Golf

  • BigWerm
    Participant
    SW Metro
    Posts: 9603
    #2214370

    I know this is a curse word to a few of you on here, so feel free to skip this thread. But for those of you who do golf a lot or a little, I thought it’d be a good thread for anything golf related.

    I played in a Ryder Cup style event last weekend, called the Divider Cup, that my buddy from Wisco started as a fun competition between his MN and WI friends. He usually hosts at a nicer course in MN and WI, with the last few being Dakota Ridge, Lawsonia, Troy Burne and this year being at Wild Rock by the Dells. This was an awesome course imo, that was challenging but very playable with wide open fairways that even I occassionally hit. My only complaint was cart path only on Friday and 4 holes cart path only Sunday due to all the rain they got. As a guy with a slice problem on a course with predominantly left side cart paths, I put some miles on! Any course recommendations for a big group like this? Unfortunately the northern MN (Brainerd or further north) or far Eastern WI courses are a little too far of a drive for about half the crew.

    I also bought a new driver, turns out that doesn’t fix a slice rotflol , and yes I know what the problem is and am working on fixing it.

    Also, for one of my rounds my partner got hurt right before the weekend, so I got to play a 2 ball scramble for one round Saturday. And while I know it doesn’t really reflect anything about my game, that was one of the most fun rounds I’ve played ever, and a round about 20 strokes lower than I shot outside of it.

    Finally, despite having well broke in golf shoes, I ended up with a bunch of blisters after Friday/Saturday morning, and played the last 2 rounds barefoot. Which was also awesome.

    gimruis
    Participant
    Plymouth, MN
    Posts: 13991
    #2214372

    and this year being at Wild Rock by the Dells. This was an awesome course imo

    I’ve played there. Really nice track. It was also after a heavy rain ironically, so they restricted carts to mostly paths during our round there too. I think this was back in 2015 during a weekend bachelor party in the Dells and I played pretty good too, I think I scored 84 which was second low round amongst 16 people.

    I’ve since pretty much stopped playing golf because its so time consuming and expensive. Maybe I’ll pick it back up when I retire. I played in HS for multiple years but when you are able to practice or play every day you can get to be pretty darn good! Once a month isn’t going to cut it, and I was just a hack out there once it came to that, which kind of ruined the fun for me. My old man is long retired and he plays about 3-4 times/week. He’s 73 years old and his handicap is a 3 for 9 holes which is impressive for someone his age.

    I’d definitely recommend the Chaska Town Course. Its probably not far from you. Difficult course, but very nice. The 18th hole is something else, its like a Minnesota version of Pebble Beach.

    Justin Donson
    Participant
    Posts: 327
    #2214373

    I love golf!

    I used to play a lot more before I got married and had kids, now I only get out a handful of times a year. Hoping that I can get my youngest son into it though, I have so many fond memories of playing with my Dad.

    I was a member at Stoneridge over in Woodbury like 8-10 years ago, almost won the club championship out there one year, which was basically the peak of my golf existence. I don’t think I ever got to truly scratch, but I think I was down to a 1.4 handicap.

    Stoneridge is a GREAT course, maybe just a tiny step down from Troy Burne. It’s challenging, while still being somewhat forgiving off the tee. Some big numbers out there though if you’re not good around the greens or bunkers/waste areas. It’s links style with elevated/crowned greens. I haven’t played there in a few years though, so I can’t speak to the conditions. Not a ton of OB on the course and very little water, but all the OB is on the right lol. They have great food at the on-course restaurant as well, so if you want to parlay your round into a nice steak dinner or something this is a good bet!

    As for other courses, the Jewel down in Lake City is a great course that’s not far from Wisconsin, but that is further south.

    The Royal golf club in Lake Elmo is another nice course to look at, although again I think it’s a step below Troy Burne. It was formerly owned by 3M and called Tartan Park. It was bought out and then redesigned as an 18 hole track, Annika Sorenstam designed the front 9 and Arnold Palmer designed the back. It may have been the last course Arnie worked on before passing away, but don’t quote me on that!

    If it wasn’t for a few really weird/wonky holes, I’d suggest White Eagle as well. If you’re group isn’t super snooty about course design it’s a fun track, lots of elevation change, but a few holes are just too much ‘target golf’ for me.

    gimruis
    Participant
    Plymouth, MN
    Posts: 13991
    #2214374

    White Eagle

    I’ve played there too. Some of the holes were very unique.

    I’m sure Justin would agree with me that the key to putting up a decent score is to hone your short game. You can save a lot of strokes by getting up and down, avoiding 3 putts, and making a few birdies. In HS it was always trying to show off with long drives, but our coach really tried in ingrain into our teenage heads that the short game is what won matches. If you think about it, almost half your strokes on the card are putts.

    BTW the nicest course I’ve ever played is Bearpath in Eden Prairie. I caddied out there one summer and they let us play there twice on a Monday when the course was closed to members every week for maintenance. Its a Jack Nicklaus course. Not overly difficult, but just super nice. The fairways are like plush carpet. I can’t even imagine what an annual membership is there nowadays.

    Charlie W
    Participant
    TRF / Pool 3 / Grand Rapids, MN / SJU
    Posts: 980
    #2214375

    I second The Jewel. If you haven’t played it, you gotta. It’s great.

    BigWerm
    Participant
    SW Metro
    Posts: 9603
    #2214378

    Chaska Town Course

    Yeah that is a great track, and very affordable for those of us in Chaska/Carver, not so much for out of towners but still worth it imo. For a value course close to home I like Ridges at Sand Creek in Jordan, but wouldn’t be spot for this event.

    Wild Rock greens have a TON of undulation, and were supposedly an 11 on the stimpmeter but I didn’t think they were burdensome. Good point Gim, easiest way to go from shooting 100 to 82, is to go from average 2.5 putts to 1.5.

    Randy Wieland
    Participant
    Lebanon. WI
    Posts: 13280
    #2214379

    I just need to shout out a big thank you to all you golfers with horrible aim. In nearly 50 years of fishing tributaries along the Great Lakes, most have golf courses in them. I have yet to have anyone who has tried to hit me. I appreciate very much your inability to hit an old fat target.

    gimruis
    Participant
    Plymouth, MN
    Posts: 13991
    #2214380

    Good point Gim, easiest way to go from shooting 100 to 82, is to go from average 2.5 putts to 1.5.

    Its just simple math, really. Unfortunately that’s the part of the game that goes rusty for me when I don’t play regularly. Its soft touch and feel.

    Ripjiggen
    Participant
    Posts: 9943
    #2214382

    I thought the easiest way to get from 100 to 82 was quit after 9.

    BigWerm
    Participant
    SW Metro
    Posts: 9603
    #2214383

    I thought the easiest way to get from 100 to 82 was quit after 9.

    I resemble that remark lol

    crappie55369
    Participant
    Mound, MN
    Posts: 5757
    #2214386

    i used to play golf a lot more in my 20s, then got out of it for about 8 years and this year im trying to get back into it. I quit cause my back just couldnt handle it. This year so far so good with the back.

    still trying to get my swing back. honestly was surprised i retained as much muscle memory as i did. i have a slice on about 60% of my drives, do ok in the mid game and ok at putting but from 100 yards in chipping i am trash. My main problem seems to be, and always has been, that i struggle hitting off of hard ground, like compacted dirt… and since im rarely in the fairway lol this is often what im hitting off of. If anyone has a trick for that let me know.

    I was just in your neck of the woods werm and played stonebrooke in shakopee. Was a nice course but a little too hoity toity for my liking. I often play at shadowbrooke out past hollywood on hwy 7. its a nice course and they have good rates

    BigWerm
    Participant
    SW Metro
    Posts: 9603
    #2214387

    BTW the nicest course I’ve ever played is Bearpath in Eden Prairie.

    I’ve had the opportunity to play there a few times, but the stars didn’t align schedule wise. I’ve heard nothing but good things, and membership isn’t as crazy as it once was (used to be like 50-100k initial + annual dues), but does fluctuate quite a bit. I’ve seen some rankings that put Bearpath and Olympic Hills in EP up there with some of the other best courses in the state. I’ve played all the Brainerd and Biwabik courses, which are the best I’ve played in the state.

    gimruis
    Participant
    Plymouth, MN
    Posts: 13991
    #2214388

    Paul Douglas has a house on the 17th hole at Bearpath. Or at least he used to. You could always tell which house was his because he had all kinds of weather instrumentation on his roof.

    BigWerm
    Participant
    SW Metro
    Posts: 9603
    #2214389

    I was just in your neck of the woods werm and played stonebrooke in shakopee. Was a nice course but a little to hoity toity for my liking. I often play at shadowbrooke out past hollywood on hwy 7. its a nice course and they have good rates

    Good to know on Shadowbrooke, I’ll check it out sometime. I played Stonebrooke for the first time recently, and agree with you. They seem to think it’s an elite course, but the actual course is just ok imo. Clubhouse is very nice, but a tiny putting green and driving range a half mile away. I’ll be playing Burl Oaks in a couple weeks, which should be a good time and nice track.

    CaptainMusky
    Participant
    Posts: 17614
    #2214391

    I havent golfed in a while, but my favorite course (besides Pines at Grand View) is Albion Ridges near Annandale. Links style course and I had my best round ever there the last time I played. I was -1 through 13 holes and then it went pear shaped and finished +3.

    BigWerm
    Participant
    SW Metro
    Posts: 9603
    #2214393

    Also, fwiw Lawsonia in Wisconsin was the most ridiculously hard course I’ve ever played. Their Links course had endless blind shots, fescue that evaporated balls, and plays stupid long for 6500-6800 yards. I think I shot a 126 there while playing with a 3 handicap that shot an 89. Both the Links and Woodland were beautiful courses, that were way too hard for average to slightly above average golfers imo.

    fishthumper
    Participant
    Sartell, MN.
    Posts: 10111
    #2214395

    I got into golfing a fair amount the last 3 summers. My main fishing buddy got a corp. membership at Blackberry Ridge golf course here in Sartell. Really nice course by the way. One of the reasons I look forward to our fall Canada trip is because despite being that far North, it has a incredible course near where we stay. If the wind is a little strong and we want to take a break from fishing we spend a day or two on the golf course. The course there is called Rolling pines. It is near Tobin lake in Saskatchewan. I’m thinking that may be a little far for your gathering grin Beautiful little course. In all the timers we have played it only seen 2 or 3 other players on the course. Then again this is early Sept. in Canada.

    CaptainMusky
    Participant
    Posts: 17614
    #2214396

    Hardest course I ever played was Brackets Crossing in Lakeville when in HS. It was in “PGA Championship” conditions when it was at Hazeltine that year and it was tougher than heck! IDK what I managed to hack around that course, but it wasnt good.

    Brittman
    Participant
    Posts: 1483
    #2214397

    Finding a good golf course in the TC metro is not too difficult.

    I can say the best course I have played is TPC Blaine (I suppose it helps I have played well there). I have played Hazeltine four times – that is a long course. The round WILL take you 4 – 4.5 hours and make sure you have a caddie. Both courses – you better know how to play the sand.

    East Side
    Troy Bourne is really one of the best courses around – definitely the best on the eastside. I have played Stone Ridge countless times too – great course except for the 9th hole (short par 3) that is really on the back. Logger’s Trail is a very nice “poor man’s” course that comes somewhat close to those two above. The course is great, but they still operate out of a doublewide trailer clubhouse. Keller! If you have not played Keller – you need to. The history (albeit before most of us were born) there is incredible.

    Played a few of the mid-range private CCs. They are OK – membership gives you access and some level of privacy, but not necessarily the best course.

    I remember when The Wilds became the first “public” golf course that was >$100 a round … in the fall you could pay the temperature at tee off.

    gimruis
    Participant
    Plymouth, MN
    Posts: 13991
    #2214399

    My main problem seems to be, and always has been, that i struggle hitting off of hard ground, like compacted dirt… and since im rarely in the fairway lol this is often what im hitting off of. If anyone has a trick for that let me know.

    LOL I’m sure the fact that we’re now in a extreme drought status isn’t helping the “hard compacted ground” issue. They don’t water the rough. No amount of water coming from a sprinkler is going to keep the entire course in lush, green shape in a drought. Maybe try to pick it without taking a divot but the risk with that is that you might shank or blade it lol

    BigWerm
    Participant
    SW Metro
    Posts: 9603
    #2214400

    Blackberry Ridge

    That is a nice course that has come a long ways, the back 9 used to be a wide open corn field. I like Territories in St. Cloud too. Oak Hill is a great value course, and I saw they had a $25/person with a cart deal on Wednesdays for a foursome. Doesn’t get cheaper than that on a decent track!

    I was on my break from golf when I lived in StP, so I don’t have much experience on the east side, sounds like I need to change that tho! Thanks Brittman!

    Joe Jarl
    Participant
    SW Wright County
    Posts: 1502
    #2214402

    I havent golfed in a while, but my favorite course (besides Pines at Grand View) is Albion Ridges near Annandale. Links style course and I had my best round ever there the last time I played. I was -1 through 13 holes and then it went pear shaped and finished +3.

    Played Albion a lot back in the 90’s/early 00’s. At that time it was a nice course for guys like me that couldn’t keep a drive on the fairway. Haven’t golfed much in the past 10 years due to a messed up shoulder. I do miss it though.

    CaptainMusky
    Participant
    Posts: 17614
    #2214407

    That is around the same timeframe I golfed it Joe! Its a very nice course I think and the 3 sets of 9 holes are all unique. I really like the one hole on the 3rd 9 holes that you essentially aim right at a silo or barn (been so long I forget) and hope to clear it to wind up in perfect position in the fairway.

    big_g
    Participant
    Isle, MN
    Posts: 21629
    #2214410

    This thread brings a tear to my eye… For 2 years, while living on Maui, I played multiple times a week. I played all the Wailea Courses… I lived on the Blue Course, Hole #11, but Emerald was my favorite. I played the Kapalua Bay Course a couple dozen times and the Kapalua Plantation (where the Sentry TOC is played every year) 3 times… talk about a challenge ! Since moving back in September of 2021.. I have been golfing exactly ZERO times … doah Breaking my leg didn’t help the cause, but I have been recovered enough where I need to get out. Also, going from the courses on Maui, to Fiddlestix in Isle, will be a let down crazy Plenty of nice courses in Brainerd to play… this has inspired me to get the bag out and get at it !!! chased

    Speaking of Albion Ridges… my brother and I played there the day they opened… it had to be the late 80’s or early 90’s. It started as 18 then they added the Boulder Course across the street for 27. Nice course, we played it about 4 years ago… much different with the mature trees now !

    (The silo is hole #1 on Boulder)

    mojogunter
    Participant
    Posts: 3098
    #2214414

    My favorite course to play is Blackwolf Run(River Course) in Kohler WI. Torrey Pines is another personal favorite. The most difficult would be Whistling Straits. I played there in the year the PGA was going to be there. They had grown out the rough by 30% for the pros. That, and it was really windy made for a long day. Plans to play at Pebble Beach are in the works. I have been there before, but just had lunch. It looks beautiful.

    gimruis
    Participant
    Plymouth, MN
    Posts: 13991
    #2214419

    My Father and 7 of his friends went to Ireland in 2017 for a week long golf trip. This was one of the courses they played in Cork, Ireland. Kind of the birthplace of golf if you will.

    https://www.oldhead.com/

    BigWerm
    Participant
    SW Metro
    Posts: 9603
    #2214421

    Big G and Mojo just escalated things quickly! rotflol rotflol Those are some bucket list courses!

    Brittman
    Participant
    Posts: 1483
    #2214422

    My son is a near-scratch golfer … in the back half of his 20s, he has already played Pebble and Whistling.

    I had a deal with him that if he finished college in 4 years we would go to Scottland and play. It took him 4 1/2 years. Not sure who was more disappointed me or him.

    fishthumper
    Participant
    Sartell, MN.
    Posts: 10111
    #2214428

    My favorite course to play is Blackwolf Run(River Course) in Kohler WI.

    I played that course in my younger days in my 1st go-around with Golf. It was a groomsmen outing. I do remember it was the nicest course that I had played at that point in my playing career. Been to long to remember it to well.

    Brad Dimond
    Participant
    Posts: 1252
    #2214429

    I played Lawsonia a lot while in college. They gave college students a ridiculously low rate and would let you play 36 holes for a single greens fee. The only drawback was no beer on the course, it’s on the American Baptist Assembly grounds and they don’t drink.

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