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Alrighty fellow spies, it's time to gear up for the summer league season. With that in mind, I decided to spin up a new thread for the upcoming season. I play in a casual/competitive league, based in the Tampa area, that branches out to nearby areas for a 14 event season with a Ryder Cup style team event to wrap up the season.

What to expect. I approach these reviews as a look at the total golf experience, not just the course and how it plays. For my format, I lead in with the name of the course, where it is, a link to the applicable course website, which tees were played, and how much it costs. You can see some examples in the previous seasons' version of this thread (Florida League Course Reviews) or in my Tampa Area Course Reviews thread.

My price scale is from 1 to 4 dollar signs. $ <50, $$ 50-75, $$$ 75-95, $$$$ >95. The league tries to find the best courses at the best value so that has an influence on the price scale.

My review areas include: Course Description, Course Conditions, Practice Facilities, and Course Employees. At the end of each review I'll include an overall summary of the golf experience and an overall recommendation.

 ⛳ = Don't Bother, ⛳⛳ = Do Not Recommend, ⛳⛳⛳ = Recommend, ⛳⛳⛳⛳ = Definite Recommend, ⛳⛳⛳⛳⛳ = Don't Miss It

With all of that to set the stage, here is this season's course lineup

  1. Mission Inn Resort - El Campeon, Howey In the Hills, FL
  2. Southern Hills Plantation, Brooksville FL
  3. Old Corkscrew, Estero FL
  4. Orange County National - Panther Lake, Orlando FL
  5. Bella Collina, Orlando FL
  6. Juliette Falls, Dunellon FL
  7. Lake Jovita - North, Dade City FL
  8. Candler Hills CC, Ocala FL
  9. Eaglebrooke, Lakeland FL
  10. Lake Jovita - South, Dade City FL
  11. Innisbrook Resort - Copperhead, Palm Harbor FL
  12. Streamsong Resort - Red/Blue (2-day event), Bowling Green FL
  13. TPC Tampa Bay, Tampa FL
  14. Esplanade at Azario, Lakewood Ranch FL
  15. League Invitational: Ritz Carlton Members Club, Bradenton FL
  16. Team Cup Event: Black Diamond Golf Club - Ranch/Quarry, Lecanto FL

Keep in mind, I may not be able to play in every event of the season, but I do my best. The events I do play, I try to have the course review completed before the end of that weekend. If you are familiar at all with any of those venues, you can see it is a pretty good lineup to begin with. To those who have followed the previous course review threads, thanks for reading. I'm looking forward to another good season, and providing some good info for anyone looking to play in the area.

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Driver:  PXG 211 Project X Evenflow CB, 50g 5.5

Fariway:  PXG 211, 3-Wood Project X Evenflow CB, 60g 5.5

Hybrid:   PXG 211, 3H Project X Evenflow H, 80g, 5.5

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:  Stroke Lab Rossie

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Looking forward to reviews especially Juillette Falls.


Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

  • Like 2

Rick

 

 

Left Hand, 

Driver; Titleist TSi2, Kuro Kage 50 gr R2

5 Wood; Cally Steelhead 

5 Hybrid; Cally Steelhead, Hazardous Vista Pro R2

Irons; Ping G710 6-GW, Recoil 460 R2

Putter; Waaay too many to list

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  • 4 weeks later...

2021 Event #1- Mission Inn Resort: El Campeon (March 2021)

Tees Played:    Historic (White)  6,242 / 71.1  / 135

Conditions: Warm to hot; light breeze

Price: $$ ($55) 

https://missioninnresort.com/golf/el-campeon/ 

Mission Inn is an established golf resort in Howey in the Hills Florida, near Leesburg and Lake Harris northwest of Orlando. Drive time from the Tampa area is about two hours, slightly less from the Orlando resort areas. With two championship courses, the resort has plenty to offer for golfers and non-golfers alike. The El Campeon course is a challenging shot makers course with a mix of narrow tree-lined fairways, changing elevation, bunkers and water features that make strategy and course management just as important as shot quality. Large, undulating greens require good shot placement and quality putting once you reach them. While not exceptionally long from the middle tees, El Campeon has a lot of bite to it if you stray too far from the intended line of the hole.

ElCamp1.JPG.62021146565cbe1a48b61e30d800aa8a.JPGElCamp13.JPG.b84d48c6ad1c446acc7b9ec00712e7ec.JPG

Course Conditions:  In general not too shabby but maybe falling a bit short of expectations for a golf resort facility. Some of the tee areas were either severely worn, uneven or both. Fairways had a few thin spots, but for the most part were good to very good. Fairway roll was sufficient with the springtime conditions, but expect conditions to be much softer later in the summer rainy season. Like most resorts, rough was deep enough to notice but typically not enough to have a huge impact on shots. Bunkers were consistent but played more like loose dirt that sand (no rakes - thanks Covid) so watch out for thin shots from them. The greens on our play date were VERY slow, and caused a lot of players in our league group to struggle. Of interest though a few of our players went for a mid-week preview round and claimed the greens were fast enough to suggest a 5-putt limit for the league round. So I guess timing matters. There is a lot of undulation on the greens, so if they are rolling fast they will be very demanding. Rolling like they were for us, they were smooth but frustratingly slow.

Practice Facilities:  Both courses share the same clubhouse area, and the resort also offers a golf school so the practice areas are more than ample. The short game green and full swing range are a short walk or cart ride across the parking lot. The turf is good and there is plenty of room but the range doesn't have many clearly designated targets. It is also a two way range with the golf school using the far end. The large putting green has fewer holes than you might expect so even though it's big it can feel cramped if a lot of players are using it. Of particular note the practice green rolled significantly faster than the on-course greens for us, so be wary. 

Course Employees:  Everyone in the clubhouse area was friendly and engaging. The cart barn attendants had some good tips on the course, and the pro shop check in was quick and easy. Once you get past the starter the only on-course presence is the bar cart which came around frequently enough to not be missed or wanted. 

Overall Impression:  Considering this is a golf resort facility allowing public play, the price tag of $55 on a weekend feels like a pretty good deal. The course was in decent to good condition and was fun to play. Pace of play can be called a down-side to El Campeon. My B-flight 3 player group needed a smidgen over 5 hours to finish using tournament rules (no gimmes/friendly drops). The only other negative for Mission Inn is location. It's very isolated, so if you're not staying at the resort there's not a whole lot nearby as far as things to do or see, and unless you live in one of the nearby communities a round at Mission Inn is going to be an all day affair. In general though I'd call it worth the effort.

Rating: ⛳⛳⛳ - Recommend

  • Like 3

Driver:  PXG 211 Project X Evenflow CB, 50g 5.5

Fariway:  PXG 211, 3-Wood Project X Evenflow CB, 60g 5.5

Hybrid:   PXG 211, 3H Project X Evenflow H, 80g, 5.5

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:  Stroke Lab Rossie

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That's quite the course line up. 🙂

  • Like 1

Ping G410 - turned down to11.25 degrees, neutral setting - Fujikura Motore X R flex

Ping G410 5-9 wood

Wilson D7 forged 6-GW -  Mamiya recoil 460 R flex

SCOR 52,60

EVNRoll ER 5

Titleist Pro VIx optic yellow with revkev stamped on them

Currently testing Edison wedges to replace SCORS that are wearing out. Also auditions for the 14th spot in the bag.  Current possibilities are a Ping 26 degree hybrid - duplicates the 9 wood or 5 iron but would be used almost exclusively for chipping or Tour Exotics 3 wood simply because you can carry 14 clubs and I might occasionally hit it in certain unusual wind conditions once every four or five rounds. 

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On 3/2/2021 at 5:48 PM, GregB135 said:

Alrighty fellow spies, it's time to gear up for the summer league season. With that in mind, I decided to spin up a new thread for the upcoming season. I play in a casual/competitive league, based in the Tampa area, that branches out to nearby areas for a 14 event season with a Ryder Cup style team event to wrap up the season.

What to expect. I approach these reviews as a look at the total golf experience, not just the course and how it plays. For my format, I lead in with the name of the course, where it is, a link to the applicable course website, which tees were played, and how much it costs. You can see some examples in the previous seasons' version of this thread (Florida League Course Reviews) or in my Tampa Area Course Reviews thread.

My price scale is from 1 to 4 dollar signs. $ <50, $$ 50-75, $$$ 75-95, $$$$ >95. The league tries to find the best courses at the best value so that has an influence on the price scale.

My review areas include: Course Description, Course Conditions, Practice Facilities, and Course Employees. At the end of each review I'll include an overall summary of the golf experience and an overall recommendation.

 ⛳ = Don't Bother, ⛳⛳ = Do Not Recommend, ⛳⛳⛳ = Recommend, ⛳⛳⛳⛳ = Definite Recommend, ⛳⛳⛳⛳⛳ = Don't Miss It

With all of that to set the stage, here is this season's course lineup

  1. Mission Inn Resort - El Campeon, Howey In the Hills, FL
  2. Southern Hills Plantation, Brooksville FL
  3. Old Corkscrew, Estero FL
  4. Orange County National - Panther Lake, Orlando FL
  5. Bella Collina, Orlando FL
  6. Juliette Falls, Dunellon FL
  7. Lake Jovita - North, Dade City FL
  8. Candler Hills CC, Ocala FL
  9. Eaglebrooke, Lakeland FL
  10. Lake Jovita - South, Dade City FL
  11. Innisbrook Resort - Copperhead, Palm Harbor FL
  12. Streamsong Resort - Red/Blue (2-day event), Bowling Green FL
  13. TPC Tampa Bay, Tampa FL
  14. Esplanade at Azario, Lakewood Ranch FL
  15. League Invitational: Ritz Carlton Members Club, Bradenton FL
  16. Team Cup Event: Black Diamond Golf Club - Ranch/Quarry, Lecanto FL

Keep in mind, I may not be able to play in every event of the season, but I do my best. The events I do play, I try to have the course review completed before the end of that weekend. If you are familiar at all with any of those venues, you can see it is a pretty good lineup to begin with. To those who have followed the previous course review threads, thanks for reading. I'm looking forward to another good season, and providing some good info for anyone looking to play in the area.

Love the rating  system and of course the write=ups. 

  • Like 1

Left Hand orientation

:ping-small: G410 SFT driver 

Cobra King F-9  5 wood
:ping-small:  410  Hybrids 22*, 26*

Cobra Speed Zone 6-GP/Recoil ESX 460 F3 Shafts 

:titelist-small: SM7 54* Wedge

:ping-small: Glide 3.0  60* Wedge

:odyssey-small: O Works putter
:918457628_PrecisionPro:NX9-HD

:CaddyTek: - 4 Wheel 
:footjoy-small: - too many shoes to list and so many to buy

:1590477705_SunMountain: And  BAG Boy

Golf Balls: Snell MTB-X 

2020 Official Tester :SuperSpeed: Beginning Driver Speed  - 78

2019 Official Tester :ping-small:  410 Driver

2018 Official Tester :wilson-small: C300

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2021 Event #2- Southern Hills Plantation Club, Brooksville FL (Previously Reviewed) April 2021

Tees Played: Blue:  6,455 / 71.1  / 135

Conditions: Warm and breezy

Price: $$$$ ($189) Tournament Group Rate was discounted

https://www.southernhillsplantationclub.com/golf

Rating: ⛳⛳⛳ - Recommend

The Southern Hills Plantation Club golf course is a favorite of many of our league players, even though it tends to kick our teeth in when we play it. It is a Pete Dye designed championship course just a little off the beaten path in Brooksville, Florida roughly an hour drive north from the Tampa Bay area. "SoHilly" deserves that nickname, as there are lots of elevation changes and sloping fairways with a fascinating mix of bunkers, trees, and water to both please the eye and challenge the skills. With all the terrain factored in, once you're off the tee there is hardly a level lie in sight. Then, there are the Pete Dye greens. If you've read the previous review, you know the phrase of the day is "screw you Pete Dye!". Take your time and read the entire green complex, look at the natural downhill direction, and look at it from the other side. Even then, Mr. Dye's greens will have you losing your faith in physics, and swearing up-and-down your putt just broke uphill.

 

Course Conditions:  As is typical for So Hilly, the course was in terrific shape all around. With the exception of a few worn tee areas the turf tee to green is outstanding. Plenty of roll and play in the fairways. On our play date this year the greens were rolling very smooth and moderately fast. For So Hilly, moderately fast is a bit slow. When the greens are freshly cut and rolled they play extremely fast. The only knock on the conditions this time around was the greens playing firm. Just as in the past, shots will need a LOT of spin to stop, so partial wedges and chip shots tended to roll out a long way. The rough was well maintained and manageable to play from, just be aware, if you are in the rough you probably also have a sloping lie (SYPD!). Bunkers are everywhere, so it's good that they are well maintained and playable as well (no rakes C-19). All in all the course conditions here are never cause to complain.

Practice Areas:  Altogether very nice practice areas. The full swing range has good to very good turf and good targets. The bulk of the area though is reserved for member use. Our tournament group used the public area which room for maybe 8 stations making it was crowded prior to competition play. Playing as a simple foursome the space is more than sufficient. The putting green is fairly large but needs another target cup or two to not feel crowded. Smooth and fast like the course, but lacks any flat area for really practicing. The chipping green also replicates the on-course greens very well. Besides the warm-up/practice areas there is a short game course on site that looks like a lot of fun.

shilly1.JPG.29419f62ebda937966944c48625e1db7.JPG

Course Employees: I have to say, this time, I was a bit surprised. The people at the clubhouse check-in counter seemed no better than indifferent that we were there. We saw a ranger roll by, but he didn't say anything to our group (even though we could have been put on the clock). The bar cart rolled through a couple of times as well but I didn't interact. No one seemed to be going out of their way to take care of anyone though. Only the parking lot greet/cart crew and the bar attendants were pleasant to deal with. So a mark down this time on the overall experience.

Overall Impression: I'll be honest, I'm torn here. The golf course on it's own if fantastic, always in great shape, and is fun to play. But right now, part of me wants to say, "If you're going to charge the public $150+ to play your golf course, you should probably at least try to be nice to them while they're there. A price tag that high, to me says "Resort property", and while the course conditions might live up to that, the people factor this time didn't match. If you can get a bargain on the rate, and I don't know if the rate will be lower in the summer months, then it is absolutely worth it. For now though, Southern Hills only gets a recommend.

Rating: ⛳⛳⛳ - Recommend and at least 1 🤬 Pete Dye!

shilly2.jpg.5785997f73ec1e5d0d3db79548876dcb.jpg    shilly3.jpg.cc6d0c0618ddd1c2232609a96148b45e.jpg

Driver:  PXG 211 Project X Evenflow CB, 50g 5.5

Fariway:  PXG 211, 3-Wood Project X Evenflow CB, 60g 5.5

Hybrid:   PXG 211, 3H Project X Evenflow H, 80g, 5.5

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:  Stroke Lab Rossie

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