Elmbrook Golf Course
|Black M: 69.2/117||351||171||487||374||379||382||511||308||215||3178||315||474||184||473||147||269||241||380||360||2843||6021|
|Blue M: 67.4/116||343||161||467||321||339||366||485||285||170||2937||297||468||176||464||143||254||241||357||337||2737||5674|
|White M: 63.9/103 W: 69.0/123||302||142||388||268||271||340||417||264||142||2534||270||385||154||419||128||236||221||306||285||2404||4938|
|Gold M: 57.3/87||127||80||218||170||165||183||228||191||88||1450||172||234||102||194||128||154||160||143||195||1482||2932|
|Gold Junior W: 68.3/98||127||80||218||170||165||183||228||191||88||1450||172||234||102||194||128||154||160||143||195||1482||2932|
Conditions are not great
I've played a few time, and every time I've played, it seems like the conditions have gotten worse. It does not make for a very enjoyable experience. They should at least lower their rates to match the conditions because it hurt me to pay that much for brown grass and leaky mowers. The views are nice, but without good conditioning, I can't recommend this course. There are much better places to play in the area for less money.
Worth playing if just for the view from the 6th tee box alone
Played the front 9 on this course with my father during a vacation in Traverse City. Pace of play was great as we finished 9 holes in well under 2 hours on a weekday afternoon. The staff was very friendly from the booking of the tee time over the phone to giving some tips about blind tee shots and the best views from the course. Definitely worth a 5 star rating. As stated in the title of the review, the view from the 6th tee box is also worthy of a 5 star rating. However, the rest of the course is what it is; a very average course tucked away a couple of miles outside of Traverse CIty.
Pros: As stated above, the staff friendliness and the view from the elevated 6th tee box stand out to me. The view from the tee box gives you a perfect vantage point to see Traverse City, the west bay, the east bay, and Old Mission Peninsula. Its beautiful looking out at that and then having a 382 yard par 4 laid out directly underneath you. When a hole makes you take out your phone and take multiple pictures of it, you have something special on your hands. A picture of the hole/view will be posted on my Instagram account (same SN, Iamdiesel18).
Besides that, the course was challenging. Tight fairways on some of the holes. OB, natural areas, mature trees, and thick rough also come into play on multiple holes and will gobble up errant shots. I hit driver, 3 wood, and hybrid off of various tees so this course isn't just a course to bomb it even though the overall yardage is "short" by today's standards. It is a course with good variety including elevation changes, blind shots, driveable par 4's, challenging par 3's, and par 5's that are reachable in 2 shots. My dad who maybe plays once or twice a year was able to scratch out a couple of pars and bogeys and enjoyed himself. If a beginner AND an advanced golfer both enjoy the same course, that speaks volumes for playability.
Cons: When a beginning golfer points out deficiencies in course conditions, that's not good. Patches of hard pan and either diseased or really, really chewed up greens can be found throughout the front 9 holes. I had just played Forest Dunes and The Loop. Based upon the price we paid to play, I didn't expect the same course conditions as those other two courses. I did think that for being a "Traverse City golf course", it would be in better than average condition.
Verdict: My guess is that this course isn't trying to compete with the resort courses in the area. It appears to be very comfortable and content with where it currently stands. If you want pristine conditions, pay the extra money and play the resort courses in the area. The Grand Traverse Resort is a half hour away, however you'll pay almost 3 times the price to play there (and that's not even for The Bear course or The Wolverine course). If you want a "value" course in the Traverse City area to take your family to, this would be the place to take them. In addition to normal golf, they also have a foot golf course on the course. Again, a good thing to get the entire family involved AND unlike on other courses, it did not interfere with the actual golf play on the course. Seriously, the price of a greens fee is worth it for the views, the relaxed setting, and the fun you can have playing here with your friends and/or family. This course does not advertise itself to be the best course in the area. Its a value play and one worth at least playing 9 holes on. I'm glad I took a chance on it and even my dad gave it a thumbs up.