Most WNY golfers recognize two seasons: Golf season and “When is this snow going to melt so I can golf again?” season. The latter seems to last much longer than the former.
Occasionally Mother Nature smiles upon us. She will push the mercury into the 50s and 60s for a few days, during our most frigid months, allowing those beautiful fairways to peek through.
The most starved among us will find the nearest open course to take advantage of this respite before reality strikes, and snows blanket the greens for another golf-less few dozen days. But the flowers always bloom and the sun always shines again. That’s when we get to take advantage of the strength of the WNY golf scene: the amount of courses the area has to offer.
With over 50 public and private courses in WNY, golfers have the ability to sharpen their skills playing a variety of links, each with their own unique set of challenges. Here are a few public courses to take on this year.
12292 Clarence Center Rd., Akron
Do a quick Google search and you will find Arrowhead consistently ranked among the top five public courses in WNY. With more than 60 bunkers on the course, each hole will have you strategizing and debating your shot selection to try to minimize your time in the sand.
5122 Clinton Street Rd., Route 33 Batavia
We’ve all had those rounds when we’ve walked off the 18th green and wished the day wasn’t over. This 27-hole course is perfect for those days. Finish your first 18, maybe take a little break with some seafood bisque at the course restaurant, then get in line for another nine holes. The size and dining amenities of this course make it a great venue for corporate tournaments and large group outings. Terry Hills boasts three different 18-hole combinations, so playing the course feels like a new experience every time.
3052 Transit Rd., Orchard Park
Harvest Hill will be celebrating its 10th birthday in 2017. Old barns and golden heather have been incorporated into the layout of this course giving it a beautiful pastoral setting. Each hole has multiple tee placements allowing players of all skill sets to enjoy what this course has to offer. With the thick rough surrounding the fairways you’re going to want to hit it straight, or you’ll find yourself going through a few sleeves of balls by the end of the day. Drown your sorrows at Rooth’s Sky-Lite Bar & Grill, located in the clubhouse newly built in 2013.
4085 Transit Rd., Orchard Park
If you don’t have the time for Harvest Hill, ride up the road a mile or so and play Bob-O-Link. For this par-3 course you’ll only need a putter, pitching wedge and maybe your favorite all-purpose club (my seven-iron has gotten me out of a jam or two). Hit the course at the right time and you can usually zip through a round in a few hours. But if you have a chance, take advantage of the large spotlights that illuminate the course at night. Watching your tee shot launch deep into the night sky, hoping to see it drop from the darkness onto the well-lit green, adds an intriguing dimension to a “friendly” match with a buddy.
Story topics: Discover