McGuire’s Resort, Cadillac, MI
Teacher’s Comments: Pleasant
Evergreen (formerlyMcGuire) Resort’s Spruce Course is exactly what a resort course ought to be: not terribly difficult, pleasant to look at, with a couple of memorable holes. If you’re organizing a golf outing in Michigan, McGuire’s is worth a look. In addition to the 18 hole Spruce, there’s a nine hole course, 120 rooms on site, a pool, fitness center, jacuzzi, sauna, two restaurants, bar and other amenities.
The topography of Evergreen’s Spruce is gently rolling, with some small elevation changes. For fear of a storm, I rode a cart, but think that the course is eminently walkable.
Most of the holes on the front nine are lined by forest, but the fairways are wide enough that they don’t really come into play. This also is the nine with the most significant elevation changes.
The back nine plays on more level ground, often near marsh. It has a very old school feel, with holes running in parallel. Wildly wayward shots are likely to end up in an adjacent fairway instead of the woods.
The routing is somewhat confusing, and a lack of signage had me turned around at a couple of points. After the second hole, I ended up on the adjacent nine hole Norway course, and had to ask a groundskeeper to get me back on track. Later, at the turn, I made a wrong turn and ended up lost again. The routing also is such that the front nine does not return to the clubhouse, but there is a nice halfway house at the turn.
Green fronts on all sides are open, permitting a variety of shots. Bunkers tended to be shallow and forgiving.
From the back tees, Eevergreen’s Spruce measures a modest 6,438 and plays to a 71.2/131. The middle tees come in at 6,094 and a 69.6/125. I don’t think it played as difficult as that. Bogey golfers should have a good time here, and may even score a personal best.
Conditions on the day I played were ok. You won’t mistake Evergreen for a top-end course, but the fairways were grown in, and the greens relatively smooth. Impressively, after a steady all-night rain that continued with a morning drizzle, the course was very much in playable shape.
I really do think that big groups should consider Evergreen Resort. The course is on-site, so there is just a short walk from room to clubhouse. The course is friendly enough that rounds won’t turn into six hour marathons. A pre-scheduled group could easily get in 27 holes in a day if it play the 18 hole Spruce and the 9 hole Norway. Thirty six is not out of the question with morning and afternoon rounds. There’s also plenty to eat and drink after hours, with a relaxing soak in the Jacuzzi, sauna and pool.
I would definitely be willing to play this one again.