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Played Any Quirky Courses? Name and Details!


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@billchao's mention of Sable Oaks in Maine made me think of this topic. Tobacco Road is definitely another one with its blind shots and visual deception. I would also say Furry Creek near Vancouver, its routing influence by the mountain. Any others?

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Fossil Trace, which is just outside of Denver, is pretty quirky. The 1st hole has a stone monument in the middle of the fairway. It's pretty easy to avoid, but still odd. The 12th hole ha

I think Fossil Trace is a blast, as long as I can stay out of the bunkers.  You just have to remember those few holes with fairway obstacles and play to avoid them.  They had to leave those rock outcr

Boulder Oaks Escondido CA. . The course was closed for a year and re-designed taking what were three isolated holes across the road and moving them back with the others.Lots of waste areas in front of

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1 hour ago, nevets88 said:

@billchao's mention of Sable Oaks in Maine made me think of this topic. Tobacco Road is definitely another one with its blind shots and visual deception. I would also say Furry Creek near Vancouver, its routing influence by the mountain. Any others?

Anything designed by Mike Strantz (including Tobacco Road) with the exception of Caledonia

Koolau (maybe this is just too damn hard, forced carries, and jungle right off the mowed areas)

The Old Course (obviously, hitting over an adjacent building)

Lahinch  (blind second on the par-5 5th crossing the 18th fairway, then the blind par-3 6th)

Stoneleigh, my home course.  Blind shots, stone walls, goofy greens, all designed by one of the very few female architects.

And I'll be honest, I enjoy every one of these.  Although I probably wouldn't care to play Koolau again.

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I just recently played Glens Falls (NY) Country Club.  A Donald Ross routing with many blind tee shots, false fronts, rolling greens.  I consider myself a decent lag putter but missed some first putts by 10 feet or more.

Stonehenge South in Michigan has six par 3, six par 4 and six par 5 holes.  I like the approach, very scoreable (continuing the trend of adding "able" on to any verb in order to make a word).

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45 minutes ago, DaveP043 said:

Stoneleigh, my home course.

I'm glad you said it first :-P

Actually the things I disliked about Sable Oaks are basically the same ones I disliked about Stoneleigh, except minus the wall.

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The quirkiest course I know is a place called Cliffside Golf Course outside of Tipp City, OH.

Just like the name suggests, its lower 18 (the upper nine is a course in a farm field) runs up and down a cliff. You got some big (especially for Ohio) elevation changes and a ton of blind shots. It's a low-cost daily fee course with the maintenance to match. The last time I played it was in the fall. Leaves were everywhere and the floor was like concrete. My best approach shot bounced off a green like it hit a trampoline. 

I actually mean to get out there at some point. The place has been up for sale for awhile, so its days are probably numbered.

 

 

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The quirkiest? Couple of them. One is a 9 hole course outside of Ontario Oregon on the road to Burns Oregon. Just east of Vale Oregon. It's a converted cow/sheep pasture. Some of it is wide open, other parts are in trees, and washes. I can give a better location if anyone is interested. 

The second one is up in north/central Nevada on some out of the way back road. There is no grass at all. Has 6 holes. You get a piece of rug to hit off of, and the greens are made up of packed, sanded, oil mix.  It belongs to a local mining concern. If you stop in, they will let you use it for free. Just watch for rattlesnakes. 

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Fossil Trace, which is just outside of Denver, is pretty quirky.

  • The 1st hole has a stone monument in the middle of the fairway. It's pretty easy to avoid, but still odd.
  • The 12th hole has massive boulders in the middle of the fairway. You have to avoid them, or you're going sideways.
  • The 14th hole has a two tiered green. Not that weird, but the second tier is a good 20-30 feet above the first tier. It's also a small tier. If they put the flag back there, the hole is over 220 yards. The only way to make a par is hit that tiny portion of the green that's the second tier.
  • The 15th hole has an old excavator to the left and behind the green. It's there on purpose. It's out of play, but it's still weird.

The course is also expensive. Even though it's 10 minutes from my house, I play it at most, once a year. The design annoys me too much to deal with it any more frequently. It's too bad, because there are a couple of great holes sprinkled in as well (a couple of risk/reward holes, including 2 driveable par 4s, and a finishing par 5 that can yield an eagle or a double bogey easily).

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Hidden Springs on Living Water Ranch Rd. between Kerrville (about 16 miles) and Harper (a few miles) TX. Off the main highway, you wander through the hills crossing several cattle guards and up a steep road to the clubhouse. Has a great cigar collection because the owner likes 'em. Anyway, this is a real Texas Hill Country course, carved out of a ranch, with limestone rock bluffs along a river that serves as a backdrop for weddings that often are happening while you play through. I remember a par 4 where the approach to the green is pretty much straight up. And another that requires a hook (not a draw) over trees to a green nestled by the river. It's a trip, literally, hell and gone from anywhere! -Marv

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On 8/25/2017 at 10:11 AM, DeadMan said:

Fossil Trace, which is just outside of Denver, is pretty quirky.

  • The 1st hole has a stone monument in the middle of the fairway. It's pretty easy to avoid, but still odd.
  • The 12th hole has massive boulders in the middle of the fairway. You have to avoid them, or you're going sideways.
  • The 14th hole has a two tiered green. Not that weird, but the second tier is a good 20-30 feet above the first tier. It's also a small tier. If they put the flag back there, the hole is over 220 yards. The only way to make a par is hit that tiny portion of the green that's the second tier.
  • The 15th hole has an old excavator to the left and behind the green. It's there on purpose. It's out of play, but it's still weird.

The course is also expensive. Even though it's 10 minutes from my house, I play it at most, once a year. The design annoys me too much to deal with it any more frequently. It's too bad, because there are a couple of great holes sprinkled in as well (a couple of risk/reward holes, including 2 driveable par 4s, and a finishing par 5 that can yield an eagle or a double bogey easily).

I think Fossil Trace is a blast, as long as I can stay out of the bunkers.  You just have to remember those few holes with fairway obstacles and play to avoid them.  They had to leave those rock outcrops in the 12th fairway for environmentalist concerns or they wouldn't have been allowed to build the course.  There are a lot of fossils in the rocks there.  The brick monolith in the first fairway has some historical significance - some sort of furnace or kiln.  My brother and I usually try to play the course at least once whenever he comes down from Idaho.

Evergreen was probably the quirkiest one I ever played.  I played it twice back in the 70's with friends.  At one point there were 2 par 4 holes where the fairways crossed each other (looking on Google Maps I can't see this, so it may have been changed in the last 40 years).  One par 3 hole you have to shoot over a big rock, and to know where to aim, they have a big arrow painted on the rock (this hole hasn't changed).

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Boulder Oaks Escondido CA. . The course was closed for a year and re-designed taking what were three isolated holes across the road and moving them back with the others.Lots of waste areas in front of the tee boxes that you have to go over. These are mostly desert succulents, cacti, scrub and white sand. Some tall fox grass. High Mountain vistas, some hitting down maybe 200 yards or so. Raised greens that have so much of a slope, it is nigh impossible to putt any down hillers without rolling 30 yards off the green. Huge boulders in middle left of one of the fairways, blind shot. Wooded areas on an approach downhill onto the 17th (I think). Plays a lot like a links course. 

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On 10/2/2017 at 11:46 AM, Fourputt said:

I think Fossil Trace is a blast, as long as I can stay out of the bunkers.  You just have to remember those few holes with fairway obstacles and play to avoid them.  They had to leave those rock outcrops in the 12th fairway for environmentalist concerns or they wouldn't have been allowed to build the course.  There are a lot of fossils in the rocks there.  The brick monolith in the first fairway has some historical significance - some sort of furnace or kiln.  My brother and I usually try to play the course at least once whenever he comes down from Idaho.

Hmm, I didn't know that about the rocks in the 12th fairway. A part of why I don't like Fossil Trace is how expensive it is. I'd put up with the couple of bad holes for a $50 green fee, but $80... nah. 12 annoys me, and 14 drives me up the wall if they put the pin on the back tier. Whoever thought a 220 yard par 3 with a tiny landing area to make a par is a good idea deserves a good flogging.

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12 hours ago, DeadMan said:

Hmm, I didn't know that about the rocks in the 12th fairway. A part of why I don't like Fossil Trace is how expensive it is. I'd put up with the couple of bad holes for a $50 green fee, but $80... nah. 12 annoys me, and 14 drives me up the wall if they put the pin on the back tier. Whoever thought a 220 yard par 3 with a tiny landing area to make a par is a good idea deserves a good flogging.

As many times as I've played Fossil Trace, I've never seen the hole cut in the upper level on that hole.  That makes it more of a funnel, with the ball kicking down on or near the green from most right side misses, and anything long usually comes back down that long slope.  Also, it's never been 220 yards for me, as I don't play the tips- I think it's more like 190-200 where I play it.  But, no course will be everyone's cup of tea.  

I like Fossil because it's usually in impeccable condition, and these days $80 seems more like a mid range priced course.  In the past, I've paid $100 at Pole Creek for at least 3 rounds in a year, and it was many years ago that I paid $125 at Arrowhead and felt like it was worth the cost as long as I didn't do it too often.  

Now I buy the Colorado Avid Golfer Passport and get Pole Creek for half price, and get price breaks of varying levels at a lot of different Colorado courses.

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Played plenty of "quirky" holes on traditional course all over the place. Such as a 90* dogleg par 4 that require a 5 iron to the corner (a VERY NARROW SLOT) with at least a 3 wood to the green through that slot with a tree in the middle. No chance of cutting the corner, either. A short Par 3 that was higher than it was long leaving the green looking like a teenagers face after a bag of chocolate the night before the big dance. Almost every course has it's quirky hole.

But for overall quirky-ness, several of the local courses and pitch and putts scattered over Ireland and Scotland I found in my travels over there. Actual "Goat Tracks" so to speak. Wire fences with gates around the greens to keep the sheep off, ACTUAL sheep in the fairways, blind shots, no sense of direction where the next hole MIGHT be, Honor Boxes, No cart girl, etc... The quirkyness was just being the way the game was played 50-100 years ago, only with modern equipment. As well as being played in some of the most beautiful scenery ever. The least quirky course was a little pitch and putt just outside of Dingle Town overlooking the Harbor. At about 7pm just before the sun went down, any professional photographer would have been drooling over the light conditions.

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On 10/2/2017 at 11:46 AM, Fourputt said:

I think Fossil Trace is a blast, as long as I can stay out of the bunkers.  You just have to remember those few holes with fairway obstacles and play to avoid them.  They had to leave those rock outcrops in the 12th fairway for environmentalist concerns or they wouldn't have been allowed to build the course.  There are a lot of fossils in the rocks there.  The brick monolith in the first fairway has some historical significance - some sort of furnace or kiln.  My brother and I usually try to play the course at least once whenever he comes down from Idaho.

Evergreen was probably the quirkiest one I ever played.  I played it twice back in the 70's with friends.  At one point there were 2 par 4 holes where the fairways crossed each other (looking on Google Maps I can't see this, so it may have been changed in the last 40 years).  One par 3 hole you have to shoot over a big rock, and to know where to aim, they have a big arrow painted on the rock (this hole hasn't changed).

I was going to mention Evergreen. Lots of blind shots, driveable par4s, etc.. And here's the par3 over the rocks... 

Evergreen-Par3.jpg

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I played a place called Moorsetown field club in southern NJ years ago and it had many rectangular type greens with these kind of trench bunkers all around them. From what i remember its one of the oldest courses in the country. Apparenlty green complexes like that used to be common, but its still somewhat off putting hitting into greens with such hard angles.  

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Quirky Course...Franklinton Country Club, Franklinton, LA.....quirky thing is that there is a small local airport near and every hole breaks to that airport, no matter where you are or what hole you are on., no matter what it looks like to your or how you read it..Until you figure that out, you haven't got a prayer...

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