Golf Digest unveils jaw-dropping "Every Hole at Pine Valley" video
07 Feb 2024
by Sean Melia of AmateurGolf.com
The 18th hole at Pine Valley is considered one of the best closers in the world (Sean Melia)
Pine Valley might be the most mysterious golf course in the world. Tucked in southwest New Jersey, George Crump’s masterpiece is golf’s Narnia.
“You know you're nearing Pine Valley, it's been said, when over the hum of synthetic tires you hear wailing and lamentations on the wind. An agonized chorus that grows in intensity,” Jerry Tarde says in his narrations of Golf Digest’s newest “Every Hole at Pine Valley” video.
Tarde continues, “But first you have to find it. Before GPS, before navigation systems, even the closest gas stations had no idea how to get there. It's somewhere in Southwest New Jersey, 30 minutes from Philadelphia. Get off the interstate and head to the Clementon Amusement Park, then listen for the cries.”
America’s No. 1 ranked course, according to Golf Digest, is known for its brash and bold design that leaves golfers battered and bruised. The course blends the three design philosophies - penal, heroic, and strategic - together better than any course in the world.
Related: Photo Album - 97th Crump Cup Sunday Final Matches.
Herbert Warren Wind wrote “It has the characteristics of good links land replete with abrupt ridges, sudden dips and swirls, and a general anxiety.”
Rarely does Pine Valley open its gates for public consumption. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, thousands would flock to watch the best Mid-Amateurs battle each other in match play and marvel at the course.
Since the pandemic, Pine Valley has not allowed fans to watch the event.
That’s the type of place Pine Valley is - golfers are satisfied to simply set their eyes on the course without hitting a single shot.
Related: Behind the Scenes at the Crump Cup
Some of the AmateurGolf.com staff have been fortunate enough to visit Pine Valley. Chris Brauner participated in the Crump Cup, and staff writer Sean Melia was granted access to watch the 2022 Crump Cup’s final matches. The Mid-Amateur tournament, named after the course’s architect, is one of the most treasured invites in all of golf.
Related: Top 10 Things You Didn’t Know About the Crump Cup
In recent years, Tom Fazio has done some bunker reconstruction and tree removal at Pine Valley. The most notable change, as mentioned in Golf Digest’s video, was on the 12th hole. Fazio added “The fifth circle of hell” along the left side of the short par 4. “A cacophony of sandy caverns deep enough for human exploration.”
“Those who criticize the look don’t realize it’s what Crump would have done if only he had Tom’s bulldozers,” Tarde says in the video.
In 2017, Golf Digest was given access to the course for their “Every Hole” series. After the Tom Fazio renovations, Golf Digest returned to capture the changes and released an updated version of their 2017 video with new stories and exceptional narration by Jerry Tarde.
Watch the video below: