The Pete Dye Golf Trail links seven courses throughput Indiana and reaches its northern terminus at the 18-hole Mystic Hills Golf Club, a challenging course set amongst wetlands and woodlands, presenting elements of links and parkland layouts. Here, the golf course design skills that made Pete Dye a household name manifest through fairways rolling through native prairie grasses and sand bunkers standing sentry to each green—difficult obstacles for golfers accustomed to only hitting into fairways with bumpers. Furthermore, players should be wary of getting too comfortable with playing the links-style front nine, as the back nine presents a more traditional layout stocked with trees and other organic hazards.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 71 course * Total length of 6,780 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 73 from the back tees * Course slope of 133 from the back tees * Five sets of tees per hole
Sycamore Golf Club is an island of shimmering emerald stamped onto an ocean of rolling beige. Once a wide-open farmland, the 100-acre parcel underwent major changes in 1961, when landscapers cleared away the wheat fields and cow communes to make way for the expansive 18-hole course. Today, the charm of the land remains thanks to a trio of ponds and two creeks that make their presence known on 15 holes, all of which are surrounded by newly planted tree groves.
True to the down-home feel of the area, Sycamore Golf Club is managed by the husband-and-wife team of Todd and Kathy Sandow. Kathy minds the pro shop and ushers twosomes and foursomes onto the first tee. And Todd, a PGA Professional, helps with club fittings and lessons for players of all levels.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Total length of 6,311 yards from the back tees * Course rating of from the back tees * Course slope of from the back tees * Three sets of tees per hole * Scorecard
A 9-hole, par 36 layout, Dogwood Glen Golf Course packs plenty of tee-to-green challenges in its 3,329-yard layout. The course opens with a 570-yard par-five—the first of two 550-plus-yard par-fives—letting golfers tee it high and swing freely to start their round. The course's five par-fours all measure more than 345 yards from the tips, making all but the longest-hitters golfers take a full swing with a wedge, short-iron, or curtain rod to make it to the green in regulation. With five tee options, the course caters to players of all abilities, and also provides alternative tee placements for those who want to play the course twice for an 18-hole round.
Course at a Glance: * 9-hole, par 36 course * Length of 3,329 yards from the farthest tees * Five tee options * Scorecard
It’s difficult to hit a target from far away, which is why holes in one are rare and the Goodyear blimp has never been shot successfully with an arrow. Drive hard with a vengeance, thanks to this Groupon.
Expert instructors Jim Garrett and Tim Holt—a PGA professional—impart the fundamentals of driving and putting during a four-week program. The first three lessons last 1.5 hours, and the final lasts 2.5 hours. Though students may bring their own clubs, all necessary equipment will be provided. Choose from eight different sessions on the program schedule, one of which is ladies only; the first program begins on May 7.
[[m:####Juday Creek Golf Course
Instead of easing into a well-earned retirement after years in the restaurant business, Mike and Linda Rogers decided to embark on a new challenge: building a golf course. In 1989, they opened Juday Creek Golf Course, whose bent-grass fairways strike enough of a balance between challenging and accessible to have won the Indiana Golf Course Owners Association’s 2009 award for Indiana Golf Course of the Year.
Now managed by the couple’s daughter Michelle Wittig, the course’s emerald expanses continue to compel swingers of all stripes to lace up their cleated shoes and argyle garter belts. A journey across the course’s thirteen holes brings one face-to-face with manifold water hazards, many of which stand directly in the path to the putting green. There are 56 sand traps that raise the stakes of each game even higher, making for tough shots and partners who would rather build sandcastles instead of continuing on. Before or after games, golfers can take lessons and receive personal feedback from a pair of skilled instructors, one of whom is a PGA professional.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Length of 6,940 yards * Course rating of 73.3 * Slope rating of 134 * Four tee options * See the scorecard and layout:
Named after the prolific course architect who sculpted its front nine in 1927, Donald Ross Golf Club offers an 18-hole, par 72 layout that cleaves through groves of towering trees. Though the longer of the two nines, the front eases golfers into the round with more straight-forward holes—three of the four opening holes are among the five easiest on the course. More difficult terrain awaits on the back nine, where golf balls may be lost or set free in a stream that cuts across six different holes.
The Club offers a practice green where golfers can get a feel for the speed of the course conditions by chipping, putting, and slip-and-sliding across its grassy surface. In the event of inclement weather, players can head inside, where a Foresight golf simulator offers digital recreations of rounds at Carnoustie, Cog Hill, and other world-famous courses.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Length of 6,821 yards from the tips * Course rating of 72.5 from the tips * Slope rating of 126 from the tips * Four tee options
Back Nine Family Fun Center condenses fun into the small, dimpled orbs of golf balls. At its driving range, clubs propel these balls as players hone each aspect of their swing. A nearby mini-golf course offers opportunities for good-natured family competition and successful confrontations with a windmill, and a pro shop stocks used clubs.