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  • Chelsea Kalt

Bandon Dunes [Chelsea (Taylor’s Version)]

Updated: Jan 3

Written by Chelsea Kalt There have been many articles written about this magical, dreamy place called Bandon Dunes. But have you ever read a piece that compares each course to a Taylor Swift album? I didn’t think so.

Bandon Dunes - Red

The course that started it all, Bandon Dunes. Mike Keiser took a risk on a young, unknown Scotsman named David McClay Kidd and the rest is history! Prior to my visit, I read Dream Golf by Stephan Goodwin and learned that a photo of the 12th green was the postcard “press release” announcing Bandon Dunes. Similar to Pacific Dunes, Bandon Dunes has stunning views of the ocean alongside the course. You know, I drool for natural bodies of water alongside a golf course. Even though I had a personal meltdown with my irons on 16, it was still one of my favorites amongst all the courses on the property. I had a really fun time, try 2x times, getting out of the bunker on 11 (which can be seen on my Instagram).

The Red album is what made Taylor Swift, TAYLOR SWIFT, and that’s why it’s the Bandon Dunes. Note, this is not Taylor’s Version. We’re trekking back to the original Red album because it’s the album that put her on the global map and it separated herself from her country style. We’re not in Teardrops on my Guitar / Tim McGraw territory anymore. This is Treacherous.

Put your lips close to mine

As long as they don't touch

Out of focus, eye to eye

'Til the gravity's too much

And I'll do anything you say

If you say it with your hands

And I'd be smart to walk away

But you're quicksand

This slope is treacherous

This path is reckless

This slope is treacherous

And I, I, I like it

Pacific Dunes - Reputation

When we all played Pac Dunes it was the Fore The Ladies group’s first (and only) day of playing 36 holes. As I approached the first tee, I could hear inside me the first three seconds of Ready For It. You know that beat? It pounds outside of your ears, and it could get nasty if an angsty teen has the ability to mess with the base. I also couldn’t get out of my head the hype Neil from No Laying Up described in their Tourist Sauce series. After repeatedly watching their videos as a part of my Bandon content soup, I was most intimidated by this course. I mean, all golf is hard for me, but I thought this was going to be the toughest challenge. And have you seen the wind we conquered? It practically lifted up my Bill Belichick Zero Restriction jacket on the 11th hole!

The connection to Taylor Swift and Pac Dunes is found within the beat and base of this album. I wasn’t pulled in by any specific set of lyrics but rather the overall sound. There’s a certain boldness in the Reputation album, songs like King of My Heart, Look What You Made Me Do, End Game and ….Ready for It, and they perfectly suit the energy of Pacific Dunes.

Bandon Trails - Evermore

Bandon Trails was the third course built on the property, and Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw faced a difficult challenge: How do you make a dynamite course that doesn’t have the breathtaking ocean views? Challenge accepted. The Fore the Ladies golf community swooned over Trails. My caddy Coop told me that one of the reasons why Coore & Crenshaw are so successful and economically efficient, is that they don’t move sand so much compared to other architects. They have a vision and work with the ground that the earth gave them. I loved playing Trails as the last course on the trip and we were spoiled with a crisp, clear morning. It’s not my number one course on the property, but it’s my number one Forest Course I’ve ever played.