Donald Ross lives on at the recently restored Mid Pines Golf Club in Southern Pines, North Carolina

SOUTHERN PINES, N.C. -- Pinehurst No. 2 part deux? Mid Pines Golf Club, much like the celebrated U.S. Open host down the road, has returned to its Donald Ross roots after a recent restoration.

Mid Pines, an original Ross routing dating to 1921, reopened in August 2013 to rave reviews. Architect Kyle Franz used aerial photos from the Tufts Archives as a blueprint to uncover sandy native areas lining in the fairways that had been lost over the years.

Shrunken greens -- recovered in Bermuda grass -- were expanded by 20 to 25 percent to bring back their original shapes. Bunkers were redone or removed. All the rough has been mowed away, resulting in wide fairways. Subtleties were recaptured. A tall pine tree was removed from the seventh hole to follow a Ross creed that trees shouldn't be a significant hazard. The graceful Georgian-style Inn, a bastion of Southern hospitality, frames Mid Pines Golf Club's final green.

Pine Needles/Mid-Pines President Kelly Miller said the new Mid Pines might play a bit tougher than the previous version. "You need to be on the proper side of fairway for a good shot and an angle," he said. "With the new Bermuda greens, you can't fly it and stop it. It is more of a ground game. It is more the way the game was played years ago.

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.
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Donald Ross lives on at the recently restored Mid Pines Golf Club in Southern Pines, North Carolina
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