Decided to make the 40 minute trip to play Broadford golf course today for the first time.
I didn't have that high of an expectation of the course, and only played there today because I had the license to play anywhere today from the missus. Comp at Yarrambat was full, so what a perfect excuse to see the countryside.
The course I feel favors naturally longer hitters, and those that can work the ball both ways. There are a couple of holes that I felt were maybe a little bit too long for most golfers. The 1st is a 525meter par 5, 17th is a 225meter par 3 and I have a slight pet peeve when courses start with par 5's, let alone super long ones. There is a good balance of long and short holes though, with a couple of driver wedge holes throughout the round and I even found myself using my 5wd and hybrids off the tees to ensure good position for the approach shots.
The greens were in ok condition for a country course. There are some that do need a little bit of love and a couple of dead areas of certain greens did cost me through the round. Overall though, very acceptable quality greens, with minimal to no pitchmark damage signs that are far more common in the urban courses closer to the CBD. I felt the size and overall design of the greens were well thought out, and they were responsive enough yet firm enough to make you have to hit good approaches in and high quality shots were well rewarded. For the most part, they rolled true and fair, with an utmost importance placed on trusting your read and committing to the line picked out.
The course seemed well protected from the wind by the trees lining the fairways, but in saying that there wasn't a massive over-abundance of trees to the point where missing the fairway meant the next shot was completely unplayable. The fairways were in great condition for a country course, and the undulation on some holes provided carefully thought out shot shapes based on the angle of your lie. There were dog legs both left and right throughout the course and it was often better to aim for the widest part of the fairway rather than just crushing it off the tee.
There were a couple of things that could certainly be improved with a little bit of effort, and no staff member on manning the bar or cafe was a little disappointing. The only thing fitting to complete a great day of golf would have been the ability to have a pie at the halfway mark and a cold one after the round. The practice facilities need improving, especially for those that travel a good distance to the course needing to warm up before the round.
Well thought out course design
Good condition fairways
Mostly good condition greens
Very little population on the course for a Sunday, walk on and never be held up by another group
Nice views and an abundance of wildlife
Very cheap, only $20 to play on a Sunday
Challenging yet highly rewarding for pure golf shots
Starting with a long par 5
Some greens had dead zones
No one staffing the course
Very little warm up facilities and what was there wasn't in good condition.
Overall a very very fun course to play, and one that I will play more in the future. It places a premium on mid and long iron shot making throughout the course, offers risk vs reward decision making both off the tees as well as approach shots and in my humble opinion, is very much a hidden gem and well worth the trip. I can't wait to play it again in summer, where the sheer length of some holes will be a little less intimidating with some fairway run on offer.