Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 17
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Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 17
Everybody gets excited about hitting the signature 17th green at Apple Tree Golf Course in Yakima, Washington. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
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Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 9
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Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 9
The massive double green that houses the flags for no. 9 and no. 18 sits on a ridge overlooking water at Apple Tree Golf Course. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Apple Tree Golf Course - clubhouse
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Apple Tree Golf Course - clubhouse
The clubhouse at Apple Tree Golf Course serves good food and views of the course. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 14
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Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 14
A waterfall roars next to the 14th green at Apple Tree Golf Course in Yakima, Wash. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 11
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Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 11
A hidden pond protects the 11th green at Apple Tree Golf Course in Yakima, Washington. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 10
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Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 10
The 10th hole of Apple Tree Golf Course heads into a neighborhood. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 9
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Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 9
The view from the ninth tee at Apple Tree Golf Course can intimidate golfers. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 7
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Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 7
The seventh hole at Apple Tree Golf Course soars over water. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 5
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Apple Tree Golf Course - hole 5
This pond captures approach shots to the fifth green at Apple Tree Golf Course in Yakima, Washington. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Apple Tree Golf Course - apple bunker
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Apple Tree Golf Course - apple bunker
An apple-shaped bunker -- complete with red sand -- guards the double green of holes nine and 18 at Apple Tree Golf Course in Yakima, Washington. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor

Apple Tree Golf Course, home of the famous apple-shaped island green, is more than a one-hole wonder in Yakima, Washington

YAKIMA, Wash. -- Golfers travel for miles to take on the apple-shaped island green at no. 17 at Apple Tree Golf Course and usually leave impressed by the entire experience.

Architect John Steidel designed the 6,971-yard course in 1992, cutting holes from a century-old apple orchard that continues to grow trees and bear fruit.

Six strong par 4s highlight the more scenic front nine. The first hole drops off a ridge before climbing to an elevated green. The beastly fourth hole bends right, revealing a valley at the foot of an elevated green. The fairway of the par-4 fifth hole cants severely right to left with water near the green. More water guards the approach shot to the seventh green and makes the tee shot on the ninth hole the most intimidating of the day.

Apple Tree's back nine winds through a housing development, although some nice manmade water features spruce up the setting, especially the waterfall at the par-5 14th hole.

Hitting the famous apple green from an elevated tee 180 yards away isn't reason to celebrate. There are plenty of tough putts on the tilted, massive, 14,166-square-foot green.

A tricky risk-reward par 5 ends the round in style. Water off the tee will require most players to lay up. The second shot will ideally land short of a creek, setting up a demanding approach shot to an elevated double green. Misses will roll back to the bottom of the hill below the green or end up in the huge apple-shaped bunker. It's a delicious finish to an inspiring layout.

Jason Scott Deegan has reviewed more than 700 courses and golf destinations for some of the industry's biggest publications. His work has been honored by the Golf Writer's Association of America and the Michigan Press Association. Follow him on Twitter at @WorldGolfer.
Related Links
The John Steidel design at the Apple Tree Golf Course doesn't make coveted "best-of" lists by Golfweek or Golf Digest anymore, although something even more appealing continues to attract players. The club's famous apple-shaped island green draws golfers from near and far. The fruity theme of Apple Tree might come across as cheesy if the 6,971-yard course wasn't so darn good.
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Apple Tree Golf Course, home of the famous apple-shaped island green, is more than a one-hole wonder in Yakima, Washington
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