I’ve only been able to get out on the course four times in the last six weeks or so and with this crazy weather we’ve had in North Carolina in the last month and a half, I’ve only completed two rounds of golf! Both of them were at the Linville Falls Mountain Club in beautiful Linville Falls, NC. I took the camera out both days, but both days were cloudy, foggy, humid days and not perfect for taking any “golf course glamor shots”. (I did snap a couple and one is the photo of the day if you’re reading this story off the front page right now.)
The other two rounds were cut short by torrential downpours about 3-4 holes into my rounds. This particular round was started at 8:45am or so, and my good friend Frank Wimbush – who happens to be a client and proprietor/innkeeper of Azalea Inn Bed & Breakfast – and I had nobody in front or behind us all round long. In fact, we might have only seen five or six other golfers on the course and the parking lot was nearly empty as we arrived and left the course post round. Of course it is a Wednesday, but STILL – this place is far too nice to be seeing such few golf rounds right now. My only thought is that not enough people KNOW that the course has reopened after being closed for a few years due to the back-to-back hurricanes of 2004 that washed out and destroyed the course. (See Linville Falls Mountain Club for that story)
Five years and a few million dollars later and you’d never know it was under thousands of tons of rocks and mountains for several years. According to long-time fan, Frank Wimbush, “I think the course is better now than it was before it was destoyed.” He adds, “I played the course a lot before it was closed and I remember relating to many people that I didn’t think I’d see it reopen in my lifetime. And here it is better than ever and looking great. This place brings back great memories for me.”
I can only relate to how the course appears after the makeover, but it is in great shape and it offers 18 holes of beauty and challenging golf. I shot an 86 on it two weeks before – but on this day neither Frank or myself was able to break 100. (Not a good scoring round to say the least.) The fairways are wonderful and the first cut of rough is perhaps only 2-3″ deep – but VERY healthy and thick. Anything off the fairway provides for a tough advancement of the ball. The greens had been aerated maybe three weeks prior and were in great shape for today. This place and much of the North Carolina mountains have seen far too much in the way of rain lately and the golf course here at Linville Falls could use a good week or two of dry weather as it played tougher and longer because everything from the fairways, to the rough to the greens was W-E-T. Even though there had been no rain since Tuesday afternoon, the fairways were wet with numerous areas that made us thankful for waterproof golf shoes. Putts were providing some rooster-tailing even two hours into the round.
As the title to this story says, even the worst days of golf are better than a day at the office, and this was by no means a bad day. The sun broke out a bit here and there and other than some strong humidity on this normally, low-humidity region, the weather was very nice, the course was GREAT, and the company was even better.
Frank and I would HIGHLY recommend that you book a round of golf at Linville Falls Club and Preserve soon. This secret is certain to get out soon and it won’t be long before everyone finds out that they have reopened and in such great shape. A round of golf on this particular day was $35 which was a bargain for the quality of golf being offered.
If you’re planning a trip up to the Western North Carolina High Country – which includes Linville Falls, Banner Elk, etc… look on this website for lodging choices – including my buddy, Frank Wimbush’s Azalea Inn. He and Karen offer a great B & B, and gorgeous cabins in Banner Elk that are convenient to Sugar Mountain Golf Course just a couple of minutes away – or you can drive the 15-20 minutes to Linville Falls Mountain Club and Preserve. Check out the Azalea Inn online by clicking here> Banner Elk Lodging and the golf course at www.LinvilleFallsMountainClub.com and tell them you saw them on GolfNorthCarolina.com!
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* If you’re out playing a round of golf – take your camera, snap a photo or video or two and email it to us with a review and we’ll post your comments and images. Share your thoughts about golf in North Carolina and we’ll make you famous!