Great Bear Golf Club
Great Bear Golf Club in East Stroudsburg offers northeast Pennsylvania's only Jack Nicklaus-designed course. Formerly known as Great Bear Golf & C.C., it changed ownership in 2012 but both the quality and popularity of the course have remained constant since it first opened in 1997. The course has garnered plenty of recognition over the years including being ranked as one of he best golf courses in Pennsylvania by both GolfWeek and Golf Digest. Nicklaus utilized the natural features of the site including the lakes and streams, rolling terrain, and abundant wetlands. In addition to all of the natural hazards, he also added nearly 50 strategically placed bunkers. Great Bear is a fair test but Nicklaus incorporated playability into his design as well, giving it appeal for a wide range of skill levels.
|White (W)||71||5754 yards||74.0||137|
|Red (W)||71||4949 yards||69.1||129|
|Black M: 73.5/143||376||189||455||514||462||436||175||578||373||3558||460||222||405||199||451||523||191||441||575||3467||7025|
|Gold M: 71.5/139||339||183||426||495||413||395||157||548||337||3293||424||196||383||178||437||508||166||417||535||3244||6537|
|Blue M: 69.8/135||323||162||403||475||393||375||127||503||322||3083||389||182||362||162||388||492||146||387||514||3022||6105|
|White M: 68.2/133 W: 74.0/137||308||155||384||466||375||340||112||483||291||2914||369||168||341||135||359||477||133||366||492||2840||5754|
|Red W: 69.1/129||279||127||341||437||311||300||96||447||265||2603||302||153||285||115||211||408||97||327||448||2346||4949|
Golf Advisor: Top Courses in Pennsylvania
Top course in the rea
Really enjoyed the round! Only 6 golfers playing beside myself I guess because the temperature was 45 and cloudy but no wind. I drive an hour and a half from North Jersey to play this wonderful course! Great layout challenging and well taken care of not to mention the great price $33!
Excellent layout but greens look like they were aerated a week prior so a bit bumpy. Proshop staff very rude right from when we first entered the proshop. They seem bot to like to much golf now clients in their facility is what i got from all this..... love the course but would never come back
First time playing this course after having heard about it for a few years. The layout is very good. Not much water at all but each hole presents its challenges. A few blind tee shots, especially early on the front nine. The layout demands you shape the ball in either direction if you want to score well. There are classic Nicklaus left to right doglegs, but also some holes where you have to draw the ball.
Fairways and greens are in good shape with the greens being sneaky quick despite the ball marks and high foot traffic. Fairways are generous but most of the holes narrow as you get closer to the green. Depending on the pin positions, you have to be very precise with your iron shots to avoid trouble around the greens.
Only complaint is pace of play. It was horrendous, five and a half hours. The rangers came by a few times but did nothing, which I don't understand. On the fifth hole a good pace came to a halt as there were three groups on the tee. Absolutely ridiculous. From then on it was very slow. The group in front of us had a guy who could barely hit the ball. He had no business being on a golf course, let alone one as difficult as this one.
Hidden in the hills of the Poconos, this Nicklaus designed course is one of the nicest around. Beautiful rolling fairways with conditions to match. This course requires almost every club in the bag and will test even the best. Now if only everyone fixed their ball marks on the green properly this course would be even more immaculate than it already is.
The layout is great, the only complaint would be that the greens were a little beat up. Too many players not fixing their ball marks.
All day round
Beautiful golf course, excellent staff. Now here comes the BUT. This course is semi private and the members do whatever they want. My foursome had a 930 tee time, the course looked empty. After playing the first time and things looking good, we came upon a foursome at the second tee. The told us they teed off at 830 and there were 2 8somes in front of them ( members). We called and complained and said we'd gladly take a refund and leave. Staff came out and denied the 8some, we at this time played 4 holes and were 20 min behind their scheduled time ( as listed on the scorecard). What a shame, such a beautiful course, but I'll never play there again. Make it private and stop stealing the publics money. Don't go or i promise you'll be sorry
Really Great Course
We golfed with another couple at Renault, told them we were going to vacation in the Poconos and they recommended we play Great Bear. It was a great recommendation on their part. We have not played many Nicklaus designed courses, so for us this course was a treat. Mr. Nicklaus makes you think, there were not many shots where you could just take out a club and hit it. Coming from flat southern New Jersey it is nice to play a course that has some elevation & elevation changes, but not where every shot is a blind one. This course fit the bill nearly perfectly. The last two par 5(s) in particular were thinking holes, wish I would have known there was trouble in back beside the obvious trouble in front. It was a nice touch to have bottled water every couple of holes available as it was a fairly warm day (high 80s guessing). This course must be really pretty in the fall. The locker rooms were wow too. We are going to add this course to our Pocono Mountain vacation tour.
A Gem in the Poconos
Pace of play was slow until two foursomes finally let our twosomes pass. Everyone was friendly and helpful given it was our 1st time playing the course. The course was challenging especially the slight movements on the greens. I would have like the greens to faster.
I can’t wait to visit again even though the drive was close to 1+ hours.
Beautiful course. Very well maintained for the time of year.
Thank you very much. Our team works very hard to make sure you have some of the best conditions in town to play and with all of the rain you know they've had their work cut out for them. This is why we appreciate your wonder compliment.
Amazing course that is worth the drive and the money.
My cousin Bob and I drove down from the Binghamton area on a cool, October afternoon. The course was lightly trafficked and we were able to breeze through check in. The pro shop staff were cordial and helped get us started in the right direction. The course was wet from the previous day's rain and as such, it was cart path only. Fortunately, we were both hitting the ball well and didn't have to do a lot of exploring. Many of the traps had standing water and were unplayable (not the course's fault). The fairways were in great shape, despite being spongy. The tee boxes were a little beat up, but they're clearly doing work on them to prepare for winter. The greens were in nice shape and sneaky tough. The carts were gas powered and clean/well maintained. One little quirk to note is that hole #8 gets you the closest to the clubhouse. #9 then plays away from it and #10 is nowhere near it. As such, grab a "to go" menu from Jack's bar/grille on check in (as we did) and call in to order your food before teeing off on #7. The food was high quality and reasonably priced, considering the venue. We had a great time and will definitely be back.
Thank you for your 5-star rating! With all of the rain we've been having the past few weeks we appreciate your kind words and consideration. Our team has been working as hard as they can to try and give you the best course conditions possible. Your compliment is wonderful validation of all of their hard work. We hope that you'll be back sooner rather than later.
We appreciate your 4-star rating and review. We hope you join us for another round soon.
Absolutely beautiful course. Every hole a little different, nice elevations throughout, challenging par 3s and 5s, greens in excellent condition. Will play this course again.
Thank you for your 5-star rating! Book another round with us soon.
Reluctantly share this with the world. Whenever I’m in the area must play
GREAT LAYOUT, but SLOWWW PLAY, useless ranger and no course maps anywhere.
Considering the recent deluge and greens aerification, the course was in very good shape. Some of the tees were bare and most were uneven. The green complexes are vintage Nicklaus, fair, but penal to bad shots. There were more than a few blind tee shots. Normally this would not be a problem, but since there were no course maps to be had anywhere, we had to rely on our playing partners who had played there before.
The pace of play was HORRID. The ranger was unable and unwilling to help. He blamed the slow play on one group, but said he was not going to do anything. What good is a ranger if they don’t move people along? After 4 hours in 90 degree heat, on the 14th tee, he joked as to why we weren’t further along. Not funny. He said he was unwilling to have them skip a hole, because they players were old. We figured it was be abuse they were members.
The fairways are generous, but undulating, the greens were frequently a significant trek from the cart path, usually sloped severely. If you cannot walk up and down 3 flights of stairs, do not play this course.
excellent course - golf now price great - good 19th hole - some wet spots after lots of rain but to no consequence