Nomadic_golfer : January 2022
Par 67, 4827m, slope 113, $15 green fee
6 par3s 122-208m, 11 par4s 247-390m, 1 par5 408m
Australia’s most southern golf course is in the town of Dover, 80km south of Hobart. This 9 holer occupies a really nice parcel of undulating land, a few hundred metres from, and overlooking, Port Esperance, with multiple water views from the course.
There are some interesting little quirks here and as each hole passes, you feel like there is going to be something special around the corner or over the next brow. The first 6 holes are up and back, left of the first is on the boundary and bordered by thick tree growth. You get the same on the last of these holes, the 6th, jungle on the left and a cool, reedy water hazard covering the fairway at driving length. Single rows of trees (mainly gums) separate these 6 holes as you wind your way up and back. There are some decent holes in there but it does take 6 holes to break away from the pattern. They love a blind shot here, right from the starting box where you can only see the crest of a small, steepish hill less than 100m in front of you. There are more blind tee shots than not.
The start (1st 4 holes) is an interesting mix and plays with your emotions; 1 and 4 are super tough holes (a tight 380m par 4 & another tight 170/ 190m par3), 2 and 3 relatively simple (315m par4 and 410m par5). The standout hole for me though is 8, that special one you are waiting for all round that uses the natural assets of this property. The 8th (208m par3)/ 17th (141m par3) on the far Eastern flank of the property, with a tee set on the top of a hill (the 8th is blind, the 17th lays it out in front of you) playing to a squarish green at the bottom of a hill, cornered by two fences (left and long), with a raised ridge and bank on the right. It is unique and has a super view out over the bay. And my favourite quirk is the 7th tee, set on a little rectangle of grass 50m back from the fairway, through a little archway of bushes, very cute!
Condition in middle summer was interesting. The greens had been given a lot of water, and had good grass cover, the surface was smooth but spongey and slow. The tees were a little patchy & uneven, and the rye fairways’ grass cover was not too bad but all were the colour of straw after a cut, which looked a real contrast against the rough which still had a tinge of green.
Overall, it’s a lovely spot for a golf course. It’s short, (6 of the 11 par4s under 300m), gives you plenty of opportunities and has enough interesting little offerings to be worth a hit if you are down in the deep South.