Scotlands Ultimate 18

23rd December 2013

The 12th Southerness; chosen by Andrew Coltart

The course

Southerness Golf Course, the most southerly golf course in Scotland, is regularly featured in Golf Monthly as one of the top 100 courses in Britain and Ireland. It is the first golf course designed by Philip Mackenzie Ross (the very man who rebuilt Turnberry after it became an airfield during World War II), whose aim “to do nothing that would erode the natural beauty and character of this tract of wild land by the sea” was certainly accomplished. This largely undiscovered gem is the finest example of traditional golf, with its spectacular views of the Solway Coast and the Galloway Hills to the west.

This 18-hole golf course, and its clubhouse, have been through many evolutions and are enjoyed by both high and low handicappers alike.

The hole

Th12th hole is generally regarded as Southerness’ signature hole. This is a 421 yard par four that calls for accuracy and length off the tee due to its left to right dog leg and fairway bunkers. Hit it well and you will have a reasonable chance of securing an excellent par, or a bogey at worst, miss it, and all sorts of problems can await. Once you’ve negotiated the drive (and split the fairway!), the hole then opens out to a view of the green, protected by bunkers on the right, a pond to the left, a large mound guarding front left entry, and the beach ten yards behind the green – a truly memorable hole.

“Southerness is a classic links gem with the mountains as the backdrop. It’s a teasingly treacherous card wrecker of 421yards which dog legs slightly left to right. A couple of well-placed bunkers demand a precise tee shot, while the green is safely guarded by bunkers on the right, and a pond and out of bounds lurks just off the back of the green in the shape of the glorious shifting sands of The Solway Firth. A beauty. Go play it!”