Hunting for pearls at Sugarloaf Golf Club
CARABASSETT VALLEY, Maine – If you play Sugarloaf Golf Club here, then you’ll quickly learn all about Robert Trent Jones Jr.’s ‘String of Pearls’.
Jones designed the course about 20 years ago. The string consists of Nos. 10-15 that wind along the southern branch of the Carabassett River (some say ‘pearls’ come from all the boulders that are strewn along the riverbed and take up position along side, or in the middle of, the holes.
It’s as impressive a series of holes as you’ll find anywhere. No. 10 is an easy par 4 with breathtaking views (and a tee shot to a fairway 165-feet below). No. 11 is a par 3 equally as elevated. No. 12 is a reachable par 5 with the river running down its left hand side. No. 13 is a longish par 4 that’s narrow and sloping. Nos. 14 and 15 are the signatures, a par 4 and par 3, respectively, that each include greens completely surrounded by the rocky river, giving golfers two very demanding forced carries.
Jones as had a little friendly squabble with the club in recent years. The club considers No. 10 to be the course’s signature hole (tough to argue with the view). Jones says the course’s signature hole is No. 15. Who wins? Both, I guess.
When Jones a few some years back came out with his book The Golf Courses of Robert Trent Jones Jr. the cover shot is No. 15 at Sugarloaf Golf Club.
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