PLAYER'S GUIDE TO TRAIGH GOLF COURSE
course is laid out on traditional links land
next to the white sands of the Traigh beaches
from which it gets its name.
to sea, the golfer can gaze at the chain of Inner
Hebridean islands - working from the south, Muck,
Eigg , Rum and The Isle of Skye - that fill the
the steep rocks of Craig Mhor rise up out of
white clubhouse is modelled on the traditional
Highland cottage - the 'but and ben ' of generations
golfers are always welcome and can hire clubs
Captain's Caper - Tobar an Steallan - 130 yards
The first green
much longer than its yardage as it rises very
steeply from the clubhouse up onto the higher
Captain's Caper is the name of a Highland dance,
and the hole is named in honour of a former captain
of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews.
struck the first shot to open the redesigned
course in 1995. He used a three iron off a very
high tee which soared way beyond the green in
keeping with a piece of good advice for anyone
hitting an opening drive - 'for God's sake, don't
the rest of us... well, local opinion varies
hugely, but depending on weather conditions,
somewhere between a six and a nine iron will
- Spion Kop - An Sgurr - 452 yards Par 5
The second fairway
is the moment of truth for many golfers. You
are on the highest point of the course and you
have a difficult decision to make.
the men's tee, a player must either take on a
carry of nearly 200 yards hemmed in by gorse
bushes, long thick grass if you don't make it
and out of bounds on the right, or else bail
out to the left to plod round the flat country
below and make the hole play its full 452 yards.
men" generally lose this hole.
Kop was a formidably inaccessible fort in the
Boer War - the hole has similar defenses from
Road to the Isles - Rathad nan Eilean - 173 yards
Driving on the Third
the most striking feature of Traigh Golf Course
are the three short holes that require the golfer
to play down from the high dunes straight out
at the stunning view of the islands. (See
hole normally demands a full five iron into the
prevailing wind from the west - but pause as
you watch your ball plummet towards the flag
to look out at the distinctive peak of the island
of Eigg, ten miles beyond the green across the
Jimmy's Choice - Tagadh Sheumais - 257 yards Par
A relatively short par four, slightly up hill
and is another difficult choice for the big hitter
- the flag flutters through a gap carved between
two belts of gorse bushes had straddle the landing
zone for a full driver.... It is possible to
go for glory, even to reach the green, but failure
certainly means playing three off the tee.
Macdonald was the head greenkeeper at Royal Lytham
St. Annes golf course, which he prepared for
several British Opens. He was brought up near
Traigh and learned to play golf on the rudimentary
course that preceded the current layout. The
redesign benefited greatly from his experience
and knowledge of course conditions, and he selected
this as his favourite hole.
The Bridge - Alt an Asaidh - 135 yards Par 3
Bridge on the fifth
Another testing par three played out to the islands,
this time towards the Sleat peninsula on the
Isle of Skye with the Red and Black Cuillins
high tide the stream below the green fills up
to form a wide lake crossed by the wooden bridge
from which the hole gets its name - constructed
by several times club champion Hamish Smith.
McEachen's Leap - Leum MhicEachainn -
283 yards Par 4
Approach to the sixth green
hole is not a happy hunting ground for anyone
with a tendency to hook the ball - it requires
a straight drive away from dense bushes on the
left and then a carefully placed blind second
shot to a bowl green bordered by more gorse bushes.
name commemorates the heroic efforts of long-standing
member Tommy McEachen who leapt into the lake
created by the high tide to rescue an earlier
incarnation of the bridge that was beginning
to drift away towards America...
The Lang Whang - Strac Fada - 485 yards Par 5
course now changes character for a couple of
holes, as the sea is now out of sight and views
dominated by the rock and heather of the hills
rising towards Loch Morar.
is the hole to relax and take out your biggest
gun. There is plenty space and you have to go
quite badly wrong to get into trouble off the
the prevailing wind even the longest hitters
will seldom reach Lang Whang's green in two,
and the overambitious can plunge out of bounds
on either side of the fairway.
the second, and probably third, shot the message
is ' keep as right as you dare!'
Local Hero - Gaisgeach Ionadail - 367 yards Par
is a quintessential links hole - another testing
drive followed by a blind second shot requiring
anything from a four to a nine iron depending
on wind conditions.
you were hitting big on the seventh, don't get
lured into a false sense of security. Not only
is it further than it looks, but anything above
the row of white posts on hill on the right is
out of bounds so accuracy is required.
film Local Hero starring Burt Lancaster,
features scenes on the beaches in the district,
many of which are visible from the eighth green.
Anecdote: Legend has it that during the making
of the film a large lorry full of power supplies,
movie stars and make-up asked to park on the
course. Hoping for some free publicity for the
course the green keeper reluctantly agreed, only
to come back 10 minutes later to discover that
it had parked right in the middle of the fourth
tee. "I'm sorry, but that's the fourth tee!".
"But there's nowhere else..." "BUT
THAT'S THE FOURTH TEE!" "But there's
nowhere else...". Well, he didn't get to
stay there, but there again neither did Traigh
Golf Course make the film.
Hole - Traigh Mhor - Machair Thraigh
- 180 yards Par 3
Chipping home on the ninth
taking on the tee shot to the elusive final green
tightly banked down below, the golfer should
surely take one more look at the panoramic view
of the islands, the white beaches and the rugged
'Traigh Mhor' means 'mighty beach' , and why
not do another nine holes now that you know the
course before walking off the course onto the
Copyright © 1996
- 2015 Traigh Golf Course.