Bethpage Black is unquestionably the best of the 'Super Munis'

They’re the ultimate muni foursome of tournament golf: Bethpage Black, Torrey Pines South, Chambers Bay and TPC Harding Park.

While all present very unique histories in different parts of the country with wildly different designs, they’ve nevertheless all hosted some of the most prestigious events in golf, including the U.S. Open, World Golf Championships, FedEx Cup Playoffs and upcoming PGA Championship.

As the first round of The Barclays kicked off at Bethpage Black on Thursday, we asked Twitter which course golfers would most like to play.

Here is the poll question (live thru Friday morning):

Bethpage Black appears to be the clear leader based on your votes. So, how do your results compare to Matt Ginella's opinion? All four made his Top 50 courses you can play in the U.S.

'Super Munis' on Ginella’s Top 50

Torrey Pines South (No. 30)

TPC Harding Park (No. 25)

Chambers Bay (No. 18 )

Bethpage Black (No. 4)

So let’s compare how the poll results and Ginella's rankings stack up with golfer reviews on Golf Advisor. Managing a muni is tough business, especially when they carry such high expectations. When the cameras leave the grounds, these facilities have an obligation to schlep an extraordinary number of golfers around its fairways. And because these are all difficult layouts to boot, it’s no surprise each course’s pace of play ratings are the laggard.

Create bar charts

Bethpage is the clear winner overall, with the only weak link being pace of play. Chambers Bay makes up for lower Value and Conditions with an excellent Staff Friendliness rating and the highest Course Layout rating.

TPC Harding Park has the most reviews by far, and is also the lowest-performing of the four munis in most categories. Management has a tough task here. Of these munis, it’s closest to the city center and has extreme demand for year-round play (Bethpage has five courses total, Torrey Pines has two 18s, while Harding Park just has a small, 9-hole course). It is, of the four facilities, the best combination of accessibility and affordability. It’s also regarded by raters as the easiest layout, which can be seen by many as an advantage.

These certainly aren't the only great munis in the U.S. In fact, Mike Bailey wrote up his ten favorite beyond the PGA Tour-tested venues we know and love.

Video: Is a round at Bethpage worth camping out for?

Brandon Tucker is the Sr. Managing Editor for GolfPass and was the founding editor of Golf Advisor in 2014, he was the managing editor for Golf Channel Digital's Courses & Travel. To date, his golf travels have taken him to over two dozen countries and nearly 600 golf courses worldwide. While he's played some of the most prestigious courses in the world, Tucker's favorite way to play the game is on a great muni in under three hours. Follow Brandon on Twitter at @BrandonTucker and on Instagram at @btuck34.
Commented on

Oh, there are so many others just as good as those in LA alone...Rancho Park and Wilson and Harding in LA are fantastic munis that have hosted all kinds of tour events...

Related Links

The Black Course at Bethpage State Park has a championship pedigree like no other municipal golf course in the country. Sheer length, bold bunkering and burly rough challenge anybody lucky enough to nab a tee time.
13 Images
Torrey Pines South, which hosted the 2008 U.S. Open and will host it again in 2021, and Torrey Pines North are open to the public. Both are wonderful plays, and most days picture-perfect weather will only add to the fun.
3 Min Read
More from the author
9 Min Read
March 13, 2023
App makers are racing to improve their apps for the Apple Watch, the world's most popular wearable.
5 Min Read
December 7, 2021
It may be the private club capital of Florida, but golfers endorse these public-access courses.
4 Min Read
December 3, 2021
It's never been easier to design custom hats, golf balls, clubs, headcovers and more.
2 Min Read
November 30, 2021
It's possible this little ditty finds you scooping up the last bit of cranberry pie crumbs out of the tray. Thanksgiving may have passed but the effects of celebratory eating around the table, and also possibly social imbibing during all the various football games throughout the weekend, are sticking with us. To our bellies and elsewhere.
4 Min Read
November 23, 2021
We scoured the web of golf and found holiday savings up to 50% off.
12 Min Read
November 18, 2021
Golfers can choose from a wide variety of portable launch monitor price points and user experiences. Here is what's new and the best ones to consider to improve your golf.
21 Images
August 28, 2023
Summer golf's finale heads overseas to discover some cool courses most Americans probably don't know much about.
10 Images
September 10, 2023
The Robert Trent Jones Jr. design overlooks Bodega Bay, the site of Alfred Hitchcock's horror movie classic, 'The Birds'.
15 Images
September 18, 2023
We previewed the inventive 19-holer, which has begun taking tee times for Dec. 1, 2023 and beyond
11 Images
September 22, 2023
The course David McLay Kidd designed more than a decade ago is finally ready for its official opening October 5th.
Now Reading
Bethpage Black is unquestionably the best of the 'Super Munis'