All four of McConnell Golf's Donald Ross-designed courses lie along Interstate 40; let’s take a trip!
The legendary Donald Ross designed four beloved McConnell Golf Courses, and each one is easily accessed from Interstate 40. Since Interstate 40 is often called “I-40” in conversation, we like to call this trail of courses the “DR-40.” At exactly 400 Donald Ross Drive, just outside of downtown Raleigh, DR-40 begins at Raleigh Country Club. Ninety miles west in Greensboro, North Carolina, the most challenging Ross-designed course along DR-40 is Sedgefield Country Club. Here’s a look at Asheville's stop along this well-traveled route.
An easy drive from Greensboro in the Blue Ridge Mountains you'll find a true gem at Country Club of Asheville. Considered the oldest private club in North Carolina, it was founded in 1894 and is McConnell Golf’s only mountain course. Recognized as one of “The First 100 Clubs in America,” this track is the shortest course along DR-40 at 6,673 yards. However, it is definitely the most elevated, offering incredible views of the surrounding mountains. No doubt the best view is on hole 15. After you continuously hit uphill onto the green, you’ll feel compelled to pause and enjoy the vista as you overlook downtown Asheville. Besides appreciating the gorgeous scenery, you’ll enjoy the abundant wildlife: turkeys, deer, and even black bears, that the golfers here have said are friendly.
After a scenic drive through the mountains, the last stop on DR-40 is at Holston Hills Country Club in Knoxville, Tennessee. This course has been well-preserved since Ross created it in 1927, in fact, every tee and green at Holston Hills is still located exactly where it was originally built, allowing golfers a pure experience to play the course as it was intended.
What the DR-40 courses have in common are small undulating greens and rolling fairways, but each course is unique. The only way to know for sure is to see for yourself; the entire drive takes five-and-a-half-hours, and the trip makes for a perfect golf vacation.