Prior to 1963, the entire Gun Lake area did not have a golf course. Local enthusiasts had to travel out of town to get their weekend morning fix, and younger residents had nowhere to become acquainted with the game. It would take a man who had never played a round of golf in his life to give the community a welcoming locale to practice the game and unveil heat seeking three-woods. This visionary, Frank Tichvon, turned his greenhorn status into green-thumbed activism, building a modest yet challenging nine-hole course that thrilled locals with tee shots down beautiful tree-lined fairways and breaking putts across manicured greens. The course's popularity brought about the construction of a second nine-hole layout, and by 1987, the course had grown into a 27-hole destination sprawled across more than 200 acres of verdant Michigan terrain. Eighteen-hole combinations range in length from 5,200 yards up to 6,373, challenging golfers with tight fairways framed by mature arbors that kidnap gullible golf balls.
Course at a Glance: * 27-hole course, par of 36 on each 9-hole side * 18-hole length of up to 6,373 yards from back tees * 18-hole rating of 67.2?69.1 from back tees * 18-hole slope of 105?110 from back tees * Two sets of tees
As the sun rises each morning, the smell of dew summons golfers to Orchard Hills Golf Course, a scenic, 27-hole complex with one 18-hole course and a separate, 9-hole track. Cleaved through 6,026 yards of tree-lined terrain, the 18-hole monolith requires precise play and whispered Ralph Waldo Emerson quotes to conquer its topographical challenges. The par 72 layout showcases multiple memorable shots, including forced carries onto water-protected greens on both the second and fourth holes.
Slightly shorter than the other two nines, the East course blankets the countryside with a straightforward layout that begins with a tricky, 425-yard right dogleg. A staff of golf pros presides over Orchard Hills’ pro shop, where guests can upgrade their equipment, schedule a lesson to hone swings, or learn to read greens written in their doctor’s handwriting.
18-Hole Course at a Glance: