We left Mallacoota today for Lakes Entrance. About lunch time we got to Orbost which is a nice little town on the Snowy River in what was once timber country. After lunch I thought I might have a look at the Orbost golf club which is not far from town. Strangely my sat nav said to go the wrong way when the course was in sight.
The driveway leads to a modern club house at the top of a hill. There was only one car in the car park. My first check was to look at the condition of the practice green and a couple of the other greens near the club house. They were a bit slow bit in good nick. The surrounds looked good as well so off I went for a quick nine.
The first is a straight par 5 of 438m. The best line is up the left but there are some trees which intrude. The green is just over the crest of a hill with a large shallow bunker in the front. My ball actually ran through the bunker onto the green.
The second is an unusual downhill par 3 of 143m. Bunkers short right and back left don't really intrude but some short trees obscure the view of the green. There is quite a slope on the left side of the green and some interesting contours. Nice hole.
The third is a par 4 of 354m. A bit like the first it is quite narrow off the tee but then opens out near the featureless green.
The fourth turns back toward the club house. It is a par 4 of 358m which turns to the right. The fairway is wide with OOB on the right as a deterrent against cutting the corner. Bigger hitters might want to play less than a full drive. Again the green is featureless.
The fifth returns to the clubhouse. It is a longish par four of 403m. The fairway is wide and the green is unprotected.
The sixth is another longish par 4. This time 390m. It has a short dog leg to the right. You either need to play a short shot off the tee or hit over a large cypress tree on the corner. From there the green is unprotected other than by some shallow slopes.
The seventh is a par 5 of 465m. The fairway is generous and there was enough run for even a modest hitter like me to get close to the green for two. There is enough interest in the green to make this the best hole so far.
Eight is a par 3 of 137m to a smallish green protected by bunkers and slopes. Again there is enough interest in the green to make this good hole.
The nine finishes with an uphill par 4 of 305m. There is OOB to the right but it is not really in play. The small green presents a challenging target for the second shot and is a good match for the length of the hole.
I didn't mention the condition of the fairways. They were pretty poor with mostly thin grass or weeds. I played preferred lies but I don't know what happens in members comps. The saving grace is that the greens and surrounds are well grassed.
I'm a fan of small country courses but I've got to say that Orbost is pretty plain fare. Perhaps there were some good holes on the back nine that I missed. To their credit I think they are managing what they've got pretty well. The drought is doing them no favours at all.