Finalist – Best 9 Hole Course in Scotland 2023, Scottish Golf Tourism Awards
Golf course details – view the 125th Anniversary flyover of our course
- Holes: 9
- Designed by: Old Tom Morris
- Public/Private: Public
- Year opened: 1895
- Golf Season: Year round
- Guest Policy: Welcomed
Hole By Hole
Hole 1, Dyke, 223 yards, par 3
On paper, the Dyke hole looks to be a longish par 3. However, at first glance, the uphill tee shot looks even further, especially since a five-foot stone wall guards the front of the green. In Tom Morris’s day, the par was a four and a difficult one at that. Now a par 3 it is probably one of the toughest par 3’s in the world for the average golfer. The ‘Dyke’ is listed in Old Tom Morris’s “Best 18 Holes”.
Recently the ‘Dyke’ was voted as one of the top ten most difficult starting holes in Scottish Golf by readers of Bunkered Magazine.
Hole 2, Fairy Knowe, 277 yards, par 4
This short par 4 begins along a field with a fence and out of bounds on the left. After a blind drive, the golfer has a short approach to the green protected by two bunkers. The hole derives its name from ancient Scottish traditions of rituals of the fairies and druids. Near the green is a cone shaped mound that is the fairy knowe. Long ago, this mound was excavated and ancient remains were found but replaced.
Hole 3, Drumbrae, 362 yards, par 4
The 3rd hole is a slightly uphill par 4 with the course boundary running the full length of the hole to the left. An accurate drive is required to avoid the fairway bunker and trees on the right while not straying too far left. Once on the fairway, a mid to short iron is required to reach the elevated green. The green is protected by a large bunker on the front right and heavy rough at the back so requires an accurate, well placed approach to hold the green.
Hole 4, Cage, 314 yards, par 4
This short downhill par 4 features a blind tee shot, a generous fairway but with out-of-bounds to the left. The ideal second shot is played from a gully with another quaint stone wall (one of Tom Morris’ favourite hazards) guarding the front of the green, almost daring the golfer to skull the approach. For those who come shorter on their drive, a nice approach from an elevated position is required. With a slope on the right of the green, be careful not to catch and overshoot into the bunker at the back of the green.
Hole 5, Hollow, 208 yards, par 3
The 5th hole offers stunning views over a downhill tee shot to a green placed directly after a severely sloping hill, protected by two strategically placed bunkers. Confident players can sail the tee shot all the way to green directly hoping it will stick. Those wanting to play it shorter can use the steep down slope hill on the fairway to run the ball all the way to green but beware the bunkers on either side of the green which will catch any inaccurate tee shots.
Hole 6, Grampians, 330 yards, par 4
A challenging uphill tee shot with a blind left turn over an out of bounds ‘island’ and trees. Players must choose whether to go for the ‘Tiger’ line over the danger, or play it safe leaving a longer 2nd shot. Local knowledge is a factor here since the second shot is a blind uphill approach to an elevated green protected by a single bunker at the front left, with the 7th tee closely behind the green. Danger lies on the right of the fairway, with heavy rough and bushes making accurate play all the more important.
Hole 7, Oaks, 289 yards, par 4
This is another wonderful short par 4 with spectacular views, featuring a downhill drive over a large old oak tree that has become even more menacing over the past 100 years. The green is semi-visible from the tee and tempts the golfer to drive it. However a ball too far left will find trouble in the trees and greenside bunkers on the right and left can catch anyone out. A cluster of 3 small bunkers on the right of the fairway may trap shorter drives also.
Hole 8, Pendreich, 390 yards, par 4
The longest hole on the course, this uphill par 4 can be a real challenge into a strong wind. An accurate drive is required with tall trees on both sides of the fairway, before a sloped fairway often presents a technical challenge for the approach shot to the green. Tom Morris cunningly placed this fairway on a slope so that a shot hit weakly will find its way into light rough on the left. The approach is blind over a hill onto a raised green. With a steep drop off to the left of the green but a generous slope on the right helping bring any shots towards the green, being more right can be favourable. However, careful as the course wall and out of bounds beckons for any approach shots venturing too far to the right.
Hole 9, Sunnylaw, 167 yards, par 3
A lovely finish back to the clubhouse. This downhill par 3 requires an accurate tee shot to a green that slopes from left to right and is protected by a bunker to the back left. Any shot hit too firm will carry through the green and land in heavy rough and anything short will leave a tricky chip from a bare lie.