This former Carolina Trail course is about 10 miles south of the NC-SC border on I-77. It was designed by PGA Tour star Hale Irwin with the tee box names honoring his Major championship victories. Nestled along the Catawba River, this layout plays difficult off the tee with marshes, wetlands and plain ol' water hazards threatening on a majority of the holes.
Waterford came under new management in 2014 and memberships & discounts can now be shared across its former sister courses in the old Carolina Trail -- The Divide, Tradition, Highland Creek, and Birkdale.
Nice course, but tough. If you are having trouble with wayward tee shots, stay away from Waterford or bring several sleeves of golf balls. I've played this course in a couple of tournaments and one 36-hole day on my own. The holes are all very unique and exciting to play, but you've got to be accurate off the tee. This course was in great shape every time I played it. I consider it the best maintained of the 4 main Carolina Trail courses (that excludes Highland Creek). My favorite hole is the 548yd par 5 2nd hole, simply because I play it well. The #1 handicap, 423yd par 4 13th hole lives up to its billing. Heavily sloped fairway is tough to land, then you have a long approach to a sloped green protected by a bunker and creek/ditch.
|Championship (Winged Foot)||72||6942||72.9||137|
This was my first round back at Waterford in many years. I had heard good things about conditions recently and they were in fact pretty good, especially the greens. The Bermuda greens were all in good shape, pretty consistent and fairly quick. The size, slopes and undulations in the greens make them challenging to putt but in my experience they roll true. Tee box conditions were just okay, fairways were fine but some had rough spots, bunkers were good, but oh boy, the rough! Perhaps it was because of the U.S. Open last week, but the Bermuda rough had not been mowed throughout the course, even around the greens, which made those shots very penalizing. In some cases, you had to walk right near your ball to find it because they tended to settle down in the grass to where you could barely see the top of the ball. The one thing I remembered about this layout that is still true – it's very easy to lose golf balls here. Every hole feels tight and sloped, with trees, brush, creeks, rocks and other unplayable areas awaiting errant shots – many of which are blind. Several guys in my group hit seemingly good shots that bounded into trouble anyway. The "rub of the green" was evident throughout our round and it felt very British Open-esque. There are some fun holes in this layout with risk-reward choices to make. So if you know the risk (because you've played here before or have a GPS phone app like TheGrint), then it's cool to try for the reward on some of those shots. The par 5's on the back 9 along with some of the short par 4's were my favorite holes. Pace of play was not good. Our group had a 1:10 tee time and times were running about 10-15 minutes behind when we started. We finished just after 6:00, a shade under 5 hours. While the price was great ($56) considering the condition of the greens and course overall, I won't be in a hurry to come back and play Waterford again. With so much trouble on every hole, it can be a frustrating round of golf.Read The Review
This golf course use to be a goat track until the past year or so. The course is well maintained and kind of a hidden gem down in Rock Hill. The greens were immaculate with perfect collars and some thick rough around the greens. There were a few fairways that had some dead spots however they were top dressed and the course was working on them. Will continue to go back as long as the conditions continue to be great!Read The Review
So this is like cheating because I'm partial to Waterford as this is my practice course and I walk it a lot, but as some one who has played this course over the years and seen it evolved, it's definitely one of my favorites. There has been a lot of $$$ invested in Waterford, especially over the past two years and it is in pristine condition (not that it wasn't before). Unfortunately they do not allow walking on the weekends anymore but it's a great layout with beautiful views on some holes of the Catawba river (hole # 2, par 5). Like I said I'm partial to this course as I know where to hit the ball to stay out of trouble but the course is always challenging! If you are in the Rock Hill area (right over the border) give this course a go you will not be disappointed. By the way the staff are aces in my book and Ty the GM is the man!!!!Read The Review
I've been taking lessons from Brent who is the Pro here. This course was designed by Hale Irwin and was recently purchased by David Tepper, owner of the Carolina Panthers. Today, I was able to use my GolfNow discount app for a $35 afternoon tee time. It was so smooth and easy, I just gave my name and the tee time and he confirmed the time and that it was pre-paid. The course is better than average. The fairways are in excellent condition as are most of the greens. There were several tee boxes that were a little ragged. I really like the way the course played. The fairways are wide open and there is very little water that comes into play. There is a driving range on-site as well as a putting area. A little interesting that there are no holes on the practice putting surface, they use markers with weighted bottoms that you can move around on the putting surface. The carts were clean and worked well and there is plenty of parking. It will be interesting to see what Mr Tepper does if anything to change or update this course.Read The Review
Really a great place to play...difficult but not unfair...really fun. I'll be back more often, definitely recommend others play here.Read The Review