FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Kitty Hawk, NC, Sea Scape Golf Links

Sep 1, 2005
2005 / September 2005

The Outer Banks of North Carolina — stretching 90 miles from Virginia to the islands of Ocracoke and Portsmouth — is famous for its wide beaches and great surf. It’s a fragile strip of sand, measuring less than half a mile wide at some points, that cuts between a number of brackish sounds and the open Atlantic Ocean. With some stretches of its barrier islands lying 20 miles from the North Carolina mainland, the Outer Banks is accessible only by boat, plane and a few bridges. Still, it’s grown considerably in the past 15 years.

The area also has historical significance as the site of the “Lost Colony” at Roanoke. In May of 1587, English settlers established a colony here. Its leader, John White, returned to England for supplies and to recruit more settlers. When he arrived back at the colony three years later, all traces of the settlement had mysteriously vanished.

The famed pirate Blackbeard knew the waters here well. The ocean floor off the coast of the barrier islands — it’s called the “Graveyard of the Atlantic” — is strewn with the wrecks of ships that have run aground in these tumultuous waters. The Outer Banks is also home to Kill Devil Hills, the site where Wilbur and Orville Wright accomplished the first powered flight, on Dec. 17, 1903.

Here’s also where you’ll find the Sea Scape Golf Links, in the town of Kitty Hawk. Opened in 1968, Sea Scape is the second oldest course on the Outer Banks. Due to its location, dune grass comes into play on most holes, and the wind has to be considered on virtually every shot. You’ll see the ocean from 15 of Sea Scape’s 18 holes. The course was designed by Art Wall, former Masters champion, and sports bentgrass greens and Bermuda grass fairways. Under the direction of Paragon Construction, the 1997 course renovation involved adding and moving trees, adding several waste areas and constructing Scottish-style bunkers to create a layout closer to that of a true links course.

Sea Scape’s sister course, Kilmarlic (http://www.kilmarlic.com), is located just over the Wright Memorial Bridge. Kilmarlic gets its name from one of the ill-fated ships that sank off the coast, leaving its cargo of whiskey barrels to wash ashore. The course has substantially more water that Sea Scape and is surrounded by far more trees.


Hole 1 (579 yards, par 5)
Long

Aptly named, this hole was my nemesis each of the three times I played the course. Off the tee, it appears simple enough: a straight hole that requires three equally straight and long shots to the green. But balls seem to gravitate to the left side of the fairway, and beyond that to the rough and to the sea oats and dune grass. The right side of the fairway is equally covered with scrub brush, small trees and dunes. Some 20 yards from the green is a mound of dune grass that may come into play, since it blocks the right half of the fairway. On the left of the fairway is another dune area, ready to catch errant shots to the green. The green itself is straightforward, but does have a slight undulation at the forward right side, sloping to the back.

Hole 3 (542 yards, par 5)
Bunkers Hill

Your tee shot is vital on this hole, as it is a dogleg right. Position “A” would be slightly left of center, so you have a clear shot to the second landing area, or “big dogs” could possibly go for the green. Again, dune grass, scrub, and small trees can interfere with your game, as the hole is entirely surrounded. A series of traps guards the entrance to the green.

Hole 5 (525 yards, par 4)
Roon the Ben

I am not sure from where this name derives, but many a ball can end up like the “Lost Colony” of Roanoke. You can either blow your tee shot through the fairway, or try to cut the dogleg left and reach the “shmoo” — a golf term for swampy or grassy overgrowth. Those of you who carefully position your tee shot have a relatively easy shot to the green, which is downhill all the way. A low area will catch slicing shots to the green on the right side.

Hole 9 (146 yards, par 3)
Oasis

This is an elevated tee box with a huge drop to the green. Winds can play havoc with your club selection. The green stands with very little rough around it, and errant shots will make their way to the sand below and may be difficult to find. It’s a good idea to fire a provisional if there is any doubt. The green is long and oval shaped, sloping to the front.

Hole 11 (475 yards, par 5)
Plateau

Although not the most difficult handicap hole, Plateau has strong prevailing winds that many feel make it the most challenging one on the course. It’s long, and your tee shot needs to reach the top of the flat landing area without catching the bunkers on the left or the brush on the right. Making this hole in two is a challenge, as it is uphill all the way. Those not selecting enough club to the green will find two bunkers eager to catch them if they fall short.

Hole 15 (420 yards, par 4)
Gorse Ridge

From the tee box, you cannot see the green because this is a dogleg right and uphill all the way to the landing area. Two fairway bunkers lie to the right, ready to snare those trying to cut the corner; a large waste area sits on the left. A thicket of brush and brambles meets any shot left or right on this hole. Your second shot to the green needs to be accurate, as it lies to the right of the fairway, close to the thicket.

Hole 17 (215 yards, par 3)
Waters Edge

This long par 3 requires accuracy off the tee box, or yours will join the graveyard of golf balls (which includes a few from my group) in the water. A tee shot that slices to any degree will find the water. Fortunately, there is a rather large bunker to the right of the green that helps catch rolling shots that would otherwise fall into the drink. The green is elevated on the back left side and, when the pin is placed there, makes for interesting putting.

Hole 18 (342 yards, par 4)
Cup’s Decision

Again, the tee shot is important here, as you can easily block yourself out of a clean shot to the green if you are too far left. Tee shots too far right can roll down the embankment and out of play. Your second shot on the dogleg left to the green is nearly blind: it lies above you and is protected by a huge waste bunker in front and a larger one to the left. Out-of-bounds both left and right comes into play due to houses built alongside the course.

SEA SCAPE GOLF LINKS
300 Eckner St.
Kitty Hawk, NC 27949
tel 252 261 2158
http://www.seascapegolf.com

Introducing

FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Explore Excursions

#globility

Insta Feed
Daily
Feb 23, 2024

The Radical: A New Boutique Hotel, Opens in Asheville, North Carolina’s, River Arts District

Once an abandoned 1923 constructed warehouse in Asheville, North Carolina, it took a creative group of designers, artists, musicians, chefs and business folks to transform a neglected, 100-year-old structure into one of Asheville’s most interesting and daring hotel projects.

Fill Your Heart with Ireland

Whether it's the people, the craic (fun) or the coasts, travelers always find something to love about the island of Ireland. What fills your heart?

February 2024
Feb 23, 2024

Pickle Up: Get in on America’s Fastest Growing Sport

Early on, pickleball had something to do with pickles. Pickles the dog, that is. In one story, the game was named for a family dog that ran off with the ball between sets.

Daily
Feb 23, 2024

Hôtel Norman Opens Near the Top of Champs Elysées

Located a short walk from the Arc de Triomphe, Olivier Bertrand recently opened Hôtel Norman for those looking to explore the city.

Why Buy Annual Travel Insurance?

One affordable plan can protect an entire year of trips: business or pleasure, short or long, domestic or international.

Daily
Feb 23, 2024

JW Marriott Hotel Mexico City Polanco Completes Renovations

JW Marriott Hotel Mexico City Polanco recently completed renovations of its entrances, lobby, culinary concepts and meeting space. This marks the final stage of the renovation, which began in 2021 with the revitalization of its 269 guestrooms and 45 suites.

Daily
Feb 21, 2024

Make Alberta, Canada, Your Next Wellness Getaway

Rich in mountains, prairies, forests and hot springs, Alberta, Canada, takes nature and wellness travel to a whole new level. Combine the beauty of this western Canadian province with relaxation and you’re in for a treat.

Share Your Travel Preferences with Global Traveler in a Short Survey & Win

Learning more about our readers’ travel habits and preferences ensures Global Traveler delivers the content you desire. As the travel industry has adapted and changed over the last few years, it’s more important than ever to connect. To best meet your short- and long-term travel content needs, please help us!

eFlyer Reviews
Feb 21, 2024

Amantaka Review

You know what you’re going to get at an Aman hotel, and also you don’t. Expect peerless service, obsessive attention to detail, architectural elegance worthy of a fashion magazine, a holistic approach to wellness and astounding levels of comfort. But each property is also intimately connected to its setting, and that’s where the surprises lie. For instance, finding yourself on your knees on a sidewalk in Luang Prabang handing out sticky rice to Buddhist monks at 5:30 a.m. isn’t something we expected.