Men's Handicap: 13
Women's Handicap: 11
The opening hole at the Nicklaus, while not a breather, is a gentle start of the first of several trips through the live oak and pine forests on the Colleton River peninsula. Accuracy rather than distance is the key to a smooth start. Be sure to keep the ball under the hole on this fast, undulating green.
Men's Handicap: 5
Women's Handicap: 9
Split the sentinel pines with your tee shot to set up a mid or long iron approach to this deep, narrow green. A drive too far right forces a second shot across the pond, while anything too far left brings a fairway bunker and several tall pines into play.
Men's Handicap: 11
Women's Handicap: 3
This hole is a real risk/reward par 5. By challenging the 400 yard bunker down the left side, a player may have a chance to go for the green in two. A lay up to the right side brings a fairway bunker and difficult bunkers on the right of the green into play.
Men's Handicap: 17
Women's Handicap: 15
This par 3 calls for a solid mid to short iron to the island green. Be sure to check the tide tables as this hole can be surrounded by water at high tide. As the tide moves out, the marshes around this green are filled with hundreds of sea birds that feed on the tens of thousands of fiddler crabs that live in the marshes as you cross the bridge to the green. Be sure to take your driver across the bridge as the 5th tee is also on this island.
Men's Handicap: 1
Women's Handicap: 13
Your drive must carry the salt water marsh, then skirt the marsh all along the left side of this hole. A drive down the heart of the fairway leaves a mid-to-long iron to a well-protected target with several devilish pin placements, making par a well-earned score. There is a miles long view from the green across the marshes all the way to the bridge to Hilton Head Island.
Men's Handicap: 7
Women's Handicap: 7
This is one of the toughest driving holes on the course; anything more than a slight fade blocks you from the green on your second shot. Nail one down the sprinkler line to leave a medium iron to an undulating green set between three bunkers and a pond to the right. The towering pines next to the pond are a favorite nesting place for blue herons.
Men's Handicap: 9
Women's Handicap: 5
By challenging the bunkers on the left of the landing area with the tee shot, the second shot becomes easier as the fairway is split in two about 130 yards short of the green by a bunker and live oak. A second shot to the right sides avoids the lake to the left and sets up an easier approach shot down the length of the green.
Men's Handicap: 15
Women's Handicap: 17
This long par 3 looks benign, but its plateau-like green with a narrow front and steep sides repels any shot that does not land squarely on its small surface. Check the wind carefully as the marsh and river beyond the green can affect the wind direction.
Men's Handicap: 3
Women's Handicap: 1
A sharp dogleg left, this par 4 requires a well-placed drive over the marsh to a landing area that is larger than it appears from the tee. The second shot calls for a mid-to-long iron over more marsh to a peninsula-like green that is virtually engulfed by wetland grasses. Another hole that looks more intimidating at high tide as the the green is virtually surrounded by water.
Men's Handicap: 2
Women's Handicap: 2
This three-shot par 5, inspired by #17 at Baltusrol where Nicklaus won his fourth U.S. Open in 1980, demands three solid shots to reach a difficult green that drops off on three sides. Anything less will find one of two sets of cross-bunkers that border the landing area for the second shot.
Men's Handicap: 10
Women's Handicap: 14
The 11th returns to the marshes along Colleton River. Place your tee shot in the left side of the fairway to stay clear of the live oak and trees that guard the right side all the way to the green. Keep any shot short of the green to the left as the marsh intrudes on the right side short of the green. A chance for a birdie but trouble lurks all the way to the green.
Men's Handicap: 14
Women's Handicap: 16
This hole requires a carry over marsh that is water-filled at high tide to an angled green protected by sand and a small oak. Surrounded by oaks and palmettos, this hole features four separate teeing areas. Front left and back right pin positions make this green one of the toughest targets, and most beautiful holes on the course.
Men's Handicap: 12
Women's Handicap: 8
This par 4 requires a carry over or along a long lake. A large sand covered waste area ends the landing area on the right side and must be avoided. A notable feature of this hole is a long-time osprey nest in the large pine on the right side of the lake that is a favorite fishing ground for the osprey.
Men's Handicap: 8
Women's Handicap: 10
This hole opens the stunning closing five holes played through the sand dunes along the deep water Colleton River. Play your tee shot through a chute of towering pines to reach the wide open links land with its variable coastal breezes. Depending on the wind, you will hit either a careful lay-up or a strong second shot over a partially hidden cross-bunker to the narrow, well-protected green.
Men's Handicap: 16
Women's Handicap: 12
This short par 4 plays towards the beautiful Nicklaus Clubhouse down a valley surrounded by sand dunes over a Pine Valley-type natural area. The wide, shallow, elevated green angles away from you. Swirling winds make club and shot selection critical on this devilish hole.
Men's Handicap: 4
Women's Handicap: 4
This par 4 plunges downward from an elevated tee and turns left between a foreboding set of fairway bunkers on the left and sand dunes on the right. The hole continues downward towards the beautiful Colleton River and a green set amongst a series of natural dunes. The typical westerly wind leaves a long second shot to the generous green.
Men's Handicap: 18
Women's Handicap: 18
Thrust against the river's edge, this is one of the most beautiful and at times, treacherous par 3's in the Lowcountry. When the wind is up, play a good Scottish knockdown to the front, left portion of the green. Long and right are dead. Keep a keen eye on the river for the dolphins that often feed along this hole.
Men's Handicap: 6
Women's Handicap: 6
This closing hole skirts the right marsh from tee to green, requiring two well-executed shots to a generous green protected on the right by sand and tidal salt-marsh. If the 16th hole plays into the wind, the 18th hole should play downwind and vice versa. A strong finishing hole on which many matches will be decided.