One of the top golf destinations in the southeastern United States, Reynolds Lake Oconee is home to 117 golf holes. 18 of the best of those are on its Oconee course, designed by Rees Jones and originally unveiled in 2002.
Jones inherited some of the best terrain on the entire property to work with for the back nine of the Oconee course, meandering through inlets and setting up gorgeous tee shots over water on the par three 15th and closing par four 18th.
The 18th is one of the strongest finishing holes I’ve ever played, driving over Lake Oconee from 466 yards from the tips and still 426 from the third tees in.
What it lacks in lake frontage, the front nine makes up for with elevation. The fifth through ninth holes all have elevated tee shots, highlighted by a beautiful pair of par threes (5 and 8).
In addition to thousands of visitors, the Oconee course has played host to the annual Linger Longer Invitational college championship, the 2007 PGA Cup and the annual Chik-fil-A Bowl Challenge. Along with Great Waters, the Oconee helps put the premier in Reynolds Lake Oconee’s premier golfing destination.
The course begins with a long par five, measuring 538 yards from the first tees in. A small pond comes in to play about 450 yards down the fairway, and the green resides off a short dogleg left alongside the water.
Hole two at The Oconee is a mid-range par four with an interesting green complex. Heavily protected on all other sides, the pin while we were there was right in the front-right – the only area not bunkered.
You’ll see on the second hole that the Oconee course puts a premium on accurate driving. It’s heavily wooded but very fair – none of us had significant issues keeping our tee shots in play.