By mbills1015 on 9/1/06
"Is the course worth all the hype?" With as much hoopla there is surrounding this course, could it possibly live up to the expectation? One thing that is definitely unique and part of the adventure is getting on the course, especially if you are a non-New York resident. There are a couple tee-times reserved early on in the morning for those who want to sleep in their cars overnight in a queue. This used to be the ONLY way to get on Bethpage, adding to its allure. Since their first U.S. Open and the publicity that surrounded the course, they have now opened up tee times by phone.
If you are not a New York resident then you must call through BethpageGÇÖs automated tee time register and attempt to book a tee time. You can only call 48 hours in advance. If you are a New York resident, you get 2 weeks to work with. As popular as this course is, it takes many, many phone calls. In fact when we called on Thursday we could not find a tee time and only by a stroke of luck did we decide to call back again on Friday. With that phone call we struck pay dirt, an afternoon tee time.
The one thing about Bethpage that far outweighs any premier golf course is the rates. The weekday rates for a state-resident are $41 and for non- resident $82. On the weekend you are looking at $51 for state-resident and $102 for non. These rates are solely for walking, the course does not allow golf carts at all. There is a $4 reservation fee if you call ahead, otherwise you can make the drive and hope you can get yourself on. I would recommend paying the $4 and setting the tee time. There would be nothing worse than driving to the middle of Long Island and not getting to play.
Now... about the course. Designed by A.W. Tillinghast, Bethpage opened in May of 1936. The course was given 3 million from the USGA and was renovated from 1997-1998 by Reese Jones. The atmosphere walking up to the first tee could not get any better, especially with the signature Bethpage Sign which reads. "The Black Course is an extremely difficult course which we recommend only for highly skilled golfers." Right from the start you know that this course will test your game in every faucet. As you might expect with a top-notch course, it is immaculate. From the tee box to the greens you will not be disappointed with the maintenance of the golf course. The rough is long and thick, but still fair for the average golfer. The course is extremely long with narrow fairways and extremely large and in some areas deep bunkers. To be honest I thought there was going to be more water on the course, but there is only one hole where water actually comes into play. Because of the length you will be hitting a variety of irons into moderate sized greens, surrounded by large bunkers. All of your tee shots will demand a great deal of accuracy and power.
The signature hole for me would be the par5 fourth. This par 5 has three tiers and each tier is covered with bunkers. It is long and without a well-placed tee shot it can be a very, very long hole. The course really is a true test and will make you use every club in your bag. Much is said about how hard the course is, but rarely people speak about how fair it is. The greens are not ridiculously sloped; there are not any hidden streams. What you see is what you get, and what you get is a great golfing experience.
Overall it is a world-class establishment and no golfer will walk away being disappointed. With the US open championship returning in 2009, you know that the course will be in great shape no matter what time of year. With four other courses on site this facility would be ideal for any golf trip. All courses are up to the same level of maintenance and prices are extremely reasonable. If you are interested in making the trip to Bethpage State Park the information you need should be on the oobgolf course page, here.
[ comments ]
dang that is one of the hardest courses in the world !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Exhausted? Wait until the closing holes. Your done...
Few golf courses (in fact few things in life) live up to the hype. This course absolutely does. In every way, it was by far the toughest course I have ever played. From narrow fairways to deep rough to pristine bunkers to lightning fast greens (not to mention the length and up-and-down of the walk) this course is everything everyone says and more. What struck me most was looking back at the championship tees and just thinking to myself.... "are you f**king kidding me?"
I played bethpage in the begining of the season. The greens were a little bumpy but what can you expect at 3 in the afternoon. It is an amazing course and I would recomend it to anyone who is really good at golf. I shot 68 from the tips and loved every minute of it! If you have put hundreds of hours playing it on tiger woods you didnt waist your time it is exact! I would rank this course as my third favorite golf experiance behind playing Seminole in Juno Beach and Belgrade Lakes Golf Club Belgrade Lakes, Me.
Bernie Duffer says:
I played Bethpage Black for the first time 23 years ago. We arrived at 5am on a Saturday morning. I was given a paper slip with the number 213 on it. We ended up with an 8:30am tee time. It took 6 hours to play. The course was wonderful but badly in need of upgraded maintenance. It it hard to describe how much better the course is since it was renovated for the U.S. Open. Don't forget the other four coursed at Bethpage. They are more playable and they are all wonderful.
Rob Hausman says:
I grew up playing Olympia Fields CC in Chicago. Out to Long Island in 2007 for work and took the opportunity to play Bethpage Black. It was 2pm and raining, but tee'd off anyway. I played he back tees and show an 81. It was not as difficult as I thought it was going to be, but I think it was partly due to the wet fairways (did no run through since the ball plugged alot). Great condition, nice long layout, big greens. I am not a big fan of the walking only. I do think it is very over priced for what you get. For 1/2 the cost, I can play Cogg Hill #4 (Dubs) on a weekend. It was nice to add a 4th US Open course to my list of played courses though. If it was a little cheaper...I WOULD PLAY IT AGAIN.
James Nokes says:
FYI, Dubsdread is $150...that is not half the price of BPB
Ha ha. Gotta like these guys who say they shot 68 from the tips on a US Open course but they show no scores on their pages. Why they're posting on this site and not playing on tour is beyond me - LOL.
I like that guy who shot 68 at The Black. I'll take him on right now because I know he's a dreamer.
To the guy who loved every minute of his 68? Stick to your video games bud.
Played the black two years ago, crawlled off this awesome course with my pride in the trash can and a 103. The other guy I played with had his dad carrying his bag, asked me to sign his card. He shot 79. No kidding, he wanted to see if he could break 80, he just turned 13 that month. Still looking for my ego in the landfill!
He meant 68 for the front nine.....
Jorge Calle says:
Great Course, Walked and carried (big mistake) feet hurt for 2 days.
We played Black from the back tees, shot a 97. very proud of my score.
I highly recommended it for the 18 handicaps and below.
I probably won't be back but it is off my golf bucket list.
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