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Latest Review

Red Bridge Golf & Country Club


"Great course"

4/15/24: Review by Steve

Red Bridge is looking good right now. We played after a morning tournament and you would never know it, course is in good condition. Greens are running super fast.

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River Oaks Golf Club
233 Broken Arrow Drive
Statesville, NC 28677
(704) 883-8724
www.golfriveroaks.com
Map & Directions

Review Rating:

3.31 stars - "Worth playing" (13 reviews)

Type:

Semi-Private

Rates:

Weekday $42, Weekend $55

Greens Turf Type:

Bermuda

Practice Area:

Elevated driving range with a view, putting and chipping area.

Description

About an hour's drive north of Charlotte, River Oaks Golf Club is set in a pristine wildlife area marked by a rolling topography, heavy tree cover and meandering streams. Renovations on the old course layout were extensive and the new championship layout takes full advantage of nature's splendor. It promises to be an enjoyable, scenic Stateville golf adventure with plenty of golf risk and reward for all levels of play. It features Bentgrass greens and Bermuda fairways. The course is about 10 minutes from Rock Barn, making it a cool 36-hole day pairing.

Notes

During a summer 2023 renovation, the course switched over to Mach 1 Bermuda grass on the greens and made significant changes to Holes No.1 and No.8. Previously in August 2006, golf course architect Ed Carton directed a multi-million dollar tee to green renovation of the golf course. It reopened for play in May 2007. The course was formerly known as Buffalo Shoals and NC National. Prime season memberships (April-September) are offered for $499 with $15 cart fees - that's a deal!

B-Man's Take

First played this course in the summer of 2020 and holy cow, I was missing out. It was a very challenging, unique courses. Hills and elevation changes make for some awesome views and fun holes. There are many memorable holes, including the 3-hole closing stretch on the front 9, starting with the dramatic downhill par 3 7th, then an impossible elevated tee shot to a postage stamp landing area on the par 4 8th and the blind tee shot and approach over a creek to the par 4 9th. The back 9 is a great mixture of risk / reward and birdie / bogey opportunities, summed up perfectly with the closing par 5 18th hole. You'll need an accurate tee shot in the fairway to have a decision about going for the guarded-by-a-creek green in two. Playing it as a 3 shot hole also requires three accurate shots with plenty of hazards and bunkers to test your nerve. This is just a fabulous layout and is now kept in good shape year-round. The rack rates are a steal, making this course one of the best values around the Piedmont.

TeeParYardageRatingSlope
Championship (Black)72643370.7137
Mens (Green)72591368.1126
Senior (Gold)72515765.1111
Ladies (Gold)72515769.8127
View the complete scorecard for this course

Links

Facebook Page - Official Facebook page
Superintendent's Blog - The golf superintendent regular posts on current course conditions and maintenance plans, with pictures.

Most Recent Reviews

  • 4/22/23 - Review by Queen City Golfer

    "Worth playing"

    Played in an event there and LOVED the layout. Sounded like they will be closed for a little for renovations but highly recommend making the drive up to play this track. Difficult course but lots of fun.

    Read The Review
  • 4/19/23 - Review by Teresa

    "Below average"

    Have returned to play here a couple more times this spring. Not a lot has changed except the bent grass greens were very firm, which I found odd. The course will be closed all summer until post Labor Day for green conversion and they are operating on 16 holes until mid-june when the conversion starts as they are reconfiguring 2 holes currently. It is my hope they alter a couple greens during the renovation. Greens on #6 & #9 need restructuring since many near perfect approach shots, even many putts, end up in the creek or marsh hazard due to their current lack of fringe and slope. Most Fairway grasses this last visit were fine, except for the landing areas on #10 & #14 where ALL the cart traffic is directed. I was hoping for cleaner Golf Carts this year however they were nastier & more grimy than before. Hopefully after all the construction is complete .. next year these things will get the attention they need.

    Read The Review
  • 4/6/23 - Review by sd84

    "Great course"

    The improvements on the course continue. A lot to tell here. First, the course is closing around June 12th to re-do all of the greens in Mach 1 Bermuda (I think that's the right kind, it was used at Streamsong) with the plan to re-open around Labor Day. Some updates to the clubhouse and driving range are also part of the plan. In addition, they have been building new tees on several holes (back tee on par-5 18th, new tee to stretch par-3 11th to nearly 220! if you are brave, new tees on 3 open for play). A lot of sod has been put down in places to fill in bad spots and around tees and greens. All of the tree stumps that were still there a couple of years ago from the removal of hundreds of trees on the parallel holes 12-15 on the back nine have been removed. And finally, they have begun work on moving the 1st green back behind the pond where it was originally and moving the 8th green back and to the right to a higher spot to avoid the flooding problem the creek on that hole has presented over the years. This course is a great value and definitely worth the drive to get there.

    Read The Review
  • 7/17/22 - Review by Slick

    "Average"

    Grasses on the course are currently great (although slightly thin & compacted in several fairways on the back 9 due to 80% of the carts following the same track). NOBODY here follows the 90deg rule and prob 35% still park on Tee Boxes. As noted in a prior review, course conditions are not the current issue at ROaks. It’s the totally unstructured operation of the place. Every visit we have to sort thru the carts to find any that actually have Sand in the Divot Bottles, and or, no sticky residue from prior use. The clientele currently using River Oaks is all over the board. Due to its troubling history but current great course conditions you’ll find a wide Range of Folks playing here. One group will be wearing sleeveless Wife Beater Tee Shirts, cut-off Jeans with 20 yr old tennis shoes while the next group very well dressed. You’ll find a new $70,000 Truck parked next to a 40 year old delapidated one with 2 Giant ‘Don’t Tread on Me” Flags sticking of of the Bed. Guess that’s where some of the Dogs I’ve seen on the course in Carts rode on their way to the course! River Oaks has reached a transition period to where it needs to decide which direction it wishes to pursue. With very little effort RO could be come a Nice Golf Club. Adding Water & A Bathroom on the course, repairing several dangerous delapidated cart Bridges, keeping the Clubhouse Restroom presentable, replacing the 3 unusable/broken ceiling fans on the back patio, maintaining the Cart Fleet and enforcing several common Industry Course Rules would go a long way in upgrading the place!

    Read The Review
  • 6/8/22 - Review by Slick

    "Average"

    This COURSE has a long (often rocky) history, now called River Oaks it has continued to improve each year under current ownership. Condition wise it can now compete with many of the other Public courses in the area. The primary issue at RO is now not the course conditions as much as it is everything else. For many years this course was a goat track due to bankruptcy and ownership changes. During these down times the only patrons using it were lower income golfers or new golfers just looking to get on a course. Current ownership (approx 10 yrs) has brought the course and the clubhouse back, however the general environment of the place and its clientele has not been elevated to a level resembling a higher-end or nicer golf club. It operates on a skeleton staff… Thus many things suffer.. including dirty carts, dirty or unorganized facilities (ie. bathroom) and little to no monitoring of the course nor cart management on the course. The Maintenance Superintendent is one of the hardest working guys you’ll find, ownership leaves the majority of decisions up to him, however he too is short handed. Many areas of the course struggle due to cart traffic with little to no cart controls. Too many patrons drive on to Tee Boxes and park greenside, ignoring cart paths. These actions are the primary issues for compacted grass & soil in areas that harm your game the most. As for the course layout… it’s an enjoyable course that has been altered several times. IMHO hole#10 needs a bulldozer taken to it (and the extremely rocky hillside cart path leaving the primary Tees is ridiculous). The landing area for drives on this hole is severely steep, given that the cart path dumps all cart into the center of this fairway conditions can be rock hard. Several of my near perfect drives have landed near the 100 yard marker but ended up rolling backwards down the hill some 50 to 75 yards into several rough areas or holes. These compacted areas can be found on numerous holes and approaches. River Oaks can be an enjoyable golf outing, and as mentioned earlier the grasses on the course have reached a level rivaling any Public course. This place could very easily become a Top Course, however it never will until Staff & Ownership understand what’s required to be a Top Course with Quality Facilities, Clean Carts, Respectful/Knowledgeable Patrons, and more restrictive course rules found on Higher-end Courses. River Oaks… Give it a try.. I’ll bet up find it interesting if nothing else.

    Read The Review

Updates From the Forum

  • 06/01/23 - B-Man posted "Aeration and Renovation Updates"

    A few Aeration dates to keep in mind: Stonebridge: 5/30-5/31 Monroe CC: 6/6-6/7 Renovation updates: River Oaks is closing in the next 2 weeks until Labor Day for renovation of 2 holes (#1 and #8) as well as the switchover from Bentgrass to Mach 1 Bermuda greens. The Revival at the Crescent is closing July 5th for a similar conversion to Mach 1 Bermuda on the greens. They also are targeting a Labor Day re-opening.
    View this thread
  • 03/23/22 - B-Man replied to "Aerification Dates - 2022"

    River Oaks: May 24th
    View this thread
  • 06/12/07 - Fisher replied to "River Oaks in Statesville"

    I played River Oaks on Sat., 6/9 and never played it as NC National. This assessment is based on the present layout of the course.

    River Oaks (ROGC) has the potential to be one of the finest courses on the I-40 corridor west of 77. At only 6400 yards from the back tees, it’s a fair test of shotmaking & club selection. You really need to pick the right clubs on this course. That's why it can be one of the best in that area.

    Keep in mind, and I had to keep telling myself, that ROGC is a NEW course, from tee to green. A lot of the greens are new & the staff may still be in the process of marking yardages. You can tell that ROGC laid down a lot of sod to build those greens. They wanted the least amount of time for grow-in so they can begin to get revenue from play, so they laid down sod instead of seed to a lot of the greens on the front 9. Considering the immaturity of some greens, most rolled exceptionally well, and consistent. I was pleasantly surprised!

    The 1st Hole used to be a long par-4 back in the pre-ROGC era. Now, it’s a short, but fair 320-yd par 4. The creek no longer is in play, but the new green is. It's shallow from front to back (I paced off 16 steps from the front until the hole drops off into the abyss). An accurate short iron approach on Hole #1 will reward you with an easy birdie opportunity. If you miss long or left...you'll scramble for bogey or worse, make a drop for double. I could be wrong, but #1 may be the only significant change on the front 9 until you finish the side.

    My favorite hole by far is #8. A 400-yd par-4 from an elevated tee, and a tee shot that forces you to hit a high-draw. The visual aspect of this tee shot is amazing!! You have to play it yourself to believe it. The fairway looks tiny, but a high tee shot opens it up. Go ahead a rip driver, you have plenty of room, just don’t miss it right. A pushed tee ball on this hole is gone forever.

    The 9th is the epitome of penal golf! Before the change, it must’ve been a short, easy par-4. Now, it’s a daunting, 220 yd par-3. You have to carry your shot all the way to the green. Any short shots are lost into the ravine the fronts the green & the sides. Higher handicappers will want to take advantage of the fairway and hit their tee shots & hope for a close approach to a one-putt par. Otherwise, you’ll stare at double or worse if your tee shot is short. Stronger players may want to hit an extra club & play to miss long; there’s a natural “backstop” behind the green. Although this hole plays a full club less, you still need to catch it all to get it on the putting surface.

    From what I understand, the back-9 still remains as it once was. Again, it’s a test of club selection and accuracy. Length off the tee is not a significant part of scoring on this course. For example, a short par-3 (127 yds) on the back-9 requires two- to three-clubs LESS on approach because of its severe elevation. I hit easy SW where it should have been smooth LW...heck, if my putter had one degree more loft, I would have hit it.

    The 200 yard par-3, 17th is another hole where you end up scratching your head to exactly how far you need to hit it. It’s a flat hole, with water on the left side. Looks can be deceiving! Play your shot to the right half of the green to eliminate the hazard and greenside bunkers.

    My only criticism is that you always question your yardages on many of the holes, especially the par-3’s. My recommendation to the course is to send its assistant pro or superintendent to laser each hole from at least 5-10 different spots and mark it down, get in on paper & hand it to every player that checks in. That would have helped me tremendously. If you have a range finder...bring it!!

    Otherwise, River Oaks can be the place to go if you’re looking to play a great mountain style course but also challenge your shotmaking & on course management. Although not as long as Skybrook or Verdict Ridge, River Oaks can belong to that class in several years, if not less.
    View this thread


Latest Forum Post

2024 Charlotte Golf Survey

By B-Man on 4/12/24

I've launched this year's version of the Charlotte Golf Survey where you get to rate all of the public golf courses within an hour of Charlotte. And just like last year, if you submit the survey, you will be entered into a drawing to win a round of golf with me a The Club...

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List of Courses
Latest Review

Red Bridge Golf & Country Club


"Great course"

4/15/24: Review by Steve

Red Bridge is looking good right now. We played after a morning tournament and you would never know it, course is in good condition. Greens are running super fast.

Latest Forum Post

2024 Charlotte Golf Survey

By B-Man on 4/12/24

I've launched this year's version of the Charlotte Golf Survey where you get to rate all of the public golf courses within an hour of Charlotte. And just like last year, if you submit the survey, you will be entered into a drawing to win a round of golf with me a The Club...

About The B-Man
The B-Man himself
TripCaddie
B-Man on the 19th tee at Payne's Valley - Big Cedar Lodge with TripCaddie
Join Me on a Ready-Made Golf Trip with TripCaddie in 2024!
Sign Up Your Group!
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