You don't need to be a member at White Oaks Country Club to get treated like one. Member or not, the course gives no special treatment to anyone. There are trees everywhere, and they're waiting to collect your golf ball.
On every one of the South Jersey golf course's 18 holes and 6,240 yards, pine and oak trees threaten to add a one-stroke penalty. There really aren't too many safe sides to miss on — if you can't hit it straight, you'll have to master your "punch out" shot. And accept a possible bogey.
"It's short but also pretty challenging," White Oaks' PGA Professional Chris Hutchinson said. "I would say we are for any skill level — you could be a single digit handicap or a 30 handicap, everyone enjoys the course."
If you can master your course management skills, White Oaks can really reward smart play with short par 4's on the back nine offering legitimate birdie opportunities to golfers of every skill level.
Pad your scorecard on the drivable 14th, 15th and 16th holes because by the time you reach the trek's penultimate hole, you'll be lucky to escape without a bogie — or worse.
"Number 17, in the early 2000s it was voted the toughest par 3 in South Jersey," Hutchinson said. "From the back tees it's 245 yards. The green itself is 50 yards long so depending on where the pin is, the different undulations, it is pretty challenging."
The facility has a true private club feel and affordable prices, both assets of being located 38 miles east of Philadelphia. But the 45-minute drive is worth it. You'll get an escape and a well-manicured course that has spotty cell service (to help you tune out the noise of nongolf related influences).
"We do have members but anyone who comes is treated like a member," the pro said. "We have a bag drop which a lot of courses don't offer. The moment you pull up everything is taken care of."
Local Knowledge tip: "You definitely don't need a driver on every hole. A lot of people get into the trap — but 14, 15 and 16 are very short par 4's, if you play an iron off the tee you will probably benefit more than hitting a driver off the tee."
Price range: From $23 on a weekday afternoon to $60 on a weekend morning.