On Alabama coast, golf and fishing are still a winning combination
GULF SHORES, Ala. – It’s been no secret that this year’s Gulf oil spill hasn’t exactly been kind to tourism on the Gulf Coast, but by most accounts things are getting back to normal around here.
True, the beaches aren’t as crowded as they have been in recent years, and the fishing charter business is still a little slow, but according to Captain Ricky McDuffie, who runs a pretty swell cruise and game-fishing business (Sea Hunter Charters), “We may have dodged the bullet.”
The feared oil slicks were never that evident here, and McDuffie reported that so far testing in the Gulf of Mexico has shown little if any contamination of fish, and the shrimpers have been returning to work. Soon, those who like to combine fishing and golf may be testing these waters again, and it’s quite a combination.
It’s no secret that lots of golfers like fishing, and this is a great place to do both. The area boasts the largest charter fishing fleet in the world, and it is a buyer’s market right now. A half day on McDuffie’s 62-foot luxury vessel runs about $1,200, and he can take 15 or so golfing fishermen on an excursion. That’s 80 bucks a person, or the equivalent of a green fee at a high-end daily fee course.
And speaking of golf, there’s plenty of great golf among the facilities of the Gulf Shores Golf Association. So far, I’ve played Kiva Dunes golf course, Peninsula Golf and Racquet Club and Timber Creek Golf Club. All were different, and every one of them excellent tests. Plus, the courses here are extremely reasonable compared to other parts of the country.
So if you’re looking for great golf and fishing on the same trip on somewhat of a budget, you’ll be hard-pressed to beat the Gulf Shores/Mobile/Pensacola, Fla. area.
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