Date: 2007-Sep-11 Review by Alberta Bound
Greens were very good. They had top dressed about 4 of them on the day we played but were still ok. They were of normal size with lots of bunkers protecting them. Green side bunkers were well cared for with enough rakes. The fringe was even around the greens. Some had a couple of levels and a few undulations. I did not notice any green that had severe slopes.
They were very lush and green. The grass was just a little too high for my liking as I like to get a lot of roll but it helps set the ball up for your next shot. The fairway bunkers were well cared for with enough rakes. The bunkers gave a very nice look to the various holes. The sprinkler heads were marked and they had 200, 150 and 100 yards marked as well. The first cut was even and wide enough that the ball would not roll into the dense woods that lined one side of a number of fairways. There was generous landing room on most of the fairways. All the bunkers had plenty of soft sand.
The tees were excellent. They were cut short, soft and level. They had three good size tee boxes for each hole. All the holes had ball washer, garbage, bench, nice signage and some had flowers. On two holes where water came into play off the tee they had the yardage posted to the water. This is great for first time players as you know what club to select and it speeds up play.
I like the lay out of the course. They had a number of holes with the Paddle River running along the side of the hole. There were other holes that had lakes and ponds for us to navigate around. Bunkers play a major role in the design and look of the course. There is not much in the way of elevation change so walking the course would be easy. Fairways were framed with mature trees on one side and on a number of holes the first cut gave way to some dense bush and forest. Each hole was different and interesting with no out and back type of format. Three of the par threes were of average design with one having a lake to the left and large bunkers on the right and left. Number 15 had a lake that crossed the fairway that required a carry of around 220 yards from the white. Lay up or go over. Number six is a great hole as you are faced with a the river coming at you and a ravine you have to carry. You do need a good drive to cross this hazard. A great hole.
Excellent value as this is a quality course in good shape. The GPS on the carts is an added bonus. They do run mid week specials. We played on a Tuesday for $25. Other courses of this caliber would cost a lot more in the city.
The slopes are one 127 from the white and 132 from the blues, the reds are 120. The slope indicates that you are facing a challenge when you play this course. The design, bunkers, and water all add to the difficulty of the course. The length is 6644 and 6065 from the blues and whites. Even though it is tougher then the average course it is a pleasure to play.
The holes were framed very nicely with trees along the fairways and around the green. On a few holes the views of the river were very good. The ponds and bunkers added a lot to the course and the views from the tees.
All the staff we meet were friendly and helpful
The club house is attractive and large enough with a pro shop that was short of items but it may have been because we are getting near the end of the season. They had a large balcony with view for the course and a large enough area where they could hold a good size function. The building looked like it was fairly new and in good shape. The menu had the traditional club house food
There were a number of good features. They had a driving range and a putting green. Cart paths were of gravel and paved and were continuous for the 18 holes. Power carts were electric and they came with GPS. The washrooms were located so they severed more then one fairway and were better then port potties. Parking lot was gravel and big enough to serve their needs. Signage along the cart paths was excellent so you knew where you were going . The score card has 15 tips for eliminating slow play. We got around in 3 hrs and 25 minutes so it might be working.
This course is a recommend play. It is about 1 hour and 15 minutes from Edmonton and is well worth the drive. Even though I only gave it a 7 for scenery it could have been an 8 just as easily except the last four holes are on top away from the river and have more open feeling. I would certainly recommend this for anyone in the area or in Edmonton. At least play it once or twice a year. One of those "hidden gems".