Teacher’s Comments: Fun and Challenging. But a little pricey, slow and no walking is allowed.
Fox Hills in Plymouth, Michigan boasts southeastern Michigan’s most extensive golf facilities. It has 63 holes of golf, two driving ranges, a full service instructional facility, and large banquet and dining rooms. The only thing it really lacks is a big time pro shop.
The 63 holes consist of the Strategic Fox, a wonderful 18 hole par 3; the Classic Fox, with three nines, and the “upscale” Golden Fox.
The Golden Fox is an Arthur Hills design, said to be links style, but in truth mixing prairie, light woods, marsh and water. It measures 6,783 from the back tees, and plays to a 73.6/137. The “white tees” are 6,042 and a 70.1/127.
Fox Hills bills the Golden Fox as its “upscale” course, and I would agree with the assessment, especially when compared the adjacent Fox Classic. Conditions on the several times I have played the course have always been top notch, even during the dog days of summer.
The Golden Fox can be a tough course for the bogey golfer, and even for the single digit handicapper, as the rating (73) attests. There are numerous natural areas—tall grasses, shrubs, marsh and trees—to catch the unwary and rapidly drive up scores. No Arthur Hills trickery here; the natural topography keeps the player honest.
Greens also present a puzzle. I have found them fast and often deceptive. Tough mounding around many of the greens makes missing the green a severe penalty.
Between the natural areas and the mounding, players need to plan their strategy carefully on each hole. Conservative players will often score the best on this layout. I find the thought process required to work around the course quite fun.
One downside to the difficulty of the course is that play is quite slow. During peak hours, I think you can probably expect a five-and-a-half to six hour round. The difficulty, especially as players use the wrong tees, makes it slow.
Another downside: they don’t allow walking. This is a shame because the course is eminently walkable.
Greens fees at the Golden Fox are in the fifty dollar range. That’s probably on the high side for courses in the area, but also likely befits the upscale conditions.
In all, I think this is a must-play course in Southeastern Michigan.