Golf Course Review: Highlands Ridge
A True Hidden Gem
Highlands Ridge is what I would call a hidden gem - unless you know the courses are there, you’re probably not going to find them. They’re off the beaten path in Avon Park, just north of Sebring, about three miles off of Route 27. There are two course here, the North and the South. The South is an Arthur Hills design and was closed on my visit, something to look forward to when I go back.
The North Course didn’t disappoint; as a matter of fact, if you didn’t know better you’d swear you were in the Carolinas; I don’t recall seeing a single palm tree during our round. There are several risk reward opportunities here as well as a few memorable holes. My favorite was the par 5 7th. As par 5’s go, it’s pretty short and the reward certainly outweighs the risk on your second shot, provided you hit a good drive. The same thing cannot be said about the par 4 5th hole, a sharp dogleg left. There’s way too much risk in trying to fly the hazard, not only do you risk hitting it in the hazard if you hit it poorly, you risk hitting it in the water if you hit it too well. Just play straight out toward the bunker and have about a 120-yard pitch shot into a long narrow green that is well protected with sand.