To be perfectly honest, when I first wrote about Bandon Crossings Golf Course last year, I wasn't convinced the seasonal and remote Bandon market could support an upscale golf course unaffiliated with the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort.
However, Southern Oregon's daily newspaper, The World, recently reported that Bandon Crossings, so far, is doing quite well in terms of traffic and course conditioning.
"The course has enjoyed a busy first six months, and throughout the winter received a lot of play from people who were coming to spend several days at Bandon Dunes," the paper wrote, paraphrasing head professional Mark Fiore.
It certainly hasn't hurt that Bandon Crossings was ranked by Golfweek magazine as the seventh best public course in Oregon and by Golf Magazine as one of the top-10 new courses in the United States for 2007. Those kinds of endorsements can do wonders for a golf course.
The key difference between Bandon Crossings and the courses at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort, besides the latter's superior, seaside site, is that Bandon Crossings allows the use of golf carts whereas Bandon Dunes Golf Resort largely does not.
That's nice if you're a resort guest with plans on playing 36 holes a day and you want to ride during your second round, but I doubt that Bandon Crossings can survive on that limited scenario alone. As for becoming a regular, off-campus part of Bandon Dunes vacations, I, for one, would rather play the three (soon to be four) Bandon Dunes Golf Resort courses twice before going anywhere else even once. Yes, they're that good.