Nomadic_golfer : October 2021
Par 73, 5932, slope 126, $20 green fee
4 par3s 134-186m, 9 par4s 282-390m, 5 par5s 436-475m
This is a clever layout in a beautiful setting amongst farms at the top of the Limestone Coast in the South East of SA. The course is situated 5km out of Keith, the lucerne capital of Australia. Gums and lots of pines adorn this moderately undulating terrain, and combined with the sand/ loamy base, results in a very natural looking golf course, which doesn’t have many bunkers.
The par 73 contains 5 par 5’s, with 3 of these in the first 6 holes. I love the start, it’s quite tight for the first few holes but gives you a chance for a really hot start – the first 2 holes are 5s (the first is only 436m, narrowing right up at the green and is a ripper of a risk/ reward approach), 3 is a tight & short risk/ reward type par4, 4 is a beautiful 130m uphill among trees and bushes, then the 6th is another ‘reachable’ par 5. Find the fairways with your driver out of the blocks in the first hour and you will set yourself up for a good day.
Not everything is tight, there is a good mix of fairway widths and while there are trees aplenty, there are some holes where missing fairways isn’t overly penal. After the start, I like the 143m 9th, over a little valley to a green sloping steeply down to the right with a bunker short right and pines left.
On the back, the 2 strong par 4’s were my favourites: 12 (a 390m left to right, downhill for your second with a row of pines and OB right, and gum trees left in a magic setting) and 15 (uphill 353m sweeping right to left), while I liked the simplicity of the short par 4 17th. It’s 315m straightaway down the fairway with the green tucked left almost behind the row of trees framing the fairway. If you think you can get close enough to chip your 2nd, take it on down the left. If not, play out right and leave a straightforward pitch.
The fairways consist of both kikuyu and couch and preferred lies are taken. The greens are now all saltwater couch after the couch took over the bentgrass some time back, and had just been scarified on my arrival.
Overall, this is a quality layout and one which does present opportunities to score well. Miss fairways repeatedly however, and this will not occur. That sounds like a good design to me! Condition isn’t it’s strength but it’s good enough not to detract from the experience here.