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GregB135

Florida League Course Reviews

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I've just started my second season playing in a local Florida amateur league. We average a field of 36 players in two handicapped flights with individual handicaps ranging from low single digits to 30+.

 

Since I'm offering only course reviews, I will leave the league name out, and say only that we play on West Central Florida area courses. Some of the venues will be more well known than others, but I will do my best to give a fair assessment of the courses as we go. Where possible I will include a link and the rating/slope of the tees played, and a general feeling on the course from that day's players.

 

I'll use a three tiered price rating:

Under $50 - $

$50-75       - $$  

$75+          - $$$

  • Like 2

Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Week 1: Lakewood National - Lakewood Ranch Florida

Tees Played: National (blue) 70.2/130 6,374 yds

Conditions: Sunny, moderate, light breeze

Price: $$$ ($75+)

http://www.lakewoodnationalgc.com/

 

Lakewood National is one of the newer venues in our area, and is in a location convenient to many central Florida travel spots (Tampa, Orlando, Ft.Myers). The course (courses in the future) is the centerpiece of a large planned community under development. As it stands now, the course has a wide open feel and look that will diminish as development continues to add more homes/condos along the course routes.

 

The course conditions were fantastic for a new track that is still maturing. The fairways were well manicured and very playable (I needed to be in more of them). The greens showed their youth, as they were still pretty firm, and even good iron shots into them tended to roll out a bit rather than grab and check up. The greens also had lots of contour, and played very fast - posted stimp reading was 12 the morning we played, but they rolled very true. The rating and slope should say it all. If you stay in or near the fairway, your score will reflect it. If you have too many wayward shots, the rough and hazards will take their toll (and then some).

 

Range/Practice facilities were first rate. All grass range had plenty of space. Large practice green adjacent to range for chipping/putting as well as a first tee practice green for putting only. Both practice greens had lots of contour, which matched the course, but finding a flat putt to work on line was a challenge. The clubhouse is new and shows it. Clean and well stocked for most essentials. There is no dining option on site yet.

 

People/Customer service were all exceptional. Every employee we dealt with was courteous and genuine in their efforts to make our visit a positive experience.

 

A definite recommend for those seeking a fun challenging round.


Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Week 3: Sanctuary Ridge Golf Club, Clermont FL (I didn't play week 2)

Tees Played: Blue  67.5/113  6,143 yds

Conditions: Sunny, Mild, Moderate Breeze

Price: $  (Under $50)

https://www.sanctuaryridgecfl.com/

 

An Orlando area course that is a bit off the beaten path. Easy to reach though from 'resort central' in Orlando. An established public course with lots of elevation change (rare for Florida) and character enough to make you think your way around the shorter total yardage.

 

Overall the course showed that it is a true public venue. The grounds on our day of play were what most would consider average to below average. Several of the fairways had bare spots, while others had either encroaching weeds or large wet areas despite no recent rain. The greens were in fair condition and would hold a good shot. Speed on the greens was moderate but consistent but tended to be less than smooth and did not provide a consistent true roll through the round. The course played to it's rating slope numbers. Only truly wild shots were punished. You could get away with a moderate miss and still have a chance to recover your par. There were some areas of deep rough along the slopes surrounding the fairways and greens, as well as some areas that played as waste/playable hazard for us on our early spring date, that would be water hazards during the rainy season.

 

The practice facilities were minimal with a cramped and well worn grass tee range which had no immediate cart access, and a small severely sloped putting green adjacent to the clubhouse. The clubhouse itself was very sparsely stocked, so unless you need only the barest essentials there wasn't much.

 

We didn't encounter many course employees, but the ones we did were friendly and accommodating.

 

Overall the general opinion was we wished we had been able to play the course while it was in peak condition. A date later in the summer or early fall when nature has taken care of a lot of the daily watering and the fairway turf is a little more robust would hopefully make a difference for the better. The layout and design are terrific and every hole has some unique character. As mentioned, the elevation changes throughout the course make for a different feel from what most expect from Florida golf.  

 

If planning a trip to the area, I wouldn't recommend this as the premier or highlight of the trip stop, but if you are looking for a starting venue to get warmed up and have some fun at a comparative bargain to its big resort style neighbors, Sanctuary Ridge is a decent option.

  • Like 1

Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Week 3: Sanctuary Ridge Golf Club, Clermont FL (I didn't play week 2)

Tees Played: Blue 67.5/113 6,143 yds

Conditions: Sunny, Mild, Moderate Breeze

Price: $ (Under $50)

https://www.sanctuaryridgecfl.com/

 

An Orlando area course that is a bit off the beaten path. Easy to reach though from 'resort central' in Orlando. An established public course with lots of elevation change (rare for Florida) and character enough to make you think your way around the shorter total yardage.

 

Overall the course showed that it is a true public venue. The grounds on our day of play were what most would consider average to below average. Several of the fairways had bare spots, while others had either encroaching weeds or large wet areas despite no recent rain. The greens were in fair condition and would hold a good shot. Speed on the greens was moderate but consistent but tended to be less than smooth and did not provide a consistent true roll through the round. The course played to it's rating slope numbers. Only truly wild shots were punished. You could get away with a moderate miss and still have a chance to recover your par. There were some areas of deep rough along the slopes surrounding the fairways and greens, as well as some areas that played as waste/playable hazard for us on our early spring date, that would be water hazards during the rainy season.

 

The practice facilities were minimal with a cramped and well worn grass tee range which had no immediate cart access, and a small severely sloped putting green adjacent to the clubhouse. The clubhouse itself was very sparsely stocked, so unless you need only the barest essentials there wasn't much.

 

We didn't encounter many course employees, but the ones we did were friendly and accommodating.

 

Overall the general opinion was we wished we had been able to play the course while it was in peak condition. A date later in the summer or early fall when nature has taken care of a lot of the daily watering and the fairway turf is a little more robust would hopefully make a difference for the better. The layout and design are terrific and every hole has some unique character. As mentioned, the elevation changes throughout the course make for a different feel from what most expect from Florida golf.

 

If planning a trip to the area, I wouldn't recommend this as the premier or highlight of the trip stop, but if you are looking for a starting venue to get warmed up and have some fun at a comparative bargain to its big resort style neighbors, Sanctuary Ridge is a decent option.

I've played this course and your assessment is spot on!

 

MDGolfHacker


What's In This Lefty's Bag?

Driver: :cobra-small: F8 9.5° Project X Even Flow Blue 65g shaft 

Fairway Woods: :cobra-small: F8 3W Project X Even Flow Blue 75g shaft

Fairway Woods: :cobra-small: F8 5W Project X Even Flow Blue 75g shaft

Hybrid: :titelist-small: 816H2 19°

Irons: :mizuno-small: MP-20 SEL Project X 5.5 shafts 5-PW

           :mizuno-small: MP-20 HMB Project X 5.5 shaft 4 Iron

Wedge: :cleveland-small: Tour Satin RTX 4 Wedges in 52° and 56° 2 Dot

Putter: :nevercompromise-small: Gray Matter TDP 2.2 32.75"

Bag: :1590477705_SunMountain: Three 5

Ball:  :srixon-small: Z*Star

RangeFinder:918457628_PrecisionPro: NX7 Pro

Social Media:

Facebook:   md golfhacker
Twitter:        @mdgolfhacker
Instagram:   mdgolfhacker

 Currently Testing: :skycaddie: LX5 Watch

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Thanks MD. Appreciate the feedback. More to follow in a couple of weeks.

  • Like 1

Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Thanks MD. Appreciate the feedback. More to follow in a couple of weeks.

Awesome course reviews! What a great value for guys living in the Central Florida area, keep it up :)

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Week 4: World Woods, Pine Barrens. Brockville FL

Tees Played: Green 70.2/125 6,458 yds

Conditions: Cloudy and warm, very light breeze

Price: $ (Under $50)

https://www.worldwoods.com

 

World Woods opened in the early 90s as one of the first pure golf resorts near the Tampa area. It's location in Brooksville is still going to be a road trip of it's own from either Tampa/St.Pete or the Orlando resort areas - door to door for me from east of Tampa was 1:20. So plan to make a day of it if you are including World Woods on your calendar. The good news is you can get a discounted replay rate for a second round the same day. 

 

The course conditions were on the better side of good but not fantastic. Our date of play had not seen any significant rain for a while. Even so, the tees were all well manicured, level and more than playable. Fairways were free of any bare spots and edge to edge had great turf to play from. One somewhat unique characteristic to the course is all sand areas are considered waste area rather than bunker, so grounding clubs and removing impediments is permitted. Many of the fairways had waste collection areas along either side so expect to recall those rules - dutifully briefed by the starter at the first tee. World Woods is an annual site for our group, and as such, many of us remarked that the greens were atypically slow. I'll give some benefit of the doubt here and guess they were not cut as short as usual due to the dry conditions. Either way, we battled with inconsistent speeds and the occasional roll that was less than true. It made for a challenging day on greens that already have lots of contour and deceptive angles. Needless to say, several of us gave up a few strokes on the greens. There is very little designated out of bounds, so there is ample room to miss your shot and still be in play. If you miss badly though, expect it to cost you a stroke or two with the trees and waste areas to deal with (trust me).

 

The practice facilities are first rate all around. Two all grass ranges, one designated for irons only, a putting course, chipping green, and 3-hole practice course are all available for use prior to your round and located between the two starting holes. The putting course is challenging, and there isn't a flat putt on it anywhere. It truly preps you for the courses' greens, but doesn't offer the opportunity to dial in line as much as speed an break. 

 

The course employees were a mixed bag. The only two I encountered that were any kind of cordial were the beverage cart attendant and the post-round cart assistant. Check in at the pro shop was professional at least, but less than welcoming. Of note, we were charged $7 more than what our club organizer quoted on our schedule. Pay attention to their rain check policy. They will give a rain-check, but not a refund. If  you play more than a couple of holes, the rain check will be pro-rated not the full fee. Bottom line, if you pay at the desk and start your round, they've got your money and aren't giving it back. We saw the course rangers a little more often than we saw the beverage cart, but neither was intrusive or interfered with play (i guess we were fast enough even at a little over 4 1/2 hrs for our foursome). The Pine Barrens course does not route back to the clubhouse at the turn so grab snacks if you need them when you see the bev cart. There is a small  bar and grill at the clubhouse. Given our date was an early summer Saturday with good weather, you'd assume they would expect to stay busy. Yet, the service was somewhat slow and confused, and again, a little less than cordial.

 

Overall impression, great courses that will challenge but not overtly punish, very fun to play. This was my second trip to WW with our group, and I've felt the same vibe both times. The facilities and the course are the draw, you are there to appreciate those, and the people who work there are not there to make you feel any kind of special for being there. Go into the experience with that in mind, and you'll have a great time on an enjoyable course.

  • Like 2

Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Week 6 - The Ritz Carlton Members Golf Club, Sarasota FL

Tees Played: White 6,198 Yards, 70.0/120; Blue 6,557 Yards 71.5/124

Conditions: Hot, humid, light breeze (gustier near finish)

Price: $$ ($65)

http://www.rcmcsarasota.com

 

The Ritz Carlton Members Golf Club is a private resort club in the Sarasota/Lakewood Ranch area south of Tampa with easy access from I-75. Ours was an organized tournament event, otherwise access if limited to members and guests of the RC Resort in Sarasota.

 

The Tom Fazio designed course was in immaculate condition tee to greens. Lush well manicured fairways were framed with deep but manageable rough. The numerous water hazards and bunkers create challenges and define strategy for each hole. It is a resort course, so the landing areas for the defined shots were fairly open.  It takes a fairly significant miss or overaggressive play to bring the hazards into play enough to really hurt your score. The greens were a bit slow early in the round, but as the temperature and breeze both went up, so did the speeds. There was also a fair amount of grain influence on the reads. Take your time reading putts. Several greens had deceptive slopes and angles that can give a false read if not considered from multiple angles. The greens held shots well and rolled true. Altogether the course was a pleasure to play. Enjoy the views and the strategy, take the shot that the course gives you, and it all makes for a beautiful and enjoyable golf experience.

 

The practice areas were outstanding as well. Adjacent to the clubhouse are an all grass, full swing range with numerous target greens, a medium size putting green, large chipping green, and a bunker practice green. All are supplied with quality practice balls, and the wedge areas included ball sweepers for clearing the greens. The conditions of all the practice and warm up areas were a close match for the course conditions. So if you are just having a practice session, or warming up before a round, the grounds are fantastic for working on any portion of your game.

 

The course employees were all very welcoming and friendly. The beverage cart on the course appeared with enough frequency we never had to think we'd never see it again, but it was never a hindrance either. Bag attendents are available to clean your clubs post round if you choose to unload at the cart return. Carts are equipped with GPS. There were occasional differences between the cart GPS and handheld, and rangefinders tended to favor something in the middle where they didn't match. There were no on-course rangers, but the cart system tracks your round timing, and the clubhouse may send a message encouraging pace of play. (Using tourney rules can occasionally drag our rounds out a bit). 

 

Overall impression, the Ritz Carlton Members club is a definite recommend if you can find or make the opportunity to play there. It is a resort course, so it is all designed to ensure you enjoy the golfing experience and want to go back. Mission accomplished. It's a fantastic course, with great aesthetics as well as offering a challenging, strategic, and fun round of golf. Ask about the free t-shirt if you manage par or better over the closing three, nicknamed the Lion's Den.


Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Week 7: Innsbrook Resort - Copperhead Course

Tees Played: Green 73.1/139, 6,624 yds; White 71.1/137 6,243 yds

Conditions: Warm to Hot, Still to light breeze

Price: $$$ ($89)

https://www.innisbrookgolfresort.com/golf/copperhead-course

 

The Innsbrook Golf Resort is a long standing favorite resort of both residents and visitors of the Tampa/St. Pete Area. The resort is about a 30 minute drive from the Tampa Airport and would be up to a 1 hour drive from most of the area beaches. The Copperhead Course hosts the PGA Tour's Valspar Championship during the spring Florida stretch leading into the masters. It is a challenging course with good variety in the shots demanded for the relatively flat property. The famous 'Snake Pit' holes 16-18 are the signature run, typically among the hardest finishing holes the Tour players face all season.

 

The course is always challenging, but the rating/slope truly tell you the story of Copperhead. If you manage to stay in play, and down the line of the fairway you stand a chance to score. Wander too far off the intended line, and the numerous trees, fairway bunkers, and some water will definitely run the stroke tally up for you. To help build your strategy, there is a downloadable yardage guide on the resort website, as well as an informative hole by hole guide from TrackTips on YouTube. The overall condition of the course will never be considered bad. Tees, greens, and fairways were all in very good condition for us. The rough had some issues on our day though. We  got some intel post round as to why. The course gets oversewed with rye prior to the PGA event (that's how they always get nice green stuff for TV). While the bermuda in the playing areas recovers quickly in the growing season, the shade and high traffic in the rough areas is slower to recover. With that, we had lots of patchy to bare areas in the rough to deal with. We also played a day after some significant rain, so we were lift and place in the fairways. 

Another note about the rough. The closer you play to the PGA week, the deeper the rough is going to be. It takes time for them to cut it back down to normal depth after the pros leave. Last season our group was a few weeks earlier, and several of us had to deal with 'lost' balls that were only a few paces from the green or fairway. If you are planning a visit to Copperhead, keep that in mind.

 

Practice Areas: While not expansive, the practice areas are more than adequate for a pre-round warm up. The large, mostly flat putting green is the closest to the first tee. The putting green was pretty close to the speed of the on-course greens, but does not have the contour or slope that you will face on the course. Practice balls are provided at the small to medium sized chipping green where you can practice short chips from fairway and rough. The chipping green is between the putting green and the full swing range. The full swing range is a decent walk from the first tee, and there is no cart access to the practice areas. The range has about 12 stations with balls provided, but as a busy resort course the quality of the turf may depend on your tee time. We were early, so there was still plenty of good grass at each station. Later in the day, expect lots of divots unless they move to the adjacent teeing area. There is another practice area down the street a bit used by the resort's golf school and guests that has a larger practice tee area but fewer short game areas to use. 

 

Course Employees: Everyone we encountered seemed happy to have us there, and sincere about making our visit enjoyable. You will most likely be met at your car by the bag attendants who will load your bag on a cart to transport it, and you if you are ready, to the starting area and they will already have your cart assignment for the round. The bag and cart attendants in the starting area are a great source of daily intel on how the course is set up and playing that day. Clubhouse staff was efficient and friendly. The on-course beverage carts were well stocked and made enough rounds you won't have to wonder for long when they will be by next. The clubhouse also houses one of the resort's restaurants with a buffet breakfast available if you arrive prior to an early tee time, and a limited but varied lunch menu. The wait staff was excellent, but expect to pay resort prices for food and beverages.

 

Overall Impression: Any of the Innsbrook Resort's courses will provide an enjoyable golf experience. Copperhead is the show-piece course, so the fees will be a bit higher to play it. The course conditions and challenges will show you why the PGA comes back year after year. You'll also get a perspective on how good those guys really are (the championship tees are not usually marked for public play, so you'll be looking back from your tees to get the feel for it). If you aren't a straight hitter, you can expect a challenging day for the scorecard, but the course itself will leave you smiling.I have visited and stayed at the resort for other events, and I definitely recommend including Copperhead if you are planning a multi-day trip. The resort is a great place to plan a weekend or longer golf vacation, with courses that are both fun and challenging, and a staff that are genuinely dedicated to ensuring you enjoy your visit.


Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Just a note, our league has a break for the next couple of weeks. Next review should appear July 1.


Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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League is back in action this week on Saturday 30 June at Southern Dunes in Haines City FL. I'll post my course review Sunday.


Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Nice - thanks - i

 

What's the league? Those are some great courses. It sounds like the one my friend plays in.

 

Also where do you live? I'm in Pinellas Park and have played most of those courses.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

  • Like 1

Ping G410 - set at 12 degrees, fade setting - Fujikura Motore X R flex

Ping G410 5-9 wood

G30 6-PW -  Aerotech FT 500 shafts

SCOR 48,52,56,60

EVNRoll ER 5

Titleist Pro VIx optic yellow with revkev stamped on them

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Nice - thanks - i

 

What's the league? Those are some great courses. It sounds like the one my friend plays in.

 

Also where do you live? I'm in Pinellas Park and have played most of those courses.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

League is called The Tampa Tour. I'm in the Riverview/Bloomingdale area of East Hillsborough Co.

  • Like 1

Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Week 8: Southern Dunes Golf and CC, Haines City FL

Tees Played: Blue - 6,803 yes, 73.3/134 ; White - 6,298 yes, 70.9/125

Price: $$ ($50 - Seasonal)

https://www.southerndunes.com

 

Southern Dunes is a semi-private golf club just outside of Orlando, in a gated community a few miles off of I-4 in Haines City. It sits approximately 45 minutes from the major Orlando resort areas, and was an hour to hour and 1/2 for most of us from the Tampa area. A distinct design for Florida with ample elevation changes, LOTS of bunkering and sand waste areas, and undulating greens. Be mindful of the seasonal rate schedule. Our summertime play date came in at $50 while the peak/cool weather season rate is significantly higher.

 

Everything about the course makes a tremendous first impression. From arrival at the entry gate it is a short drive through some neighborhoods to the clubhouse. While not large, the clubhouse is impressive, clean, and surrounded by the warmup and practice areas. The course itself was in immaculate condition. Seriously, think Tour level maintenance, tee to green: level, neatly mown tees; fairways firm enough to provide roll but good turf to play irons from (also really good drainage); and fast, true rolling greens. The rough was deep enough to know you were in rough, but it is not there to effect your score the way the bunkers and waste areas are. They are present on virtually every hole to define strategy and offer plenty of risk/reward shot opportunities for either the tee or approach shots. The green complexes were fairly large, with near-pristine apron/fringe areas. The mounding and undulation of the greens definitely makes finding the right area near the flag a plus, and the majority of green-side bunkers are deep and can really punish errant approach shots. We did encounter some moderate to heavy rain during the round, hence the note about the drainage. Most of the groups said they halted play for about 15-20 minutes during one downpour, and the course was immediately playable without much noticeable change in the conditions. The fairways and greens drained very quickly and continued to play very well. Be ready for that if you choose a summer date, especially in the second half of the day. Also noteworthy was the down-loadable yardage guide that gps links for use on the course, as well as cart-mounted gps that calculates distance to pin as well as green front/back.

 

Practice Areas: Sufficient not ample, but superb in condition is the best description I can offer. You do have to carry clubs to the full swing range. There is a small putting green, which matches the speed and conditions of the on-course greens. There is a practice bunker/chipping area as well. All first rate in condition and a good representation of the course for pre-round warmup, but it would quickly get crowded if you intend to strictly practice.

 

Course Employees: Very friendly and accommodating. Club attendant may greet you in the parking lot. They had our tee sheet so were able to load clubs on the appropriate, pre-positioned carts for each group. Checking in was quick, and the desk personnel were happy to answer questions from the 'never played here before' crowd. We only saw the on-course bev-cart twice during our round, but the bad weather may have influenced that. The course does route back to the clubhouse if you need to stock up mid-round. The bar/grille is adjacent to the clubhouse, with a good variety on the menu, reasonable prices, and quick friendly service. 

 

Overall Impression: A fantastic course with lots of character that will challenge players of all abilities. A definite recommendation if you want to get a taste of what the Tour players see with respect to the condition, speed and challenge of the greens. 


Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Week 9: Lake Jovita, North Course, Dade City FL

Tees Played: Blue: 6,863 yds, 73.1/136; White: 6,299 yds, 70.2/130

Conditions: Hot, Partly Cloudy, Very light breeze

Price: $ ($45)

https://lakejovita-hoa.com/tampa-golf-courses/

 

Lake Jovita is a 36-hole formerly private golf and tennis club associated with a medium sized gated community near Dade City, Florida. A 30-45 minute drive from Tampa, it is a bit isolated and out of the way for those coming from the coast cities or Orlando area. Both courses offer more rolling terrain than you'd expect from a course in this region which gives each track character and some different challenges that other nearby courses. The North Course has a good mix of openness, risk-reward, and shot-making with a couple of annoyingly designed holes as well.

 

This is a regular site for our group, and as far as the course conditions go, it was in general pretty good, but we've seen it much better. Tees, fairways, greens and rough were good and more than playable for the most part, but there were some spots more worse for wear that could affect play. There were at least three instances in my foursome where a player had to putt from/through bare or burned out spots on greens. Despite that the greens accepted shots well and rolled true with moderate speed.  A lot of the challenge of the course comes from the size and undulation of the greens, putting a premium on keeping the ball on the proper portion and below the hole on approaches. Several players complained about the condition of bunkers. I was in enough of them on the day to verify they were maddeningly inconsistent, including everything from wet/hardpacked sand with mud puddles, to clumps of grass and weeds, to sand so soft and deep it buried all but 1/2 the brand stamp and number on the ball.  

 

Practice Areas: The practice/warm-up facilities were ample but a mixed bag of conditions, but all require a short cart-drive or walk from the club-house. The full swing range has limited stations, and the turf was between well-worn and ragged for our pre-round time. There are multiple target flags to use though and it is deep enough for even the long hitters to swing away. The very large chipping/putting green sits between the starting tees and functions as the starter station for both courses. The practice green speed and roll is consistent with the on-course greens so it is a good gauge for pre-round prep.

 

Course Employees: In general, 'Meh'. Didn't feel like anyone went out of their way to make us feel either welcome or special nor did they make any effort toward the opposite. The gated main entrance still gives it the feel of a more private or exclusive facility which could be a turn-off for many of the general public. The word of the day was HOT,... no make that, STINKING HOT... which made it a real downer that I only recall seeing the beverage cart one time during our round as the course does not route back to the clubhouse at the turn.

 

Overall impression: Still a good value that gets a recommend if you want to make the trip. A fun and challenging course that can yield both low and high scores. The course conditions are still on the good side of the scale, but starting to show the facility has made the transition to full public from private/semi-private. 

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Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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Are there any links style courses in Florida I really want to get a taste of The Open but stateside for now.

 

Sent from my SM-G960U using MyGolfSpy mobile app


"Obviously my iron play is incredible, and when I get going I can get hot, but this course just fits my eye. The shaping of the holes, and just a couple of the doglegs, I'm able to shape shots."

 Bryson DeChambeau

 

In my  :ping-small: Hoofer Lite

 

:srixon-small: Z765 9.5 with Miyazaka Kaula Mizu 6 Stiff Shaft (TrueGolfFit Recommended!!!)

:cobra-small: F8 3-4 wood 16* Aldilla Blue 70 Stiff shaft

:taylormade-small: Rescue mid 2 iron 16*

:cobra-small: One Length Forged Tec 4-GW with AMT Black shafts

:cameron-small: Futura Phantom 2

:bridgestone-small:Tour B330 RX

 

Like Bass Fishing? Check out my one and only article!!!

https://www.bassresource.com/beginner/get-started-bass-fishing.html

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Great write-ups Greg, you did Pine Barrens, but what about the other course, Rolling Oaks?

 

 

Sent from my iPad using MyGolfSpy

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Driver: Tour Edge Exotics EXS w/Mitsubishi ck Blue regular shaft Fairways:  Cobra King F8 3W(14.5*) & 5W(18.5*) w/Mitsubishi ck Blue regular shaft Hybrids: Tour Edge CBX 119 4H(22*)  with Project X Evenflo regular shaft Irons: Wilson Staff D7 5 - PW w/Recoil 460 regular shafts Wedges: Wilson D7 GW(48*) & SW(54*) Cobra King F8 LW(58*)all wedges have Recoil 460 regular shafts Putter: 33" Bellum-Winmore 707 putter Bag: Cobra Ultralite Cart Bag(Peacoat Blue).

 

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League is called The Tampa Tour. I'm in the Riverview/Bloomingdale area of East Hillsborough Co.

We have to play!

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy


Ping G410 - set at 12 degrees, fade setting - Fujikura Motore X R flex

Ping G410 5-9 wood

G30 6-PW -  Aerotech FT 500 shafts

SCOR 48,52,56,60

EVNRoll ER 5

Titleist Pro VIx optic yellow with revkev stamped on them

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Are there any links style courses in Florida I really want to get a taste of The Open but stateside for now.

 

Sent from my SM-G960U using MyGolfSpy mobile app

World Woods Pine Barrens, the New Course at Grand Cypress and Southern Dunes just reviewed above come to mind.

 

Of course none are true links - it would be impossible to have a “links” course in Florida - our turf and weather conditions make it impossible to have courses that look like what we saw last weekend. Dry and firm is not what Florida is about.

 

But the New Course is a replica of St Andrews. It's cool.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

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Ping G410 - set at 12 degrees, fade setting - Fujikura Motore X R flex

Ping G410 5-9 wood

G30 6-PW -  Aerotech FT 500 shafts

SCOR 48,52,56,60

EVNRoll ER 5

Titleist Pro VIx optic yellow with revkev stamped on them

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Great write-ups Greg, you did Pine Barrens, but what about the other course, Rolling Oaks?

 

 

Sent from my iPad using MyGolfSpy

The league only did one stop at World Woods this year. Last season was my first in the group and I missed the Rolling Oaks play date. 

Next up is the Islands Course at Innisbrook. That one should be 'fun'.  :huh:

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Driver:  PXG 811x Gen1, HZRDS Smoke Yellow 60g S

Fariway:   :titelist-small: 917 F2, 3-Wood Fujikura Blue 

Hybrid:   :ping-small: G410 18*

Irons:  :titelist-small: T300 4-5, T200 6-PW Nippon 880 Pro R

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:  CBX2 50*, 54*, 58*, TT Dynamic Gold Wedge Flex

Putter:  :odyssey-small:  EXO Rossie 34.5" (Tester) 

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