The instructors at North Carolina Golf Academy welcome students of all stripes. They might coach pro golfers, casual players, or "Dew Sweepers"—a term for golfers' partners who want a quick introduction to the game so they can join their partners on the course. Their classes cover technical tips and swing analyses, as well as the history of golf, leading to a well-rounded appreciation of the sport. And, if students can't come to them, they can bring their simulators and putting machines to corporate offices and schools.
For a few centuries, Carver?s Falls was closed to the public, and it's easy to see how much the area benefited from that solitude. The natural beauty of its forests and the waterfall at its heart have flourished. But today, the tree canopy has been transformed into an aerial playground. Wires cross the sky, connecting tree to tree. Every day, ZipQuest's guides lead birds-eye tours of the pristine landscape on their expansive zipline network or via the Swing Shot that pendulums vertiginously above Carver's Creek.
Whether the lighting comes from the sun or helmet-mounted lamps, no fewer than two experienced guides lead guests through Carver's Falls' 2.5-hour course. Adventurers fly down eight ziplines?each designed for a long, leisurely glide or an adrenaline-pumping plunge?while pointing out local flora and fauna. Groups pause only to disembark on high platforms anchored to centuries-old trees. Floating spiral staircases and sky bridges, the longest of which stretches 210 feet, interconnect the platforms. A suspension bridge carries explorers over the falls to a penultimate zipline that runs parallel to its creek. At the end of the run, guests catch their breath while looking through the pictures their camera-wielding guide took.
More than 8,000 square feet of space comprise RedPoint, a climbing gym set in a renovated warehouse. Nearly every inch has been set aside for towering climbing walls and exercise equipment to help climbers shore up their skills.
Within these confines, a team of instructors is on hand to teach the skills needed to conquer the facility’s tricky bouldering routes. They can also teach the fundamentals of belaying, which will help you to scale any of the more than 30 onsite climbing stations for top roping, lead climbing, or washing windows on the state capitol building. Back at ground level, you can tone your physique on pull-up bars, rowing machines, and Olympic weights as well as in CrossFit classes, which work on building core strength and overall fitness. The facility also hosts various kid-focused activities such as lock-ins, birthday parties, and corporate retreats for mountain goats.
Featuring two cypress lakes and scenic panoramas, this 18-hole championship course provides golfers with 6,307 yards of challenging tee-to-green terrain. The design demands consistently well-placed drives to avoid strategically placed sand bunkers, which hug friendly fairways and butterfly-kiss undulating bent-grass greens. Depending on which of the course’s five sets of tees you opt to play from, some tee shots may require you to traverse obstructing water and hypnotize territorial mermen. Complimentary carts expedite the wayward orb-fetching process provided you stay on land, and the course’s frequent elevation changes will make you grateful for your four-wheel gopher and your two-eye face, with which you can enjoy the course’s sweeping vistas.
The course at Gates Four Golf and Country Club was opened in 1967, but you wouldn't know it from the youthful conditions of the grounds. Players traverse a course that boasts USGA-approved bent grass greens and completely overhauled bunkers thanks to a 2011 renovation. The surrounding pine trees, meanwhile, cast their elongated shadows across each fairway in the twilight hours, giving them a railroad-tie effect as players finish off their rounds.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Total length of 6,895 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 73.3 from the back tees * Course slope of from the back tees * Five sets of tees per hole * Scorecard