The Takeaway: One of the few clubs featuring a Nicklaus course and a Fazio design, Carlton Woods is the premier 36 hole club of Texas and features two of Houston’s best layouts. While the terrain isn’t terribly exciting due the flatness the area is known for, the conditioning is top shelf as is the club and experience. Grade B
Designer: Jack Nicklaus in 2001
Phone Number: (281) 863-5818
Course Website: Official Website - Visit The Club at Carlton Woods (Nicklaus)'s official website by clicking on the link provided.
Directions: Get here! - One Carlton Woods Dr., The Woodlands, Texas 77380
Accolades: Ranked 11th in Texas on Golf Course Gurus' best in State list.
What to Expect: Carlton Woods is a gated community on the north side of Houston that houses two of the areas finest courses; one designed by legendary player Jack Nicklaus and the other by legendary golf architect Tom Fazio. It is difficult to identify two more successful modern day golf course designers than these two titans whose work on the property is fantastic. The Nicklaus course was the first one opened on the property and has a separate clubhouse from the Fazio course. The parkland Nicklaus course weaves through mature trees and alongside several water features. The course is characterized by challenging par fours and water that comes into play on half the holes. The Fazio course features undulated terrain (rare in Houston) and an incredible variety of hole lengths, shapes, and strategies. The bunkering on the Fazio course is a memorable feature that ties the flow of the course together and has its own version of Hell's Half Acre on the par three 16th where a bunker runs from tee to green. Both courses are solid routings and are widely considered Houston's finest tracks with Fazio just edging out Mr. Nicklaus for the club's best course. (To my knowledge, only Pronghorn located in Bend, OR and Carlton Woods have the distinction of each offering a Nicklaus course and Fazio course at their club.)
By the Numbers
Individual Hole Analysis
Signature Hole: 15th Hole – 455 Yard Par 4
Best Par 3: 12th Hole – 192 Yards
Best Par 4: 15th Hole – 455 Yards
Best Par 5: 8th Hole – 578R/544L Yards
Birdie Time: 6th Hole – 378 Yard Par 4
Bogey Beware: 2nd Hole – 468 Yard Par 4