Maple Brook Golf Course Review
Maple Brook Golf Course
Teacher’s Comments: A classic nine-hole course with a twist
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Maple Brook is a Tom Bendelow design that dates to 1926. The Board of Directors paid Bendelow $250 plus $27.50 in travel expenses. For most of its life, the nine-hole layout was the Charlotte Country Club. The venerable course was purchased in 2013 and re-named Maple Brook.
As one would expect from a nearly-hundred-year-old course, Maple Brook is a parklands layout, with back-and-forth tree-lined fairways. Six of the holes have meaningful elevation changes. A creek runs through the clubhouse side, affecting four holes.
The “twist” for Maple Brook is that it has a second set of tees for each of the nine holes. That makes it possible to play a full eighteen and have a different look the second time around. The alternate tees, which were installed in 2019, are well executed, creating different angles and in a couple of cases, significantly longer or shorter holes. It is really well done.
My favorite hole was the par 4 fourth/thirteenth. The hole is a long downhill ride, curving slightly to the right. As the fourth, it is a 375 yard par 4. As the thirteenth, it’s a 466 yard par five.
The green is slightly elevated, with fall-offs on the edges.
Behind the green was a trench bunker of the sort I have seen at several Tom Bendelow
Another hole that I really enjoyed was the par 4 second/eleventh. The hole rises from the tee to a crest, all the while bending left. From the crest, the approach is downhill to a green set against a hill.
When played twice, Maple Brook stretches to 6, 127 yards with a par of 72.
|Yellow/Yellow Alt||4, 994||112||65.3|
|Red/Red Alt||4, 825||110||64.7|
One of the most striking changes with the alternate tee is on the seventh/sixteenth. As the seventh, it’s a 521 yard par 5 with a manageable approach shot over a creek. As the sixteenth, it’s a 276 yard par 4 that turns into a risk-reward hole. It is conceivable that a good tee shot could carry the green. Or it could end up in the creek. From the Yellow tees, the hole is just 219 yards long.
Conditions on the day I played were pretty good. I ran into a course employee who told me that they had been working with turfgrass specialists from Michigan State to keep everything in top shape. Good call. It was working for the most part. There were a few bare areas in the fairways, but as a whole, there was nothing that lessened my enjoyment of the course.
I thoroughly enjoyed my round at Maple Brook. If you’re a fan of classic courses, I recommend a trip to play.
The Maple Brook Golf Course Review was first published on GolfBlogger.Com on February 9, 2023 from notes and photos taken on a round played in the summer of 2023. For all of GolfBlogger’s Michigan golf course reviews, follow the link.
A photo tour of Maple Brook Golf Course follows: