The Chimney's Review
by John Kim
The Chimneys is the latest and greatest addition to the Eagle Greens community of golf courses in the Atlanta area. Located in Winder, just one mile off of Highway 316 (towards Athens), the course is a lot closer to golfers in the northeast quadrant of Atlanta than most would think. In fact, I’d wager that if you live off I-85, this course is closer to you than half of the courses you tend to play now. In addition to a good proximity, the course is of a very good quality. It’s not full of spectacular scenic vistas or near any impressive bodies of water, but it is as fun and enjoyable a layout as you’ll play in the area. There is no big name architect responsible for the course (pretty much built as they went along) but I’d bet you there’s quite a few
that would love to take credit for it.
Setting up your round: The course is still fairly new (opened in June of 2002) and thus, tee times aren’t impossible to get…yet. But as word spreads about this hidden gem, I guarantee that this becomes a favorite stop of a lot of Atlanta Golfers. The quality layout, conditions, and staff along with the incredible value offered can’t stay hidden too long. Enjoy this course as soon as you can. You can call their pro shop at (770) 307-4900.
When you arrive: There is a driving range and practice green which you’ll want to take advantage of. The pro shop is fairly “no frills”, though it does have pretty much anything you’d need to enjoy your round that day. There is no grillroom, though there are a few pre-made sandwiches along with the standard chips, crackers, and candy bars. Also, there are a couple coolers of drinks that offer pretty much everything (and yes, beer if that matters to you), so it’s not like you are left lacking.
Hole you will love: There are so many choices for “favorite hole” out here. Two drive-able par 4s on the back (270 yards!), a par 5 or two that many can reach in two, long difficult par 3s, this course has them all. But my favorite hole is #10, a fairly short downhill par 4 that offers the best view on the course. From the elevated tee box, the hole really gives you a chance to appreciate the setting before you “go low” on the back nine. (By the way, everyone in the group scored better on the back nine than on the
Hole you won’t: Hole #15 is a long, tough par 5 that plays straight uphill off the tee, and has danger lurking all the way down the right side all the way through the green. The green itself is long, narrow, and has several tough slopes to negotiate. This hole will give up more double bogeys than pars or birdies. Honorable mention goes to hole #2 that is a 200 yard plus long hole that has rockwalls in the bunkers that guard it, and if your ball comes just a few feet short of the green, the ball can (and will!) ricochet into the woods.
Overview: You won’t leave this course awed by any one thing – but you’ll be eager to return after playing it just one time. The one word that keeps coming back to me as I describe the course is…”fun”. I told two friends about The Chimneys after I played there, and they visited for themselves within a week. Their responses to the course were as enthusiastic as I’ve heard in a long time. “Best value in Atlanta” and “As enjoyable a layout as I’ve played in awhile” were two of the responses. No, this course won’t make you forget White Columns, but it will probably make its way into your rotation of courses. This course is a real find, one I’ll be visiting regularly from here on out.