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Hole 4 is where Momma stood her ground in my tee box.
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Golfing in Northern Michigan is over until next year.
As the season was winding down, I tried to play a few rounds in between the cold spells and the rain. Getting used to the new clubs and a lot of my shots are improving. Absolutely loving my 7-wood, still struggling with the irons although the 9 has started teasing me with some decent shots. 😊
We made a trip to Northport at the tip of the Leelanau Peninsula in the northwest lower peninsula. There is a little 9-hole course that I have been following on social media that intrigued me and I had been wanting to try. So, we made a tee time, packed up our clubs and headed to Northport.
Northport Creek is a par 35 that was designed by Jerry Matthews on some old farmland. As we were golfing, we ran across solar panels in a couple of places and discovered that the course is solar powered. COOL FACT!! Northport Creek is the first solar powered golf course in the country.
The course does not server alcohol but is cooler friendly. They have vending machines for snacks and non-alcoholic beverages plus an ice machine that we very much appreciated. The staff was friendly, and rates were very reasonable. I think we paid $25 each for 9 holes with cart. It is obvious that the owners take pride in their course, grounds and facility was very well maintained.
One of the funny/strange/cute things we saw was a couple finishing their round. The woman was in a cart, the man was using a pull cart and then all of a sudden, I realized they had their little dog with them. The dog was walking with the man and seemed to be well behaved.
There is one in every crowd.
We arrived about 25 minutes early, checked in, bought some pops, added ice, and loaded the cart. Fully intending to wait for our tee time. The group that had the tee time ahead of us were a foursome and were waiting for one of their friends. We overheard them say that he was going to be late, so my husband asked if we could jump ahead of them. We were a twosome, their buddy was going to be late, seemed like a reasonable thing to ask. The look on one of their faces that we had the nerve to ask such a thing, shocked me. He very nastily asked how slow do we play? He assumed we played slow. As my husband started to tell them that we play quite fast, I stopped him and said we would wait.
By the time their friend arrived, loaded up his clubs and all 4 began, it was our tee time. Northport Creek generously books in 15-minute increments, plenty of time between groups. But because our tee time was happening as they were leaving the tee box, we had some slow play.
The first tee was awesome for me with my tee box being 140 yards closer. I think that is the largest advantage I have ever had. He had 390 yds to go I had 250 yds. The way the hole was laid out it seemed like he was playing a par 5 hole and I was playing a par 3 hole. I would not enjoy that kind of advantage again until hole 9 where I would be 130 yards closer to the pin.
At the second hole when the group in front were far enough away and we could tee off, the group behind us just finished the first hole. My husband had already hit his drive, at that point. Because I did not want to be followed that closely the whole round, we let them skip in front of us with the warning that there was a foursome in front of us.
After that we slowed our play way down, I did not tee off the second hole until the guys we let jump ahead were off the green. We continued this at almost every hole. This worked out well and we did not have anyone behind us until the 7th hole. It was a single and him catching up to us turned out to be a good thing.
Where is Hole 8?
Finding hole 8 proved to be a little challenging, not sure how we lost our bearings, but we did. We ended up back at hole 7th and the gentleman that caught up to us knew the course well and got us to the tee box. Once at the tee box I understood why we were confused. Hole 8 is par 3 with the tee box behind some taller wetlands with the green on the other side. If you see the flag and head that way you can easily miss the tee boxes if not paying attention.
The tee boxes were off the cart path in a little alcove that was easy to miss.
It was an interesting hole and usually when faced with a huge obstacle between the tee box and green you can bet, I will lose a ball. I did not, but I did hit it long. That worked out well for me because I was able to avoid the bunker protecting the pin and chip back towards the green.
Damn Dog Legs
The 9th hole was another long one for my partner at 390 giving me a 130-yard advantage, but it was a dog leg. That extra yardage was not going to save me. I do not like dog legs; my ball usually goes straight. I do not get that nice curve I see the rest of you get as it gently follows the turn. For me I need to hit it to elbow, or it will be a blow-up hole.
This picture was on the way to find my ball somewhere behind the sand trap on hole 9.
The turn looked to be the perfect distance for my drive, and I was feeling great about my chances. Although I was improving with the new clubs, I was still having moments with my driver where it would fly off to right. Yep, was short and went right. I was able to almost salvage the hole. I got a 7 on the par 4, so not a full disaster.
We will be back!
Even with the foursome being jerks at the beginning we had a lot of fun. Both of us enjoyed the course and will definitely be back again. The man we met at the 7th hole was a local and let us know that during tourist season the weekend are pretty busy and can be frustrating. He said mid-week was best and play was fairly smooth.
Being a very local course that is not on the way to anywhere, you expect some quirkiness. It is not unusual to have members at most courses jump around a little playing a hole here and there. There was an older gentleman that we first met in the clubhouse. He gave me directions on how to use a vending machine. 😊 We ran into him a couple of times sitting in his cart in the shadows waiting to jump in and play that hole. He was very kind, but it always startled me when we would turn a corner and bam, there he was.
The couple with the dog was odd as well. I am not sure if the course is dog friendly or not. Their Facebook page shows pictures of a couple of dogs on the course helping with maintenance. I do not see on their website or social media pages that dogs are welcome. If you want to golf with your dog, I recommend calling first.
The picture to the right is a to scale 3D model that was on display in the clubhouse that I thought was pretty cool.
See all the pictures we took that day
We took pictures of every hole with a few extras to show various parts of the course. You can view them all by clicking here.
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