Reviewed by: Paul Maurer, Shoot in the 80s, from Birmingham, MI, USA
This is a mature private course with beautiful, hilly terrain. It is fun to play because every hole is unique and offers choices as to strategy of play. It will challenge even the best players, yet is not harshly penal - safe routes are available at every hole. A winding layout means you will not see more than one other hole than the one your are playing. Although you will definitely be tired after 18 holes, walking is the best way to experience the course (and avoid losing balls over blind terrain).
Course is usually in excellent shape. Fairways are generally very good to excellent. Greens are also normally very good. Holding power is usually good, but plan for one good hard bounce. Green speed varies a bit with season, and on average is probably "medium-fast". They putt better when "fast", but are rarely "rocket fast", which is a blessing since most have a fair amount of slope to them. Every green has its own personality. The few greens without radical contours have "general terrain" influences that will affect a putt that looks straight. Slopes around the greens mean you must bring your best short game to score well.
The course is not long, however this is mostly due to short par 4s - only two of the 10 par 4s are over 400 yards. Of the 4 par 5s, only one is realistically reachable in 2. The par 5 6th at 600 yards plus a double dogleg, hills and water is an adventure to reach in 3. There are no easy par 3s - all are uphill. Doglegs and hills make the listed yardages deceiving. The 14th, listed at 167 yards, plays 200 yards plus to a two-tiered green. (Tip: as you walk off the back of No. 1 green sneak a peak down the hill to see the pin location on No. 14 green).
Thinking your way around the course will pay off. The better player can take the majority of hazards out of play with some course knowledge. For all but one or two holes, the "power fade" works well off the tee. Yardages are marked on the sprinkler heads down the center of the fairway. The successful will generously factor in the hills and check their "yardage ego" at the door before selecting a club. Many of the wise tee off with a wood on the par 3 3rd hole(currently under major renovation), while listed at only 156 yards.
There is little water - only two small ponds and some small creeks. With some thought, water can generally be avoided.
While trees abound, most do not come into play.
Likewise there is sand around all but two greens, yet the ball can be bounced into every green if approached from the correct angle. Fairway bunkers have been added in recent years on a few holes - while unwelcome (and not needed architecturally), most are not dangerous.
Golf Professional Mark Kenner has done an outstanding job for many years and is well-liked by the members.
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Clubhouse bar serves typically bar fare. Beautiful view of the course from the upstairs terrace is rarely utilized by the membership but should be.
There is another 9 hole course that is less hilly, but plenty interesting. Walking is easier here and there is less pressure to keep moving.