Michigan’s Top Twenty Public Courses – The 2015 GolfBlogger List

Arcadia Bluffs at Sunset
Arcadia Bluffs, Arcadia, Michigan

Here is The GolfBlogger’s Top 20 Michigan Golf Courses list, chosen from the more than 125 Michigan courses I’ve played and reviewed for the blog. Unlike the big name magazine lists, I can honestly say that I’ve played every course on this list, and most of them more than once. The list includes only public access courses. Clicking on the link will take you to the course review.

  1.  Forest Dunes, Roscommon, Michigan
  2. Arcadia Bluffs, Arcadia, Michigan
  3. Tullymore, Stanwood, Michigan
  4. Greywalls, Marquette, Michigan
  5. Black Lake, Onaway, Michigan
  6. Shepherd’s Hollow, Clarkston, Michigan
  7. Treetops Fazio, Gaylord, Michigan
  8. Elk Ridge, Atlanta, Michigan
  9. Bedford Valley, Augusta, Michigan
  10. Pilgrim’s Run, Pierson, Michigan
  11. Black Forest, Gaylord, Michigan
  12. Timberstone, Iron Mountain, Michigan
  13. Sweetgrass, Harris, Michigan
  14. Bay Harbor, Petosky, Michigan
  15. Lyon Oaks, Wixom, Michigan
  16. Dunmaglas, Charlevoix, Michigan
  17. Moose Ridge, South Lyon, Michigan
  18. The Fortress, Frankenmuth, Michigan
  19. Stonehedge South, Augusta, Michigan
  20. The Medalist, Marshall, Michigan

Plus two you probably can play. I’ve never had any trouble getting at tee time at either of these, although they are ostensibly not public courses.

Forest Akers West, East Lansing, Michigan

University of Michigan Golf Course, Ann Arbor, Michigan

It was very difficult for me to rank order these. I think there is an argument for any of the first five to occupy the top position. The next five were no easier. In the end, I ranked the course by my eagerness to play them again. I would play any of the top five again at any point, and would make a special effort to get there.

I also tried to include some geographic diversity on the list. Still, I ended up with twice as many Northern Michigan courses as not.

  • West Michigan: Arcadia Bluffs, Tullymore, Pilgrim’s Run
  • Northern Michigan: Forest Dunes, Greywalls, Black Lake, Treetops Fazio, Elk Ridge, Black Forest, Timberstone, Sweetgrass, Bay Harbor, Dunmaglas
  • Southeast Michigan: Shepherd’s Hollow, Lyon Oaks, The Fortress, Moose Ridge
  • Mid Michigan: Bedford Valley, Stonehedge South, The Medalist

I will note that I have also played and rejected for this list a several courses which regularly make the big boys’ Top Public Courses in Michigan courses. My experience with a couple of those courses makes me wonder if anyone from the big media golf publications actually has played the courses in question. If they have, I would suggest that their sample size is too small to realize that those particular courses are middlin’ at best.

Finally, there are a few courses that I have yet to finish reviews for, and that may very well end up on this list.

 

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