FX Excursions

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

Powells Point, NC, Kilmarlic Golf Club

Oct 1, 2010
2010 / October 2010

As a frequent traveler to the Outer Banks, I have played nearly every course within a stone’s throw of my base, Kitty Hawk. Kilmarlic Golf Club, located just over the bridge connecting the mainland to Kitty Hawk and the rest of the Outer Banks, is within reach for beachgoers desiring a round of golf while on vacation.

The club’s name originated with a local legend. A ship laden with whiskey from Kilmarlic, Scotland, ran aground in the treacherous waters of the “Graveyard of the Atlantic” off the North Carolina coast. Locals “rescued” the casks of Scotch whiskey and named the area Kilmarlic in celebration of this gracious gift. Whether or not this story is based in fact, you will want to raise a glass to Tom Steele, the course designer, after you complete your round.

The course is a thicket of giant oaks, pine trees and more wetlands than you care to search through for your ball. The Albemarle Sound borders the course, where more than 300 acres of wetlands and coastal ponds will test your skills.

Kilmarlic plays 6,412 yards, and since this is a placement course, first-timers will want to replay many holes to correct wrong decisions. There are plenty of places to “go for it,” as many of the holes offer a risk/reward scenario; however, the risk often turns into disaster. I have played this course more times than I can recall, and I must say, the pro shop staff run a well-oiled machine.


Hole 4

(526 yards, par 5)

The fourth is the most difficult hole, not just because it is ranked the No. 1 handicap, but also because it has so many areas that test your game and boldness of play. First, the tee shot: Trees line the left side of the fairway in what looks like a parkland layout; you’ll need to make a straight drive in the center. From here, the course changes and a thick peninsula of marsh forms the inner ring of this magnificent dogleg left. Many players — myself included — try to clear the corner; most fail, ending up in muck and marsh. The smart play is to nail a 7-iron to the turn and then hit a wedge to the slightly raised green. With this approach you will walk away with par rather than a score you won’t want to mention.

Hole 5

(163 yards, par 3)

Water comes into play on all but one par 3 at Kilmarlic, and this one is no exception. Your best tactic is a full mid-iron from the tee box to the green. A short shot will fall into the drink, which I have personally witnessed many times. The last time I teed up on this par 3, I nailed my 7-iron on the front part of the green, leaving me a long putt — which I missed, thus carding par. If you think more club is the answer, there is a bunker behind the green to cause trouble.

Hole 6

(487 yards, par 4)

Yes, par 4 — and a difficult par 4 it is. Well bunkered on the left, this hole is a challenge to reach in two. A pond lines the left tee box and should not come into play. Wild shots right will remain in the Outer Banks forever, like the ships that line the graveyard coast. If you can control your woods, this is the time to manhandle your 3-wood to try for the green, knowing you will probably fall short. Scoring five will feel like par.

Hole 9

(545 yards, par 5)

This one is all about the drive; it’s long and has a pond right where the average golfer tends to place the ball. The best shot is left center or right next to the pond. I have seen many short drives where a second mis-hit shot falls into the drink. You will need the best fairway wood shot to get some distance toward the hole, and then you should be left with a comfortable iron to the elevated green, with an often-caught bunker guarding the right front.

Hole 11

(151 yards, par 3)

This island green typically plays less, but many golfers end up wet trying to reach this small, oddly-shaped patch of terra firma. The green has a bunker on the right front edge, which also catches many errant shots.

Hole 12

(495 yards, par 5)

The same devil that sank the Kilmarlic ship can sink your drive into the wetlands. It is absolutely key to drive your ball left center so you have a clean second shot and an approach to the green. The average golfer has difficulty with this second shot, as there are so many areas where you can be led astray. Shots too far right can be lost in the wetlands. Even when you are safe right, you then have a precarious shot where you are tempted to aim to the green over part of the wetlands and a pond. The green, tucked in on the right side of the dogleg right, is well bunkered.

Hole 16

(552 yards, par 5)

Here’s another wild challenge. Your drive must stay clear of the bunker on the right and land center of the fairway. Balls left will require a punch-out, making par difficult. Your second shot has to clear the marsh area, which catches many mis-hit shots; be careful to cut the dogleg left and at the same time avoid running your ball through the other side of the fairway. Achieve all this and you will have a relatively clear shot to the green.

Hole 18

(514 yards, par 5)

On this fine finishing hole, keep your drive in the center of the fairway to avoid a marshy outcropping on the left side. Big hitters have a good chance of reaching the pond that lies about 250 yards out and continues on the entire left side of the fairway. Fairway bunkers snatch second shots as this hole turns left to a raised green.


Kilmarlic Golf Club
215 West Side Lane
Powells Point, NC 27966
tel 252 491 4220

Introducing

FX Excursions

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

Feature
Feb 23, 2020

3 Stops to Wellness in Australia

Wellness travel can seem like an oxymoron after a 19-plus-hour flight to Australia — but there’s something so luxurious about traveling for a great spa.

Athens: A city that charms its guests and stirs their emotions

The city took its name from Athena, goddess of wisdom, strategy and war, and protector of the city. The financial, political and administrative center of the country and an all-powerful city-state in antiquity, Athens is a major center of culture. A visit to the first-ever museum dedicated to Byzantium, a stroll around the National Garden and a trip to the Olympeion archaeological site will take you back through time.

News
Feb 23, 2020

JetBlue Relaunches JetBlue Vacations

JetBlue Vacations recently relaunched, offering travelers bundled experiences and allowing them to purchase flights, hotel stays, car rentals and more in one spot for one price. Bundles now include additional benefits, such as free in-flight beverages, earlier flight boarding and no change fees.

Feature
Feb 23, 2020

JetBlue Plans New Routes and Schedules Ahead of 20th Anniversary

Ahead of its 20th anniversary, JetBlue will make several changes to its schedule and routes. This means new flights to Guatemala City, more flights in popular JetBlue markets and routes and adjustments to Caribbean and West Coast flights.

Adventure of a Lifetime with Volvo

Looking for a truly unique travel experience and considering a new vehicle? The Volvo Overseas Delivery Program is the perfect solution to create your own adventure of a lifetime. Volvo allows you to custom order your new automobile tailored to fit your needs and desires. They will fly you to Sweden to pick up your Volvo so you can drive and explore Scandinavia and Europe on your terms for up to two weeks.

Daily
Feb 23, 2020

The Westin New Orleans Completes Massive Overhaul

The Westin New Orleans recently completed a massive, $30 million revitalization, touching on every part of the hotel. Major renovations were made to guestrooms, social spaces and meeting and event spaces. New dining establishments and meeting venues were added as well.

Feature
Feb 21, 2020

New Boeing CEO David Calhoun to Prioritize 737 MAX’s Return to the Skies

Boeing’s new CEO will prioritize bringing the company’s troubled 737 MAX to service for 2020.

Earn and Redeem with oneworld

oneworld is an alliance of 13 world-leading airlines committed to providing the highest level of service and connecting you to more than 1,100 destinations around the world.

News
Feb 21, 2020

United Airlines Plans Denver International Airport Expansion

United Airlines recently announced the approval of 24 additional gates at Denver International Airport. United plans to grow its Denver hub from 500 daily flights to as many as 700 by 2025. The additional gates are part of the airport’s $1.5 billion concourse expansion and are planned for Concourses A and B. United will add a new United Club on Concourse A, as well as expand existing United Clubs at the airport.