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When standing atop the White Clouds, your eye captures a 360-degree wrap-around view of the Wood River Valley encompassing Bald Mountain, Dollar Mountain, the Pioneer Mountains, Angel's Perch, Devil's Bedstead and the home of Ernest Hemingway. Approaching the 5th tee box, golfers first notice Sun Valley Resort owner's words inscribed in a stone marker, "This is not all about golf."
These few words commemorate his vision when he dedicated this 135-acre parcel of priceless ridge top for Sun Valley Resort's newest nine holes.
The White Clouds at once becomes a mysterious challenge full of intrigue and complements the Trail Creek Course by presenting contrasting play with more sand trap shots, side-hill lies, risk reward and blind shots.
This opening par 4 requires an accurate tee shot between the fairway bunkers and the creek. Longer hitters may choose a fairway wood because driver brings the lake into play through the dogleg.
This short par 3 requires a precise iron shot to a large, undulating green. A large, deep bunker guards the left side of the green, so the safe bail out is short and right. Avoid left on this hole at all costs.
Longer hitters will want to carry the fairway bunkers for a shorter approach to the green. A safe tee shot to the right will leave a longer approach up the hill. The second shot is difficult to a shallow green and plays at least one club longer.
Spectacular views could distract you on this difficult tee shot. A good drive down the right center of the fairway will allow longer hitters to reach the green in two; otherwise three accurate shots are required to this well protected two tiered green.
This long par 5 is a three shot hole and places a premium on course management. Play smart and avoid missing anything left. The tee shot should be played inside the fairway bunkers and the second shot needs to be played as far up the hill as possible to give a look at the green. Shots hit right will funnel down towards the green, however, the green is a reverse tier and slopes from front to back.
This is a classic risk/reward par 4. Longer hitters can attempt to drive the green through the narrow opening of bunkers. The safe play is to aim left of the fairway bunkers and leave a short approach to this small green.
Take a few moments to enjoy the views from the highest set of tees in the valley. The wind is the hardest thing to judge on this hole in order to hit this small bean shaped green. Commit to the shot, but know short and right on this hole is dead.
On this long downhill par 4, tee shots stay in the air forever, but need to favor the right side of the fairway due to a severely sloped fairway. The second shot plays downhill and should also favor the right side of this large undulating green. Avoid the deep bunkers and fallout area left of this green.
This par 4 normally plays downwind. Longer hitters can carry the fairway bunkers on the right to leave a short approach to the green. Distance control is key on the approach shot to this large two tiered green.