Forest Dunes Golf Club

4.6914058824 4.7 stars from 5 (86)
  • Holes: 18
  • Par: 72
  • Length: 7116 yards
  • Slope: 146
  • Rating: 75.2
  • Layout

Rentals/Services

Carts: Yes - included in green fees
Clubs: Yes
Caddies: No

Practice/Instruction

Driving range: Yes
Pitching/chipping area: Yes
Putting green: Yes
Practice bunker: Yes
Teaching pro: Yes
Golf school / academy: Yes - "Kendall/Seltzer Golf Getaway School"

Policies

Metal spikes allowed: No
Dress code: Proper Golf Attire Required. Shirt And Shoes Required
Credit cards accepted: Visa, Mastercard, American Express

Tees | Layout | Full Scorecard

Tee Par Length Rating Slope
I 72 7116 yards 75.2 146
II 72 6550 yards 72.4 139
Combo II & III 72 6309 yards 71.3 135
III (W) 72 5888 yards 74.8 143
III 72 5888 yards 69.2 127
IV 72 4993 yards 69.9 136

Accolades

Rating Snapshot

GA Rating Index 4.7 stars from 5
Off-Course Amenities: 4.5 stars from 5
Value: 4.2 stars from 5
Pace of Play: 3.9 stars from 5
Staff Friendliness: 4.8 stars from 5
Course Layout: 4.8 stars from 5
Course Conditions: 4.6 stars from 5
Rating Breakdown 86 Reviews
5 stars:
73
4 stars:
6
3 stars:
5
2 stars:
2
1 stars:
0

recommend this course

79 out of 85 reviews


What Golfers Are Saying

Location is worth the drive   Great for a bucket list/top 100 pick advanced golfers wildlife/ scenic views   Challenges include bunkers undulating greens water hazards   Great for drinks patio dining brunch  

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Reviewer Photos

Reviews


Overall Rating
Recommended
Handicap
Age
Type of Golfer
Gender

Bill5995686's avatar
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Few times a week

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 07/21/2017
First time playing Verified Purchaser

Reviewed on

Excellent golf course met Elliott head pro on 17 tee box and chatted with super individual as was every other staff member friendly and welcoming will be back and junior friendly


Pace of Play: Average

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Excellent

Off-Course Amenities: Good


I recommend this course


"Worth the drive"


RavensGolfer's avatar
Top 250 Contributor
Age:  55-64
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Few times a week
Handicap:  15-19

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 07/18/2017
First time playing Used cart Perfect weather

Reviewed on

Forest Dunes had been on my bucket list for years. The course is strong but not extremely difficult. Nice variety to the holes. The opening hole is a classic, starting with a tee shot that makes you decide just how confident in your swing you are. Wasn't fond of the par 4 13th, though maybe its just one of those holes you have to play a few times to figure out. Greens were smooth and had good speed.

Staff is outstanding. Lodge is a great place to stay and highly recommend the restaurant for breakfast (our two dinners there were just average and a little overpriced).

So the downside was the pace of play. We were told multiple times that 4:30 was the expected pace of play and was usually less than that. After 2 hours and 7 holes, ranger Bill took pity on us (again great staff!) and arranged for us to play thru 3 foursomes in the next few holes. Another group waved us through and we finished in about 4 hours. We then had dinner while we watched the next five groups finish in 5:10-5:20.

Would certainly recommend playing if in Northern Michigan.


Pace of Play: Poor

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Excellent

Off-Course Amenities: Good

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I recommend this course


"Unbelievable...!"


BirdieBoy1962's avatar
Age:  55-64
Gender:  Male
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Few times a week
Handicap:  10-14

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 07/07/2017
Previously played Walked Perfect weather

Reviewed on

Run, don't walk to Forest Dunes. Unbelievable maintenance, lay our, amenities, staff, housing, food, etc. No surprise that this course in on all of the lists.


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Excellent

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I recommend this course


"A little disappointing"


u00000760482's avatar
Age:  55-64
Skill:  Advanced
Plays:  Few times a week
Handicap:  0-4

3 3.0 stars from 5 Played on 06/11/2017
First time playing Used cart Perfect weather

Reviewed on

Getting a chance to play a Top 25-in-the-country ranked public golf course was a thrilling proposition for me. I am sorry to report that I was more than a little disappointed with the experience, though. I expected more for the price that I paid. There was no course map on the scorecard, nor GPS available to help the first timer know where to hit and what to avoid. Access to water on the course was extremely limited. The staff was fine starting with check-in to a pleasant and helpful starter. The practice facility was very nice. The course (and its condition) was acceptable, but not quite the quality (greens, in particular) that I expected for this highly ranked of a course. The "bet settling" par 3 - 19th hole was a unique feature, I will admit. I would recommend this course to anyone who hasn't played it, but for this reviewer, once is enough.


Pace of Play: Good

Course Layout: Good

Course Conditions: Average

Staff Friendliness: Good

Value for the Money: Fair

Off-Course Amenities: Average

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I recommend this course



landisw's avatar
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Few times a week

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 06/06/2017
Previously played Used cart Windy weather Verified Purchaser

Reviewed on


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Excellent

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I recommend this course


"Great course, better experience"


sorenj's avatar
Top 250 Contributor
Idaho Advisor
Age:  45-54
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Once a month
Handicap:  10-14

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 05/25/2017
First time playing Walked Wet weather

Reviewed on

Forest Dunes is Golf Digests number 25 public course (and has been ranked in the top 100 since 2007). The course certainly deserves the ranking and the round I had there was great (Note I said “the round,” not “my play”… that’s an important distinction); however, the golf is not what I will remember the most. The best part, hands down, of my visit to Roscommon was the service and attention we received from the staff. This is difference-making, plan-you-trip-around-it level service.

One quick example: we are on a long (golf) road trip (50 rounds in 50 states in 50 days) and had commented (online) about the logistical issues related to planning “laundry days” during the trip. Noticing this and without being asked, the staff at Forest Dunes made arrangements for us to be able to do laundry while staying on property. It’s simple, but it’s little “attention to detail” things like this that bring you back to a destination spot. This was just one of several times when the observant and pro-active staff exceeded not just our expectations; but any imaginary notions of service we might have entertained. Everyone we met at Forest Dunes was enthusiastically engaging.

And then there was the golf. I’d say I played 18 holes of great golf, but that would imply two things that are incorrect 1) that I had played well and 2) that I had played 18 holes. Forest Dunes has a “bye” (or bonus) 19th hole; a short par 3 over water playing about 97 yards on average to a green with a bunker in the dead center of it. It’s just another example of the course going the extra mile (or in this case the extra 20th of one).

The course layout is terrific with essentially two different looks. The front nine is forested and light on waste areas and bunkers while the back is links’ish with a much more open look and vast amounts of waste. Holes 12 and 14 on the back play and look a little more like the front but for the most part the looks are consistent, front and back.

As I was a bit errant with my tee shots today, I was pleased to find that many of the waste areas are easily played out of. I also benefitted from playing in the spring when the grasses hadn’t fully come in yet; there was at least one ball I was able to play that my partner said would have been unplayable later in the year. There is only water on 5 holes (6 if you count #19) but it is very much in play on each of the holes that has it.

The course does not have a great deal of elevation change, however they use a variety of design elements to keep the track both challenging and interesting. One of the things I particularly liked was the lack of penalty for a “pretty good” shot (many courses tend to tilt their fairways, for example, so that only very good shots leave a player on even footing with the ball, I tend to view this as “too much”). Forest Dunes will certainly bite you for making a bad shot, but the less than perfect nature of a “decent shot” is not unnecessarily compounded.

There are also a couple holes which are set up to force the player to make a decision on how to attack the green. I’ve played lots of courses with split greens of one fashion or another, but few of them are as demanding when it comes to thinking through your approach. The aptly named “Gamble” 6th hole is a great example of this. With a shorter more direct route - which requires a 200 yard carry over a fairway wide bunker - to the green on the right and a longer, but much safer off the tee, path to the left; the player can choose their level of risk/reward tolerance.

Other features are the drivable par 4 17th (I hit a 189 yard 6 iron from the “II” tees to about 75 yards) and another spilt fairway choice (shorter and narrower vs. longer and wider) on a #10 hole bearing the moniker “Decision.” The course is also easily walked which, for me, really enhances the round.

Forest Dunes is a great course and an even better experience. My wife and I have already discussed returning for a two (or three) day stay in order to play the new Loop course (a completely reversible course that switches direction every other day) and get in another round at the Dunes. We will almost certainly be back and can’t recommend making the trip out to play this track strongly enough.


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I recommend this course



"starting late"



5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 09/14/2016
First time playing Used cart Played 18 holes Excellent weather Verified Purchaser

Reviewed on

We took the last tee time available and because of the slow play we had to quit after fifteen holes because of darkness. Loved the course and want to go back at earlier tee time and have dinner there.


Pace of Play: Fair

Course Layout: Good

Course Conditions: Good

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Good

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I recommend this course


"Bucket List Golf"


bushjoe1's avatar
Skill:  Advanced
Plays:  Once a week
Handicap:  0-4

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 07/04/2016
Previously played Walked Played 18 holes Excellent weather Verified Purchaser

Reviewed on

I play here every year. The place is perfect. Don't change a thing.


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Good

Value for the Money: Excellent

Off-Course Amenities: Good

Course Difficulty:  Extremely Challenging


I recommend this course


"Best Public Track in Michigan"


smith851's avatar
Age:  25-34
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Once a week
Handicap:  0-4

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 06/11/2016
Previously played Walked Hot weather

Reviewed on

Forest Dunes is IMO the best public course in MI. The layout is a very manageable and enjoyable walk . The variety of holes make the round very memorable. The front nine plays through the woods massaging players to shape the ball both ways off the tee, the memorable par 4 5th is a great "choose your route" hole that makes it very playable. The back nine then routes out into dunes style terrain. the driveable par 4 (#17, a Weiskopf Design Staple) is a great risk reward hole which can help your scorecard prior to the lengthy par 5 18th. the Bye Hole is a wonderful final 19th hole, designed to help settle four-some bets that is a great way to end the round. The entire facility (lodging, clubhouse, practice) is *****. DO NOT MISS THIS PLACE ON YOU NORTHERN MICHIGAN GOLF TRIPS


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Good

Off-Course Amenities: Good

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I recommend this course


"This greens were awesome"


jonmcc10's avatar
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Twice a year

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 06/07/2016
Previously played Verified Purchaser

Reviewed on

Can't say much bad about a course so far north and they do not use the rough winter as an excuse for the greens. I am hoping the price come down when the loop opens so I can play it annually. Got a good deal on golf now so I am happy. Enjoyed the range prior to round. Good Experiance.


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Good

Value for the Money: Good

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent


I recommend this course


"Great course. Bugs were kind of a nuisance"


sether79's avatar
Skill:  Advanced
Plays:  Few times a week

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 05/28/2016
First time playing Verified Purchaser

Reviewed on

Awesome course with a great staff. Practice facility is something out of tour stop. Depending on the time of year you better have bug spray cause you will need it.


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Good

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent


I recommend this course


"This course is a bucket list course"


scottyd4201's avatar
Age:  35-44
Gender:  Male
Skill:  Advanced
Plays:  Few times a week
Handicap:  0-4

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 05/28/2016
First time playing

Reviewed on

Great practice facility, staff are amazing and all around a great course for all skill levels. Greens are fast and true. The only negative thing i would say about this course is bugs... Tons of bugs. Bring your bug spray and you'll be good. Definitely will come back again


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Excellent

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent


I recommend this course


"one of the best in the state"


pdjohns's avatar
Handicap:  10-14

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 05/23/2016
First time playing Used cart Played 18 holes Excellent weather Verified Purchaser

Reviewed on

Great playable layout! In great shape for this time of year. Enjoyed the range/practice area. Friendly, welcoming staff. Played on a Monday afternoon- great pace of play. I could sit outside the clubhouse for hours after finishing that 19th hole. This certainly will become a great destination golf resort with the completion of "the loop" and future projects. Bugs were an issue but did not bite, just annoying at times. Looking forward to returning.


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Excellent

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I recommend this course


"Nuff Said"


Benzdorka's avatar
Age:  25-34
Gender:  Male
Skill:  Advanced
Plays:  Few times a week

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 05/20/2016
First time playing

Reviewed on

A review of Forest Dunes is superfluous at this point, but just to pile some gravy on the rave reviews.

A must play course in Michigan. Top notch practice facilities, friendly and knowledgeable staff, a beverage/snack cart seemingly on every hole, true greens and a layout that is very aesthetically pleasing. There is not a blade of grass or grain of sand on this course that has not been mulled over and maintained impeccably.

Highly recommend and will be back next year


Pace of Play: Good

Course Layout: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Good

Value for the Money: Good

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent


I recommend this course


"Not Worth The Money"


thomasted's avatar
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Once a week
Handicap:  10-14

3 3.0 stars from 5 Played on 10/07/2015
Previously played Played with a group Used cart Played 18 holes Good weather Verified Purchaser

Reviewed on

I know aerating is necessary but charging that much when the greens and fairways were aerated is a rip off


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Conditions: Poor

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Poor

Quality of food & beverage: Fair

Off-Course Amenities: Good

Course Difficulty:  Extremely Challenging


I recommend this course


"1st Class All Around"


Wrobo1501's avatar
Gender:  Male
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Few times a week
Handicap:  5-9

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 09/12/2015
First time playing Played with a group Used cart Played 18 holes Good weather

Reviewed on

Hosted a Ryder cup style event. 4 rounds over 2 days.<br/> Nothing about our trip to Forest Dunes disappointed. Course conditions were just as advertised. Greens were lightning fast. Couple of green structures were a bit ridiculous (#5 & #15) for par 5s but overall they were very fun to putt on. Course was actually a little more open off tee than I thought which was nice. Some very cool strategic holes (#6, #8, #10 & #12). Loved 3 finishing holes - strong par 3, drive-able par 4 then reachable par 5 with water left in play.

Most impressive thing about trip was the service of all the staff - treated group as if we were members all weekend which was appreciated.

Resort homes we stayed in were great for group our size. The lodge and new golf villas also looked awesome from outside.

Will definitely make a return trip. Only 2 1/2 hours from Detroit area is nice bonus


Pace of Play: Average

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Excellent

Quality of food & beverage: Good

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I recommend this course


"Excellent course"


kbayerlein's avatar
Age:  25-34
Gender:  Male
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Once a week
Handicap:  15-19

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 09/10/2015
First time playing

Reviewed on

Played on a Thursday at 3pm for 100 bux. That's a pretty good deal for this course. Club house is beautiful. Everyone from the guy at check in to the ranger were very nice.<br/> Course is two different nines. The front is Forest and the back is dunes. I enjoyed the variety of holes-very pretty holes with water as well. My favorite thing about this course was the greens. Very fast but rolled true. Very playable course-pretty open fairways but approach shots to greens were well guarded.<br/> We ate dinner at the club house after the golf and it was awesome. Very good service and even better food.<br/> Can't wait to come back and play here when the new course is up and running!


Pace of Play: Good

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Excellent

Quality of food & beverage: Excellent

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent


I recommend this course


"Not a Bucket List Course"


MrWhiteTees's avatar
Age:  55-64
Gender:  Male
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Once a week

3 3.0 stars from 5 Played on 09/02/2015
First time playing

Reviewed on

The course is beautifully manicured. The greens are smooth and fast. The problem is the price. The Grayling/Gaylord area of northern Michigan is full of finely manicured courses. Nothing here really puts this course above those. I paid $149.00 and could've found similar golf within 25 miles for $80.00.


Pace of Play: Good

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Good

Value for the Money: Poor

Quality of food & beverage: Average

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent


I don't recommend this course


Commented on 11/24/2015

I agree! I also found that my experience fell way short of expectations.


"Golfing Treat"


GDSmyth's avatar
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Few times a week
Handicap:  10-14

5 5.0 stars from 5 Played on 08/29/2015
First time playing Played with a group Used cart Played 18 holes Good weather Verified Purchaser

Reviewed on

This is a beautiful and beautifully maintained course, with interesting holes throughout. I will definitely try to return, maybe with a group!


Pace of Play: Excellent

Course Conditions: Excellent

Staff Friendliness: Excellent

Value for the Money: Good

Quality of food & beverage: Excellent

Off-Course Amenities: Excellent

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I recommend this course


"Great course, HORRIBLE GNAT PROBLEM!"


richadams43's avatar
Skill:  Intermediate
Plays:  Few times a week
Handicap:  5-9

2 2.0 stars from 5 Played on 08/15/2015
Previously played Played with a group Used cart Played 18 holes Good weather Verified Purchaser

Reviewed on

Been dreaming of playing this course for several years. However, it is about a 6hr drive away. Finally said heck with it. I booked a $78 hot deal time for me & my son as a final summer golf trip. We have played several top 100 courses but forest dunes would be the highest rated we have played. Was so looking forward to it even with the LONG drive. Being from central Ohio we have played over half of the top rated courses in Ohio alone. As well as many other very fine courses that do not show up on top lists... Anyway, after leaving the house at 8am and arriving at forest dunes just before 2pm we were both beyond excited. After arriving we quickly loaded up and checked in. Hit a few balls on the range to get warmed up and on to the 1st tee. We were in golf heaven. Or so we thought. After finishing on the 1st green we knew the bug spray (RARELY use) which i carry in my bag must be applied. We proceeded to apply bug spray at least every other hole to no avail. For the next 4hrs we were caught in a SWARM of gnats! Felt as if i swallowed, inhaled and was ear penetrated by 100's of gnats during our round. We sincerely tried to ignore the problem and enjoy the beautiful course and facilities. I honestly could not take even a moment to look around and enjoy the highly rated course we drove so far and spent so much to play. All i can say is whomever has rated this course must have been furnished much superior bug spray than i have. A dream golf trip shattered. $156 for a forest dunes twosome hot deal + $80 in gas for a 12hr round trip drive + besieged by a million gnats = a unexpected horrible golfing experience.


Pace of Play: Good

Course Conditions: Fair

Staff Friendliness: Average

Value for the Money: Fair

Off-Course Amenities: Good

Course Difficulty:  Somewhat Challenging


I don't recommend this course



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