Traditional links course with some tricky holes!
The West Links course at North Berwick came into play in 1832. The club and course has a long history.
There are nice views over white sandy beaches, islands and across to the hills of the East Neuk of Fife. It’s an enjoyable golf course and a very welcoming club, but it’s doesn’t do it for me. Maybe it was because I was not feeling well (a flue is coming) or something else.
It’s a traditional links with the front nine going away from the clubhouse and the back nine coming back. The test is the front nine and it’s primarily because you’ll have the wind in your face. It’s by no mean an easy course, but it’s not that difficult either.
The holes that stand out are all on the back nine:
Hole 12 – 401 yards par 4
Dogleg left which needs to precise shots to get on green. Five bunkers are guarding the fairway about 250-270 yards off tee. Three bunkers are guarding the front of the green and you have an undulated tricky green. Great hole. Found a bunker off tee, managed to get out and reach green with next, two putts for a bogey 5.
Hole 13 – 387 yards par 4
The signature hole with a stonewall on the left hand side and green separated from the fairway by the wall – “Don’t argue with the wall, it’s older than you”. Stay away from the wall and you’ll be OK. I didn’t really do this, but put the approach shot short of the wall. Magic third shot close to pin and one put for a par.
Hole 17 – 428 yards par 4
Tricky hole with a narrow uphill slope to a hollow and the green behind a high ridge. Aim at Bass Rock and the second shot must carry the ridge. Fun hole. I didn’t carry the ridge and got hanging on the edge. Pitch and two putts for a bogey five.
Hole 18 – 277 yards par 4
Similar to the 18th at the Old Course. Car park on the entire right hand side and the clubhouse just behind the green. Plenty of space to the left. Play it safe or pay for car repairs! 250 yards drive to the left, short chip, missed birdie put, but got a par.
On another day, I believe I would have enjoyed the course more. It’s certainly a nice traditional links course with some tricky holes.
My game was not inspirational, but the score came out good. 40 on the front nine and 38 on the back for a total of 78 (gross).
13th hole challenge
Clubhouse & 18th Hole green
North Berwick Golf Club - West Links