The Links at Lakewood (Sumter, SC on 04/03/17)

After our rounds at Bryan Park on Sunday, we decided to make our way south towards Orangeburg, SC, where we were staying later in the week. We made it to Sumter on Sunday night and played The Links at Lakewood on Monday morning. But, that wasn’t how we originally scheduled our trip! We had talked about playing Tobacco Road on Monday, but the weather was looking “iffy”. Then, we missed out on the $99 online rate and didn’t feel like paying $145 at Tobacco Road with the potential of getting rained out!

We had an early morning tee time at The Links at Lakewood, with the proshop accommodating us on short notice,¬†and it was quiet out when we got there. We enjoyed a nice pace and zipped around in a little over 3 hours, just waiting on a large group for the last couple holes. I have no idea how this happened, but the cloud cover burned off in just one hole! Once it did, the wind sure picked up with the approaching storms! The course’s location worked out well as we had an afternoon where we didn’t have to do much driving!

We played from the Blue tees which are 6826/73.8/124. Any course over 6700 yards is typically a bit much for me, but the whites at 6120 yards weren’t going to be enough. The distance was noticeable, with the par 3’s being on the long side and most of the par 4’s playing between 369 and 401 yards. There were a mix of doglegs so not every hole played its yardage on the scorecard.

The one thing that I’ll remember the most about the course, is that it was a good driving course! I hit it crooked, so I wasn’t fully able to appreciate the design, but know that it would be helpful to be able to work the ball both ways here. The 7th is probably the best driving hole on the front while the 12th is probably the best on the back! The 7th doglegs right and you either have to layup or cut the drive to end up in the fairway. I hit it straight and ended up just pitching out as there is water short of the green. The 12th is similar to the 7th, it just has more trees and no water!

If you can put the ball in play off the tee here, then you can put together a good score. There is enough space around the greens to allow you to scramble. The only other problems you may encounter are water hazards, some of which are hidden or may come into play if you get greedy after a bad drive. The 13th, a par 3 with an island green, is the course’s signature hole!

The conditions were just fine considering our $30 green fee. I think the ownership may have recently changed, and it was evident that the course doesn’t have a massive maintenance budget. My compliments to the staff, as they’ve done a nice job with what they had! Heck, I was just happy to see green grass and leaves on trees after months of dormant bermuda in Central Virginia this winter! The fairways were full and almost back to being green here! The greens were full too, I just had to give my putts a rap as they were slow. The tees were fine, just taking longer to green up. Off the fairways the turf was thin and sandy, which is consistent with courses in the Southeast from my experience.

I thought about this a couple times while I was playing, but The Links at Lakewood reminded me a lot of Florida golf. The course was in a housing community, had plenty of water in play, had that sandy soil, and some nice looking pine trees! I don’t know about other course choices nearby, but the proshop was very friendly and I found the course to be a good value.

#1 (385 yard par 4):

#2 (561 yard par 5):

#3 (175 yard par 3):

#4 (389 yard par 4):

#5 (517 yard par 5):

#6 (195 yard par 3):

#7 (369 yard par 4):

#8 (401 yard par 4):

#9 (421 yard par 4):

#10 (457 yard par 4):

#11 (379 yard par 4):

#12 (391 yard par 4):

#13 (173 yard par 3):

#14 (537 yard par 5):

#15 (381 yard par 4):

#16 (371 yard par 4):

#17 (191 yard par 3):

#18 (533 yard par 5):


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