Pete Dye fans have a new must-play golf destination in our part of the country. It’s Shepherd’s Rock, a companion to former PGA Tour stop Mystic Rock that opened this summer at the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Western Pennsylvania. It’s all Dye and it’s all great golf fun.
Nemacolin owner Maggie Hardy Magerko says the course was designed to have a wild but relaxed vibe (kind of like she does!). “It’s meant to be a transition for the stodgy world of golf. It’s for everyone, not just the purists.”
The 7,151-yard course sits high among the visual splendor of the Allegheny Mountains. The rolling terrain gave Dye and design associate Tim Liddy an opportunity to stretch their ideas in some interesting directions while providing a course that can be enjoyed by players of all levels. The front nine is long but wide open while the back depends on shot-making accuracy to heighten the drama. The average golfer can indeed enjoy the par 72 course, although there are plenty of Pete Dye visual tricks to keep you on your toes. Five sets of tees playing as short as 5,049 yards are available.
Nemacolin Director of Golf Mike Jones explains, “It’s all about variety. You’re going to have holes where you can bomb it and others where you have to be more accurate. You’ll also have to make choices,” he says. “Go for it or not?” He adds, “It’s a great compliment to Mystic Rock.”
Mystic Rock is a Pete Dye design, too. It opened in 1995 and its 77 rating/149 slope makes it tough enough to host the PGA Tour’s 84 Lumber Classic from 2003 to 2006. When you add the fabulous Nemacolin Golf Academy to the mix, Nemacolin is a full-featured golf destination.
The 2,000-acre Nemacolin Woodlands Resort offers a full range of activities for everyone from buddy trippers to family firsters. In addition to 36 holes of golf, the resort features the Woodlands Spa with 40 treatment rooms, the Holistic Healing Center, a 2,400-sq. ft. fitness center, and The Grove, a spa for kids ages 5-13 offering age-appropriate services.
Need some adventure in your life? Try the Jeep Off-Road Driving Academy, the Fatbird SuperFlyer dueling zip lines, rock climbing, rope courses, or combat paintball. The Nemacolin Field Club features a shooting academy with sporting clays and archery as well as Orvis-endorsed fly fishing. Unique Nemacolin attractions include museums like the Woodlands Auto Toy Store, the Pride and Joy Airplane Hangar, and the Nemacolin Shell Collection, not to mention a multi-million-dollar art collection. There’s a casino, too!
Accommodations include 322 rooms in five distinct venues ranging from the luxurious Falling Rock to two-bedroom town homes. There are fifteen dining and ten lounge options as well as Pennsylvania’s largest public wine cellar. Nemacolin Woodlands Resort is located about 70 miles south of Pittsburgh. If you don’t want to fly commercial, it also has a 3,900-ft. private airstrip.