Pound Ridge Golf Club: A challenging and scenic test an hour's drive from New York City

POUND RIDGE, N.Y. -- It's easy to forget that Pound Ridge Golf Club is less than 50 miles from New York City. I reveled in the pure silence of playing Pound Ridge on a clear fall day when most golfers were slaves to their lives elsewhere.

The most remote holes near the Connecticut state line sneak through the woods in scenic solitude. They're gorgeous and ferocious. Pete and Perry Dye's signature volcanic bunkers and mounds work in symmetry with the natural wetlands, trees and exposed rock of the region to create an intimidating amphitheater of epic golf. Pound Ridge punishes those who dare take on more than they can handle from the tee. Knee-knocking carries require do-or-die swings on holes 3, 12 and 14, all daunting par 4s from the 6,773-yard Oak tees.

Two monumental rock features -- "Pete's Rock," a massive boulder guarding the 13th fairway, and "Headstone," a daunting backdrop to the narrow green of the par-3 15th hole -- highlight the round. If you're wise, stick to the Granite tees, and pray your game is on point. Balls can disappear almost as fast as money in the city, but there's a satisfaction in playing well on such a demanding golf course.

Pound Ridge Golf Club's recently expanded clubhouse with an upgraded kitchen serves huge salads; tasty, freshly made sandwiches; and other golf fare.

Jason Scott Deegan has reviewed and photographed more than 1,000 courses and written about golf destinations in 20 countries for some of the industry's biggest publications. His work has been honored by the Golf Writer's Association of America and the Michigan Press Association. Follow him on Instagram at @jasondeegangolfpass and Twitter at @WorldGolfer.

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The first thing you notice about Pound Ridge (N.Y.) Golf Club is its beauty. The next thing you notice is how hard this Pete and Perry Dye course is to play. If you're a fan of Dye's work, you'll love Pound Ridge. It's visually stunning, you hardly ever get a flat lie and if you're going to challenge his design, be prepared to pay the consequences if you fail. But one thing is for sure: once you play it, you won't forget it, Mike Bailey writes.
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Pound Ridge Golf Club: A challenging and scenic test an hour's drive from New York City