Blog 145 – Waikerie

135m par3 3rd

Course 45 for 2021 – Waikerie GC, SA

Lush, plays longer than it’s yardage

Nomadic_golfer : October 2021

Par 72, 6064m, slope 121, $40 green fee

4 par3s 121-177m, 10 par4s 296-397m, 4 par5s 449-481m

Always lush and looking a picture in SA’s Riverland, with the contrasting red sand base against the deep green Kentucky Bluegrass & couch fairways and the bentgrass mixed greens. This is never more prevalent than in Spring, with the reds, yellows and many other colours on offer through the native trees. This course is no snack though, despite the predictable, true greens and being bunkerless. There are no bunkers but I like their creativity via: 1. green surrounds are cut low for first couple of metres then left 3 or 4 inches thick, resulting in bad green misses long & wide not missing by as much, but tricky fluffy chips and pitches; 2. there is a 3 foot high grassy patch on the left of the 7th fairway as a bunker substitute; and 3. the mown walking strips off the tees, purely for aesthetic purposes.

You’d better be warmed up and ready to play on the first here as the layout starts tough. A 402m par4 as the 1st, with the first 4 par4s all over 387m, contributing to a front 9 over 3100m, which plays even longer due to the soft fairways. The course was in lovely condition, fairways good, greens had light core but looked good and still putted well, and were of good pace though very soft.

There are a couple of little quirks in design; all par 3s play basically in the same direction, those long 4s on the front nine all shape left to right to some degree and the 3 mid-length par4s come as 3 in a row from 14-16, making recollection of specific holes tricky. My favourite holes – I like the tough start, with 2 ~400m par4’s in opposite directions to kick off; 8 the first short par4 has a 90 degree dogleg left at about 220m, to a green protected by staggered short trees, right then left; 12 a 381m right to left par4 flanked by trees to a green set in a ampitheatre-type setting; and 17 a tough par 3 of 180m with OB left of green and a tough chip from the right hand bail out.

This course is also for sale – that’s 2 in a row for me after Tanunda two days prior! Overall, this is a lovely looking course, typically in good condition. It plays long, does not have bunkers but prepare your pitching and chipping from thick, sticky lies