Dearborn Hills Golf Course
Teacher’s Comments: An executive course that really could use some more TLC.
Built in 1923 as part of a residential development, Dearborn Hills Golf course is thought to be Michigan’s oldest public course. It’s listed in the State Register of Historic sites.
That said, I don’t think the course’s current layout is the same as it was in 1923. I think it likely that the widening of roads and adjacent property development has altered the course, much as it has with the historic Rackham golf course a little further north. Indeed, the course is actually split by Telegraph,and there is tunnel under Telegraph to get from one side to the other.
From the tips, Dearborn HIlls measures 4,495 yards and plays to a 61.2/100. The furthest forward of the four sets of tees come in at 3,217 yards and plays to a 57.7/92. The course as currently constructed has six par fours; the remainder are par threes.
Because two thirds of the course consists of par threes and the entire layout is in a river valley, it is not a particularly interesting design. Unless you have land like the amazing Threetops Course in Gaylord or go to extraordinary efforts with green design and bunkering, par threes are all basically the same. The par fours are slightly better, featuring some bends that require thought about the placement of the tee shots.
Conditions on the day I visited were not good.Fairways were alternately patchy, soggy, and haphazardly mown. The greens had taken a beating.
I don’t often say this about Michigan courses, but Dearborn Hills is not a good value for the money. As of this writing, the price was $18 walking and $26 riding. That’s a lot for a short and relatively uninteresting course with maintenance problems.