Carne Golf Links - 1st hole
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Carne Golf Links - 1st hole
The first hole at Carne Golf Links doglegs right into the dunes. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Images
Carne Golf Links - Kilmore Course - sign
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Carne Golf Links - Kilmore Course - sign
Carne Golf Links sits in a remote region of northwest Ireland where Gaelic is still spoken. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Carne Golf Links - hole 2
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Carne Golf Links - hole 2
Golfers can see the flag but not the green on the par-3 second hole at Carne Golf Links in County Mayo, Ireland. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Carne Golf Links - 6th
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Carne Golf Links - 6th
Florida PGA Professional Ken Juhn hits an approach to the sixth green at Carne Golf Links in Co. Mayo, Ireland. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Carne Golf Links - 7th hole
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Carne Golf Links - 7th hole
The par-3 seventh hole at Carne Golf Links climbs severely uphill. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Carne Golf Links - 8th hole
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Carne Golf Links - 8th hole
The par-4 eighth hole at Carne Golf Links doglegs left into the dunes. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Carne Golf Links - 10th hole
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Carne Golf Links - 10th hole
The green of the par-5 10th hole at Carne Golf Links is reachable downwind. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Carne golf course - 13th
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Carne golf course - 13th
The par-5 13th hole at Carne Golf Links provides views of the water. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Carne Golf Links - 16th
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Carne Golf Links - 16th
The par-3 16th hole at Carne Golf Links plunges into a green set in the dunes. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Carne golf course
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Carne golf course
There are some scenic spots at Carne Golf Links in County Mayo, Ireland. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Carne Golf Links - 17th hole
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Carne Golf Links - 17th hole
Watch out for the deep swale right of the 17th green at Carne Golf Links. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Carne Golf Links - Hackett course - hole 18
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Carne Golf Links - Hackett course - hole 18
Carne Golf Links finishes with a daunting par 5. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor

Carne Golf Links: Legend of Eddie Hackett lives on at the spectacular course in Co. Mayo, Ireland

CO. MAYO, Ireland -- Eddie Hackett saved perhaps his best work for last: Carne Golf Links . Carne introduced its final nine holes in 1993, just a few years before the diminutive 85-year-old Irish course designer passed away in 1996.

Carne's wild-dune cover matched up perfectly with Hackett's minimalist style. He dug only a few bunkers, simply because the natural terrain is imposing enough. Carne plays as pure as any natural links in the world. It might be Ireland's most undiscovered links, too, hidden in the remote northwest where Irish Gaelic is still spoken. As a local might say, Carne is simply iontach (translation: wonderful).

The Hackett course, a par 73 of 6,132 meters (roughly 6,700 yards), starts out on flatter ground inland near the local farms. The dunes on this loop feel more like modern-day mounding seen on Pete Dye-designed courses . Be sure to pick an extra club to climb to the elevated greens at no. 7 (a cool par 3) and no. 9 (a tough par 4).

The par-5 10th hole dives into the dunes where the real fun begins. The par-5 13th hole runs along Blacksod Bay. Starting at the 14th tee, situated on the water, the homeward stretch hikes up the mountainous dunes back toward the clubhouse. The par 4s at nos. 15 and 17 play extremely difficult, although there's a breather in between -- the gorgeous, downhill, par-3 16th hole.

The nine-hole Kilmore Course at Carne , added in 2013, adjacent to the dunes of the Hackett back nine, fits right in with the original course. If Carne were closer to civilization, golfers would be wondering why it's not on a top 100 list somewhere. It's that good.

Hackett is credited with designing excellent links at Enniscrone Golf Club and Donegal Golf Club , among others.

Jason Scott Deegan has reviewed more than 700 courses and golf destinations for some of the industry's biggest publications. His work has been honored by the Golf Writer's Association of America and the Michigan Press Association. Follow him on Twitter at @WorldGolfer.
Related Links
The championship course at Carne Golf Links in County Mayo ranks among the top 20 courses in Ireland. But the club's nine-hole Kilmore Course is uniquely special, Jason Scott Deegan writes. The routing lets the natural elevation changes within the dunes dictate the flow of holes.
Top 10 list: Reasons for a golf vacation to northwest Ireland
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Carne Golf Links: Legend of Eddie Hackett lives on at the spectacular course in Co. Mayo, Ireland
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