The Arthur Hills course opens for the season on Friday, May 8.
The Arthur Hills course bears all the markings of the master designer. Beginning with a wide, bunker-dotted fairway and continuing to a narrowing approach - and fascinating green complex, this deceptively challenging course provides sufficient variety and complexity to test the most experienced golfer.
After the course turns, its character continues to evolve. The approach to the 11th hole, a lengthy par-5, begins a three-hole ascent to one of the highest points in the region and the magnificent view from the 13th tee. The round then concludes with conviction - a 577 yard monster of a par-5 that is reachable in two for those brave - or experienced - enough to attempt the long hit.
When the Arthur Hills first caught the attention of Michigan's golfing elite, it quickly earned a reputation as an essential test, bolstered by its brilliant design, superb course conditions and breathtaking good looks - all of which were showcased on Big Break X: Michigan, the Golf Channel's popular golf travelogue.
250 Heather Drive
Harbor Springs, MI 49740
A gentle dogleg to the right, the tee shot will be best suited down the left center of the fairway. This will open up the best angle to attack this green that is flanked by a bunker on the front right and some tricky moguls to the left.
Play safely out to the right or challenge the natural dune area and hit your tee shot towards the green. Though you may not make it there, it will set up a closer approach to this elevated green. Those that take the safer route should be sure that their tee shot doesn't run through the fairway and into the rough.
There is a long bunker stretching the right side of the fairway. You will need to play to a line that you are able to carry your ball across it to the short grass. From here you are faced with more bunkering on the left and all the way up to the green. The fairway makes a zig zag as it approaches the thin strip of green that slopes from right to left.
Plenty of room to the right off the tee, a pond on the left will be in play the entire hole. Avoid the pond and use the natural contours of the green to access the back hole locations. The green will feed any balls that are hit to the center into that quadrant of the putting surface.
Arguably the toughest par 4 at BOYNE. This hole is just long. Smash a drive between the stripes and at all costs avoid the rows of pines that frame the outer edges of the hole. The green is well bunkered and falls off hard to the right, creating a number of different ways to play from. None of which are very easy.
Two pot hole bunkers in the fairway will be a tough way to play your second from. Try to fit your drive on the right side of the fairway. Your second shot should be down the right too, as there is further bunkering in the landing area. The green has two levels and it is very important to be on the proper tier for the best shot at a bird.
A small target, the seventh hole has a deep front bunker and sits elevated to the rest of the surrounding area. This makes chipping and pitching increasingly difficult. Be sure to double check the wind here and make your best swing.
A wide landing area is made somewhat smaller by another one of Arthur Hills' fairway pot bunkers. The longest bunker on the golf course can be reached off of the tee, but will see the most action up near the green. An overhanging tree will force you to shape a shot around it if your tee shot is too far down the left hand side.
The green is a mere ribbon of short grass. A natural wetlands area runs all the way down the right hand side and in front. The right side is a classic challenge of uneven lies that can make an up and down very difficult. If you aren't in good shape here, its not a bad time to try and limit the damage. If you are looking at bogey.... don't make double.
A short start to the back nine, the tenth is your best shot at hitting the green from the tee on the Arthur Hills course. A safe, long iron or fairway wood can also be played to set up a short approach. The difficulty here is around the green. Deep bunkers and steep run off areas descend sharply from the greens edge. It is like a Donald Ross hole on the juice.
The tee shot here is not difficult, but is important. A wide landing area ends to the right at the edge of a pond that can be cleared with a long tee shot. Playing to the left side can result in being blocked out by a large hill. The next shot is blind, so if it is your first time, go take a look and pick a tree to aim at. A challenging green complex will keep you on your toes; til the little ball goes.
Number 12 keeps right on climbing up the hill. A cavernous bunker on the left side challenges you to play short, creating a longer approach, or, play to the right and risk being blocked out by a cluster of trees on the left. The green slopes from left to the right and playing from the left side of the green can be trickier than back up the hill from the collection area on the right.
BOYNE's Everest! If you've ever wondered what it would be like to hit a driver as hard as you can from the top of one of our ski slopes... here is your chance! Arguably a signature hole for all of northern Michigan, the fairway is wide enough to let the next three groups play through, together. Further down the hill, some will go for the green in two, some will lay up short leaving a wedge shot approach. The green slopes inward from most of the edges, creating a bowl effect. This can filter balls closer to the hole, but make for trickier putting. Get a good read and go for it.
Be careful when choosing a club here. Your first reaction may be to take one less because it feels downhill, however the green runs on a diagonal from front left to back right. This means that to carry the ball to the 'front edge' on the right side is more like a middle yardage or more. Anyone ignoring this advice will find out that the false edges from earlier in the round were just little babies compared to this monster. Picture John Daly in 1999 at Pinehurst or Phil Mickelson at Torrey Pines in 2008 when the ball keeps coming back to your feet. Some will seek the forgiveness of a max 10 from their partners.
Your last plunge to the bottom of the hill, this elevated tee shot drops down to a fairway that doglegs to the right. Bunkers on the right side guard the hole from the greedy golfer, yet they can be cleared if you have a favorable wind. Make sure to take an extra club to the back left of this green. If the pin is up front or on the right side, go ahead and be aggressive to try and make a late round birdie.
If you didn't fall in love with the bunker on #8 earlier in the round... it wanted a chance to charm you again. The 16th green sits on a perch just above the bunker on the other side from the eighth. A good tee shot is huge, but if you do miss, the right side is the best for most hole locations.
A split fairway awaits you. Depending on the hole and tee location, this hole can play like 4 different holes on any given day. From left tee to right pin, left tee to left pin, etc. Towering trees help to shape the hole from the inside out. The green is divided into multiple sections as well and as always, being on the proper tier can lead to a much better scoring opportunity.
Your final shot at glory, this hole will certainly test your game. A tee shot down to the left has to flirt with the water, but will set up the only chance at clearing the water on your second shot to the edge of the green. A safer play to the right involves fairway bunkers and playing around the pond. The green slopes hard to the water. It is very easy to get greedy and run one by, so be aggressive only if you are under the hole.