KOHLER, Wis. -- The American Club is the only major golf resort in the country to rely on one architect to design all its courses.
Thankfully, that mad scientist named Pete Dye can conjure up one fascinating hole after another. Golf Digest ranks all four of the resort courses among the top 60 public courses in the country.
The Straits Course at Whistling Straits -- host of the 2004, 2010 and 2015 PGA Championships and the 2020 Ryder Cup -- will both frighten and enthrall the first-time player. It's a memorable, scenic walk through nearly 1,000 bunkers, with dunes higher than most Irish links and eight holes directly on Lake Michigan. Dye uses visual intimidation to mess with your mind, although windy days can destroy even the pros. Golf Digest ranks the Straits sixth among the nation's 75 toughest courses.
Carts can be taken on its sister golf course, the Irish, which shares some of the same dunes but doesn't get near the shore.
Closer to the resort, the original Blackwolf Run courses, River and Meadow Valleys, are just as strong.
A composite course of the two hosted the 1998 and 2012 U.S. Women's Open. Both were renovated prior to the 2012 tournament. Their new greens roll much quicker today.
The Sheboygan River meanders through the layout of the River, a hazard that calls for some heroic shots. The River ranks No. 32 on that same Golf Digest list of tough courses.
The Meadow Valleys isn't quite as hard or as scenic as the River and the Straits, or as unique as the Irish, so it gets overlooked a bit. But can you really call Meadow Valleys a weak link when the course ranks 60th in the country?
There's no such thing as a bad round of golf at The American Club.