Dietz Creek Golf Range promotes on-course improvement with a multifaceted golf practice and service facility. Flush drives pierce the atmosphere above the course’s 300-yard driving range, where grass tees accommodate those who prefer a natural feel and turf mats cater to pacifistic 5-irons who consider divots barbaric. To fine-tune their short-game feel, players can chip balls at the short-game area or splash them out of the practice bunker. Inside, the darkened wonderland of Dietz’ Creek’s glo golf course invites guests to steer orbs across a black-lit circuit of rail-lined corridors teeming with obstacles including tricky ramps, a loopty loop, and swooping pterodactyls.
Indian Trail Golf Center acts as a peaceful practice oasis for players to perfect swings and hone their skills. Upon arrival, golfers insert tokens into the ball dispenser to receive their allotted balls, which cascade into the bucket and jostle to be the first off the tee. The driving range is home to synthetic mats and natural-grass stations. In inclement weather, 10 covered hitting stations keep players dry as they blast balls into lower orbit and try to dislodge hail from rain clouds. After buckets have been depleted and swings satisfied, players can head to the practice green and squeeze in as many tap-ins as daylight allows. Indian Trail Golf Center stays open from 9 a.m. to dusk every day of the week except Tuesday, when it opens at noon.
Rustic Glen Golf Club beckons to clubbers of all handicaps with an 18-hole, par-72 layout that bobs and weaves across 6,469 yards of well-maintained greenery. The course’s fairways arch over rolling hills that add topographical variety, and water comes into play on five holes, striking fear in the synthetic hearts of all golf balls that never dreamed of one day befriending a catfish. The longest hole on the course—the 557-yard sixth—also happens to be the most difficult, and those who over-swing may push or pull their drives or second shots into a dense grove of trees perched ominously on the fairway’s left side. A 350-yard driving range with multiple target greens amply prepares players for upcoming rounds or tests that demand them to identify the color green.
Designed in 1989 by architect Harley Hodges, Pine View Golf Course sends golfers weaving through forests of towering Michigan pines, attempting a variety of shots using most of the clubs in their bags. Players choose from five sets of tees, varying the Championship course from as short as 4,101 yards from the green tees up to 6,490 from the blues. Golfers first traverse wide fairways that forgive slight errors in the front nine, then take on the back nine—known as "Rolling Pines" because of the large tree trunks that regularly roll across the course at incredible speed. Difficulty intensifies noticeably after the turn, as players must flex their par 5 prowess on the 10th and 18th holes.
Though only one body of water rests on the front nine of the Championship course, Pine View's third nine, known as "Little Pines," features water much more prominently. This relatively short par 30 test makes for a great introduction to the game, as players lob shots over ponds and streams or fit golf balls with goggles and send them to explore the depths.
Mark McCucumber’s keen architectural mind gave birth to the 18 championship holes that nestle amid Devil’s Ridge Golf Club’s 400 acres of woods, wetlands, and hills. Trees line the emerald fairways, which challenge golfers with rolling terrain that reaches elevation changes of up to 80 feet, inspiring some players to conscript mountain goats as caddies. Four sets of tees invite golfers of all stripes to aim their orbs away from the rippling surface of water hazards and more than a dozen mischievously placed sand bunkers. Sixty tee stations await golfers at the driving range to help them warm up before hitting the course. Then, after working up an appetite sawing down aim-blocking trees, they can relax with a bite to eat at The Devil’s Grille.
The 2012 golf season at Mulberry Hills Golf Club marks 50 years since architect Hank Clayton unveiled his verdant brainchild, a celebration that showcases the course’s maturation of ancient oak trees and tangled heather that now engulf the site's 188 meadowed acres. The natural habitat invites all players, from greenhorns to green-jacket holders, to take on the 18-hole excursion that covers 6,635 yards of pristine fairways, well-kempt greens, and vibrant flowers that border playable areas. As players captain their GPS–equipped 2012 Yamaha golf carts over the terrain, they encounter a gauntlet of obstacles that attempts to thwart drives, putts, and 3-iron swordfights. The par 3, 155-yard fourth hole presents a difficult forced carry over water onto a peninsula green, the most challenging of the four holes featuring shots over water. The course superintendants keep rounds moving with a pace-of-play program that ensures rounds last 4.5 hours or less, leaving plenty of daylight for sunbathing golf balls or knitting a skirt from collected divots. After the round, players can celebrate their dominance over nature at Hank's Place Bar & Grill with a menu of American fare, draft beers, and free WiFi.