ERCourse

Our golf course: more than our famous par-3s

An excerpt from an article in Golf Australia by Brendan James probably best sums up what makes Eagle Ridge one of the best courses in the state:

A memorable feature of the Eagle Ridge layout is the quality of its par-3s. The first of these – the 170-metre 6th – is, for mine, the best of the quartet. A long iron or hybrid is required to reach the two-tiered and slightly elevated green, which is surrounded by deep bunkers and shrubs. The most ominous of the bunkers is the cavernous sandy pit that lies between tee and green. Unlike the 6th, the most recently designed 155-metre par-3 8th offers a full view to the player standing on the elevated tee. As the breeze whips up into your face, you have to try and hit a tee shot that will stay low into the wind, make the distance to the green and hold its line in the air to avoid the six bunkers surrounding the putting surface. The 8th also features a sea of sand from tee to green, while a stone retaining wall short of the green creates an amphitheatre feel around the green.

The extensive redesign of Eagle Ridge’s bunkering a few years ago really added to the quality of the closing hole.1 The 515-metre par-5 18th calls for length, accuracy and good strategy to make par. Having driven from an elevated tee, you are then faced with several questions with large bunkers hugging the edges of the fairway for most of the remaining 200-plus metres to the green.

A cross bunker about 50 metres short of the green also comes into account. The green is enormous ... and is almost entirely surrounded by a picturesque lake. More than two-thirds of the green’s fringe slopes steeply down to a watery grave.

Eagle Ridge is definitely a quality alternative to the neighbouring links layouts. While trouble lurks on many holes, it doesn’t impinge greatly on a generous field of play. Bearing that in mind, novice players and good golfers will derive as much pleasure as each other out of the course.