Whistling Straits is one of two 36-hole golf destinations associated with The American Club, a resort located in nearby Kohler, Wisconsin, and owned by a subsidiary of the Kohler Company. The other is Blackwolf Run, west of the city of Sheboygan. Both are ranked among the best in the United States.
The Straits Course replicates the ancient seaside links courses of the United Kingdom and Ireland. Nestled along a two-mile stretch of Lake Michigan, the course features vast rolling greens, deep pot bunkers, grass-topped dunes and winds that sweep in off the lake. At 7,514 yards, it is the second longest course to host a major.
The 17th hole named “Pinched Nerve”, the unofficial signature hole, is the most difficult par-3 on the course. At 223 yards with towering sand dunes and the lake to the left, the only option is to go straight for the green.
Although the Straits Course duplicates British and Irish links layouts, its original state was not links land. Before the course was built, the property was a more or less featureless, abandoned airfield called Camp Haven. Its one saving grace, from a golf standpoint, was its lake frontage. Kohler Company CEO Herbert Kohler signed up Dye as course architect. The courses at Whistling Straits and Blackwolf Run were designed by Pete and Alice Dye. Both of these courses have had the honor of hosting the U.S. Senior Open, PGA Championship, and the Palmer Cup. This course has a lot in store for the future with hosting the PGA Championship in 2015 and the Ryder Cup Matches in 2020.