Elk River Club: Jack Nicklaus Signature Course in North Carolina

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Residents and members of Elk River Club have the privilege of playing on one of the top rated golf courses in the country. Elk River Club is home to the first Jack Nicklaus designed golf course, and opened in 1984. In this post, we highlight what golfers can expect to encounter while playing this breathtaking mountain golf course, located in Elk River Club.

Elk River Club: Jack Nicklaus' First Signature Course in NC

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Elk River Club: The Vitals

The 18-hole Elk River Club in Banner Elk, North Carolina is a private golf course that first opened in 1984. It is the first Jack Nicklaus signature course design in the state of North Carolina; yes even before his Pinehurst design! Elk River Golf Club is open from the end of April (around April 25) through November 1st each season. Green fees range between $100-$125 during the week and weekends. While Elk River Club golf course is a private golf club, members are allowed to play with guests.

The golf course measures 6,829 yards from the longest tees, and has a slope rating of 141, and a 73.4 USGA rating. The course features four sets of tees at varying lengths for different skill levels. More details about length, slope, and rating for each tee can be seen below:


On-Site Amenities:

  • PGA Pro In-House
  • Driving Range
  • Rental Clubs
  • Rental Carts
  • Pro Shop
  • Trackman Technology

What to Expect on the Course

Elk River Club is notable for being the first Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course in North Carolina. Players are teased with the titular Elk River throughout the course, with it winding its way through the property. Nicklaus even works the river into play on at least two holes. Players will feel treated to what feels like two separate golf courses in one, as the front and back 9 vary greatly. The front-9 players can expect an open, almost flat experience, with tall grasses surrounding the holes. On the back-9, players are presented with a much more traditional mountain-style golf course, with trees aplenty, elevated tee shots, and altitude changes. Elk river golf course, banner elk north carolina

While the river does come into play on several holes, it is the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains that steal the show during a round at Elk River. Players experience a totla altitude change of more than 1,200 feet during a round. Most of that change is experienced on the southside of the property, whereas a majority of the round will take place on a more conventional “rolling hills” style course along the base of the mountain.

This Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course presents players with multiple risk/reward opportunities. Courageous players will find low scores by playing aggressively, but the 51 bunkers that surround many of the greens require aggressive players to think twice about going for the green in two.

As one would expect with anything inside the Elk River community, the golf course is maintained and manicured meticulously. Our members expect the best, and it is our goal to provide them with the best 18 hole golf experience that keeps them coming back day after day for more. We take an immense amount of pride in being one of the best mountain golf courses in the entire Southeast region.

Elk River Club: Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course in Banner Elk, NC

The team at Elk River Realty is committed to helping you find the best luxury mountain home in Banner Elk or mountain real estate on which you can build you dream mountain home. To learn more about our Elk River real estate options, contact our team today!