Friday, August 08, 2008

Triggs Memorial Golf Course Is A Gem In Rhode Island


What's a public course, designed by Donald Ross in 1930, once hosted the US Open and costs less than $40 dollars to play 18 holes mid-week? That would be Triggs Memorial Golf Course in Providence, RI. I hesitated to write this blog for one reason - I plan to play there a lot and I don't want more people showing up at this public gem.

I hadn't played this course for more than 30 years and had completely forgotten what it's like, until yesterday when I played with some friends. My jaw dropped right on the 1st tee. This thing looked like an old course - slightly meandering fairway with beautiful fairway bunkers flanked on the sides and back with natural grasses up to 15 inches high. I thought I was in Scotland. And the trees! In case you haven't noticed, most all the great courses from the Mississippi east have beautiful old trees. Triggs is filled with them. They are big enough to play under, but they shape every hole, dictating landing areas and approaches. The greens are classically undulating and sloped. Get on the wrong side of the pin and you've just given yourself another stroke 4 out of 5 times. And the greens have marvelous shapes and contours and are set at interesting angles to the fairway approach. They also have the rough high enough around the greens to penalize, but not so high that a decent golfer can't the ball close.

There are no tricked-up holes - with the exception of 16. By tricked-up, I mean those ridiculous short par 4's that have 90 degree turns in them. And I may be unfairly dinging 16 here. It does have a tight turn to it, but the real problem is two massive oaks on the corner. But you can still sneak it by them on the left or even go under them. I'm probably sour grapes because I took my first double of the day there.

After we finished playing I made the comment that if Triggs was private - meaning fewer rounds played and more money for course maintenance - it would be the best course in the state. The other golfers agreed immediately. But of course, I couldn't play it then. Triggs Memorial is a real gem. It just fits the eye perfectly. Everything is in the right proportion and it's in great shape for a public course. Bottom line; if you're from out of state play it when you're here. You won't be disappointed. If you're in state, forget I ever wrote this and go play somewhere else, please.

2 comments:

Bill said...

Great sounding course. Is there a website we can check out or by chance do you have any pics you can share?

John said...

Bill, thanks for giggling my brain. I've attached a picture from their website and linked Triggs Memorial in the first sentence to their website. If you get the chance to play this course take it!