Extreme Golf Courses: Living the Wild Links Life

So yesterday I was on the shuttlebus from Midway Airport parking to the airport to get back to New York, and I chatted up this guy in the seat next to me, who was just leaving for a golfing tour to Indonesia. Who knew people did such a thing? So nosey girl that I am, I wanted to know: how far would people travel for a golf game? How extreme do the courses get? Here are a sampling of some extreme golf courses and some links to golf course reviews:

Ice Golfing in Greenland

Ice Golfing

Golfing without greenery? It sounds sacrilegious, but every March golf fanatics play in the World Ice Golf Championship in the small town of Uummannaq in Northern Greenland (370 miles from the arctic circle – are you cold yet?) Hardy golfers play 36 holes on a course created on glaciers and ice floes (both fluid and changing), so it’s never the same course from year to year. Bring wool socks!

Image courtesy of www.icegolfgreenland.com

Beware of Hippopatami! Golf in the Bush in Skukuza, South Africa

hippos

The sign says, “Dangerous Animals, Enter At Your Own Risk.”

Welcome to the Skukuza Golf Course, located within the Kruger National Park. Skukuza golf course was created by Kruger Park staffers in 1972 for their own use, but was recently opened to the public. If getting your balls out of the rough or sand traps isn’t dangerous enough for you, how about the added challenge of a run-in with a hippo – with razor sharp teeth and no fear of man? Pshaw you say? There are no fences around the course, so you may also encounter lions, zebras, leopards, rhinos, buffaloes, warthogs, and elephants. After you sign the mandatory indemnity form, of course. Words of wisdom from the park? If you encounter a wild animal that gives you the eye, “Do not run away! … If you run, the animal will believe that it has gained the advantage and it will be more likely to give chase.”

Some unique problems on this course include repairing divots made by giraffes and warthogs on the greens and retrieving balls lost in crocodile-infested waters.

The good news? No golfers have yet been injured or killed on the course. I find it interesting that you take your life into your hands to hit a few holes, but the course still requires “standard golf dress.”

Image courtesy of www.worldgolf.com

BYO Grass: Sandy Golfing in Coober Pedy Opal Fields Golf Club; Australia

cooberpedy

Opal mining is the chief industry in the desert town of Coober Pedy in South Australia, but some genius somewhere decided that their sandtrap of a town could also function as a golf course! In fact, golfers there must drag a slab of grass from hole to hole when they tee off! Another quirk: the course has to be oiled down with grease periodically to keep it from blowing away.

Image courtesy of www.cooberpedy.sa.gov.au

Urban Golf

urban golf

Urban golf is just like it sounds, people eschewing the manicured lawns of expensive country clubs to play in the wilds of city concrete. Urban golf (the site, anyway) was start by a few gents on the west coast and i love them because they spit on anyone who tries to capitalize on the urban golf cache, including themselves (they regularly turn down endorsement offers).

Image courtesy of www.urbangolf.org

World’s Longest Golf Course

Golf courses too short for you? In late 2008 you can sate your wanderlust on the Nullarbor Links course in Australia. The course has 18 holes played over 800 miles (with an average of 50 miles between holes), with one hole in each participating town or roadhouse along the Eyre Highway, stretching from Western Australia to South Australia.

Aircraft Carrier Golf

Gotcha. This is not yet a reality, but someone sure made a good Photoshop prototype here.

More Opinions…

Robin Sieger and Neil Laughton’s Awesome Eight: Two British friends and athletes invented the concept of the the “Awesome Eight Golf Challenge,” in which golfers must play eight of the most remote and climatically challenging courses in the world, all within the course of one year, without the use of a caddie or a cart.

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Comments

  1. Myrtle Beach Golf Says:

    50 Miles between holes? What in the H#^$$? I get tired on the average 18 holes.. Never would have thought.. Thanks for the read..

  2. Neil Cohen Says:

    Geez, there are so many new clubs on the market but with the economy, I think we need to focus on recycling. Half of the clubs on my sites free classifieds, are not even used. We just added a review section too, so you can look up the clubs in the ads. Buy of the week, brand new big bertha for 10% of the store price.

    Neil Cohens last blog post..Callaway Hyper X 460 Driver