their favorites there. I don't see that.
A different Bandon experience!!
Love it, like it, hate it, loathe it, or just skip it!!!!!
Old Mac is a great conversation piece because it is so divisive among people who have played it. Its the one course that is going to have friends arguing all the way home about where it ranks on the list of "Bandons Best".
On my personal 8 man buddies trip 3 guys had it as their favorite, 1 guy had it at 3rd, 3 guys had it 4th and the other guy hated it so much he had it 7th behind Shortys, The Punchbowl and The Preserve. HE REALLY HATES OLD MAC, granted he shot 91 and is 5 handicap.
I by no means have a love affair with Old Mac, but it offers a totally different experience compared to the other courses at Bandon. Giving credit where it is due, the goal of Old Mac is to pay homage to CB Macdonald and the heritage of the game of golf in the United States, and in that regard it exceeds at the highest of levels. Shots and greens, and visuals, and lines have the most distinct feel of Scotland that CB tried to bring to the American game, and with Old Mac they expand on that dream.
Saying that, where I think I fall out of love with Old Mac is that in an effort to make the course "fun" and "more playable", which I totally understand as Bandon is a resort, they have set the course up to be beaten by a player who only needs to be able to hit 2 or 3 types of shots all round to post a good score. It doesnt particularly pressure any parts of your game, and I feel like I hit the same drawing driver tee shot 10 times.
Is it unique, with some of the craziest greens you will ever see? You bet!! Would I ever skip it?? Not a chance. Is it number 4 and holding on my personal favorite list? Yep.
Not Just a Template Remake
This is a real links with quirk and the largest green complexes on earth. Golf course architecture buffs will recognize a lot of the MacDonald-Raynor template holes here; however, they are not just duplications but unique takes on them. The Eden is here on hole #2, but you could actually putt the whole way-something Old Mac would frown upon. The menacing bunkers come into play with front hole locations. Go long and there is a bunker at the back waiting for you. The Redan is here, but the green is significantly longer than the original or any of MacDonalds'. Yet it is undeniably a redan; I think the 16th at Pac Dunes is a better one-not a complaint just an observation. Do avoid the bunker on the left, I saw some people chip backwards to get out after the direct approach was an exercise in futility. There is a great recreation of the hellacious bunker at St. Andrews or the Cardinal bunker from Prestwick on the 6th which is a par 5" long hole". The 16th is a very long Alps hole, but if your drive is long enough the approach is neither blind nor need go over the hill. The 8th is a Biarritz. Some of the best holes are not template-the par 4 7th comes to mind as does the par 4 14th as well as the par 5s other than the 6th. The best green might be the par 3 5th; at least, if you miss the proper section watch the roller coaster putt. The blind drive on the 3rd hole is a joy and if you hit the left side, your ball might roll all the way down to the green.
The greens are massive-larger than St. Andrews. Hitting the proper club and proper section is vital. Considering the ground game options, use the contours. The routing is unique as the first nine has 3 par 3s and 1 par 5. The second nine has 1 par 3 and 2 par 5s and many par 4s-it is 500 to 800 yards longer than the front all depending on your tee choice. Most of the holes are in a great valley that opens after you walk up the hill on the 3rd hole. The views of the ocean happen on the 7th and 15th greens, but views of the course in all its splendor happen on top of the 3rd and 14th.
Remember, you are playing a links course and this is a great one. If you are looking for American aerial golf and two nines with 2 par 3s and 2 par 5s on each side, then this is not for you. I am sure that this is not everyone's cup of tea, but if you like links golf or want a living cliff-notes on architecture, then you will enjoy Old Mac. Not my favorite here, but I do get in a round each time I am in town; it is a unique experience in the States.
A great change of pace from the other 3 courses
I knew I would enjoy this course, but didn't figure I would like it as much as I did. Not only are there some really well-designed holes, but there are some incredible views from the high points on the course as well. The greens are humongous and a game unto themselves. Four putts are common, and three-putts are nothing to be ashamed of, which makes it paramount to find the right parts of the greens on approaches if you want to score. Love the view from above the 15th green. The punchbowl green on 18 is the one that's supposed to funnel everything to the hole, but you still have to hit a quality putt or two there as well.
Closest golf course to The Old Course I have found
Old Mac may not be everyone's highest rated course at Bandon Dunes, but it is an excellent links experience and should not be missed by anyone visiting the resort. The green complexes alone are a study in golf architecture and the conditioning was the best of all we played this week. The front nine is a fun scoring opportunity, while the back nine (3 strokes more and 700 yds longer) is a hang on for dear life to save your score experience. This is the closest course I have ever seen to the "feel" of playing The Old Course at St Andrews. No, there's no town next to 18, but the roll of the land and the grandness is there. This is also certainly the easiest course to walk at the resort. The giant greens will test your short game and you'll begin to realize that just getting a GIR doesn't mean much here. You really need to dial in and hit exact quadrants of the greens to score. Fun and exciting, this one should not be missed.
wasted our $
This was without a doubt one of my biggest mistakes ever. Took 2 of us nearly 5 hrs to walk. Nobody behind us and nobody in front of us. Was the Bataan death march. Some of the holes were so over designed as to be silly. Was looking for the clown and the windmill on some greens. Advertised as a links course. EXCEPT you cannot bounce the ball on the green on most holes. Tricked up in front of almost all greens unnecessarily. A "links" course where you have to hit a high 2nd or 3rd ball in on a WINDY course. Save your $ and play Pacific Dunes (which I have played 5 times, Bandon Dunes 4 times, Bandon Trails 4 times). If it was free, I would decline.
It's good, because it's so different than the others.
I like it a lot, didn't love it though.
I think if I played it again I'd grow to love it more. There were just several blind shots that I thought were forced and unnecessary. They were there for the sake of it.
But it was another fun walk and it was the second round of a 36-hole day for me.