America’s 50 Toughest Golf Courses

Pete Dye, 81, has been torturing golfers for half his life, and the Ocean Course, strung along the Atlantic coastline with fairways and greens perched above sand, sea oats and sweetgrass, is perhaps his most Dye-abolical design. (Eight of our top 50 were created by the man they call the “Marquis de Sod.”) The Ocean has the highest combination of Slope Rating (155) and Course Rating (79.6) in America, according to the U.S. Golf Association. With forced carries over marshes, endless waste bunkers and roll-resistant Bermuda grasses, the Ocean is a rare course that can bring tears and fears even to tour pros–it was dubbed Looney Dunes after multiple mishaps in the 1991 Ryder Cup. For the rest of us, it kicks sand in our face–literally when howling winds turn club covers into windsocks. Play it in the mornings when it’s walking only. You can’t cross the Rubicon in a golf cart.