October 6, 2014
Curious about this one.
What is your favourite golf course you have played in each Canadian province (edit - or territory) you have visited?
Does not have to be the BEST course - just your favourite and, briefly, for what reason?
Golf Geek, Golf Industry Lifer (30 seasons and counting), PGA of Canada Candidate For Membership, Titleist Certified Fitting Professional
October 26, 2014
I have been to every province, but unfortunately I've only played golf in three, plus a territory. I do have some favourites, though they're mostly about experiences as opposed to pure golf.
In Ontario, I'd have to say Grand Niagara in Niagara Falls is my favourite. It's a great course, well conditioned and a ton of fun to play, but it's mostly my favourite because of the good times we have at a tournament down there every year. I think this summer will be the 8th annual version? We get people from all over Canada, the US and occasionally from as far away as Europe, Asia and Australia. A blast every year.
In Quebec, my favourite course that I've played is Larrimac. I played there the morning before my wedding, it's close to the cottage so I can nip up there, play 9 and be back in 2 hours, it's super quirky.... I don't know, I just like it. I wish the greens were quicker, but that's about it.
I've played Yellowknife Golf Club in the NWT. I played in their annual Midnight Classic golf tournament a few years back and that was definitely my oddest round. We teed off at midnight on summer solstice in a 9 hole shotgun with something like 350 people in the tournament, it took 4 or 5 hours to finish. Sand fairways and astroturf over concrete greens, mosquitoes as big as helicopters and as plentiful as water in an ocean, it was a completely different golf experience. I loved it.
In Alberta, it's Jasper Park Lodge by a lot. The course is incredible, easily my favourite course that I've ever played. But Jasper is also one of my favourite places in the world, with beautiful scenery, great hiking and a fun little town. My wife and I would spend Canada Day at the Jasper Park Lodge every summer we lived out west, and I would get to play an early round each day before heading off to explore the area later in the morning. Wish I could still make that trip every year, but it's a little tougher from Ottawa than from Calgary.
December 12, 2014
I am missing SK, NS and the Territories.
BC - University Club (Vancouver) - Just a really nice track. I like that it is in the city, but for the most part doesn't feel like it.
AB - Heritage Point (Calgary) - Only course I have played in the Province. ScoreGolf Top 100 in 2014.
MB - St. Boniface Golf Club (Winnipeg) - Only course I have played in Province, but a really fun track. Not overly long.
ON - Tarandowah Golfers Club (London) - Just a great test of golf
QC - Montreal Country Club (St. Lambert) - Very flat course, but good use of bunkers to make it challenging.
NB - Club de Golf Fraser Edmunston (Edmunston) - Very memorable course, great use of elevation
PEI - Avondale Golf Course (Vernon River) - links front 9, wooded back 9, very unique.
NL - Humber Valley Resort (Between Deer Lake and Corner Brook) - Almost every aspect of it is off the chart. There is a reason it was ranked 16 on ScoreGolf Top 100. A true hidden gem.
December 11, 2014
My list of the favourite (or only) courses that I have played in the provinces and the NT of Canada follows:
Newfoundland: Pippy Park Golf Course in St. John's is 18 holes of hillside golf overlooking the city and the harbour. When the wind blows, which is always, it really blows. They last time I played there, I could hit a 3 iron 190 (now I can't get it airborne). I had to hit a 3 iron into a gale from 130 yards. Incredible fun.
PEI: Crowbush is my favourite. If the wind is blowing, which it generally is, then this is a real challenge, especially the 17th, which reminds me of a line in a novel I read decades ago: "colder than a witch's tit on a windy hill."
Nova Scotia: Without doubt, Cape Breton Highlands is my favourite. The holes are so enjoyable, and the scenery is beautiful.
New Brunswick: This one's a tossup between Mactaquac (outside of Moncton), Gowan Brae (in Bathurst) and Aroostook Valley, which straddles the Maine-NB border.
Quebec: I'd have to say this one goes to the Royal Ottawa, though I still hate some of the blind fairways.
Ontario: I love playing the old Board of Trade course, now known as The Country Club. Love those rolling and treed fairways.
Manitoba: There are two here that I loved playing: Niakawa, within the city of Winnipeg, and Quarry Oaks, southwest of the city. I never left either course without a smile on my face.
Sakatchewan: Riverside Country Club wins the honours.
Alberta: The original 18 at Banff has my heart. The scenery is spectacular, and the holes are perfect. I was once in Banff for a 5 day conference, during which I never missed a session and presented two papers. A friend and I arrived on Friday afternoon of the week before. When we left on Saturday of the following week, I had played 9 rounds on the course!
British Columbia: I have always had a fondness for the University golf course in Vancouver. I could always find a game there, and always enjoyed myself. Great spot.
Northwest Territories: The only course that I played in Yellowknife was the Yellowknife Golf Club, a 9 hole expanse of sand and Astroturf. You haven't live until you've had a go at that, especially at night, and I mean "at night." The first tee is an extension of the porch in the clubhouse!!!
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