Established in 1916, Tryon Country Club is one of the oldest private golf clubs in North Carolina. The club is essentially a nine hole golfing club where members walk or ride, play nine or 18, and hardly ever wait at the tee any day of the week.
The golf course was designed by the distinguished Donald Ross. Nine holes play to 18 by virtue of one extra green and variations of tee placements.
It’s a challenging par 72 for men and 75 for women.
Tryon Country Club is member-owned and member-run, administered by a resident PGA club professional and maintained by a capable greens staff. Officers and three members of a nine-member board are elected each year.
The club is financially sound, free of debt and very well-maintained by the income of nominal initiation fees and annual dues. Professional maintenance of the course is augmented by the generous volunteer labor of members.
Facilities include the golf course, a driving range, chipping and putting practice greens, the full-size swimming pool, the clubhouse, locker rooms and the pro shop, all available to members and guests. PGA instruction is available from our club professionals.
The course is open all day every day. However, for about eight months each year, Monday mornings are reserved for play by members of the Tryon Men’s Golf Association. Likewise, Tuesday mornings are reserved for the Tryon Women’s Golf Association. Both groups are made up of club members who benefit by getting to know one another in the warm and friendly atmosphere of weekly organized golf played in a variety of competitive formats.
Annual tournaments and events are held for men, women and juniors each year, including club championships, member-guest, twilight golf and more. Beginner and junior instructional golf programs are available year-round.
The club’s rustic clubhouse, overlooking the incoming third and ninth greens and a full-sized swimming pool, is the center of abundant social activity that includes swimming for adults and children alike and club member picnics on Memorial Day, 4th of July and Labor Day.
National Historic Registry
In 2013, Tryon Country Club was added to the National Register of Historic Places by The U.S. Department of the Interior.
The Tryon Country Club golf course was originally laid out in 1914 and secondary sources attribute the design to golf course architect Donald Ross. It is very likely that he designed the course which has a nine-hole layout with the holes routed in a predominately east-west direction in the valley formed by Little Creek. The design utilizes two different sets of tee placements within the tee boxes, which allows the golfer to play the same fairway and green twice for a distinct eighteen-hole round. This solution provides an eighteen-hole course in half the space. The course continues to be played in this manner, golfers choosing their tee location based on whether they are playing the back nine or the front nine. The golf course has Bermuda grass fairways, Bermuda and Zoysia grass tee boxes, and bent grass greens.
When the course was originally constructed, members entered from Horseshoe Curve Road, where the entrance to the practice range is today. A small house, which no longer stands, served as the clubhouse. In 1922, when the present clubhouse building was erected on the north side of the property, the membership decided to renumber the holes on the course in order to start and finish at the clubhouse. In 1940, the club determined that the original sand greens should be replaced with turf. Grasses that had been developed recently to withstand the hot southern climate and required less maintenance became popular for golf courses. Before converting to grass putting surfaces, sand greens were built as rectangular flat surfaces, which were oiled and raked regularly to keep the sand in place. At the same time five tee boxes—for holes one, two, three, six and eight–were moved or elongated slightly to accommodate the stronger golfer. The new greens also required slight adjustments in dimension and location, but the overall length of the holes remained constant.
As originally designed the fairways were narrow and composed of native grasses. The holes were laid out to follow the natural contours of the land, permitting water drainage to flow along its usual path to the creek. Of seven log bridges originally built to cross Little Creek, only one remains in place on the second fairway. Twelve bridges are scattered throughout the course, including seven modern cart bridges with low parapets of stacked timbers that were constructed in 2009-2010 to replace earlier structures; two rock-faced culverts in the first fairway; two wooden footbridges located in the fairways of the second and fifth holes; and the surviving log bridge.