North Star Golf Course Review
North Star Golf Course
Teachers’ Comments: Short and tight.
The North Star Golf Course is located on the west side of US 127, just south of Ithaca, Michigan. I’ve passed it many times traveling back and forth to “Up North” Michigan, and finally decided to stop to play in the summer of 2020.
North Star is a parklands-and-fields course whose original nine dates to 1965. The second nine was added in 1971.
Challenge and interest on this short, flat course comes from tight fairways, and six doglegs. Water comes into play on five holes.
In some ways, the shortness of the course works to its advantage. North Star is a course where it really does make sense to play an iron, hybrid or fairway metal off the tee on many of the holes. Some are just short. Others are tight enough that a wayward tee shot will completely derail an otherwise gettable hole.
The ninth and eighteen, in particular are tight doglegs, calling for precision off the tee. The 308 yard ninth will call for a couple of irons from most bogey golfers. Eighteen is longer at 397 yards, but still calls for a shot that you know will find the fairway.
My favorite hole was the 348 yard par four 15th. The fairway heads straight out between a row of trees, then hooks right around a pond to the green. A good tee shot hugs the tree line on the left, which minimizes the amount of intervening pond. Depending on the landing, the second will either be a high lob into the green, or possibly a pitch and run.
North Star is a short par 70, measuring just 5, 816 from the back tees, where the rating and slope are 68.1/109. A second set of tees are at 4, 864 and are a 65.9/104. It is going to be too short for the tastes of a lot of golfers.
Conditions on the day I played were adequate. There was green stuff on all the fairways, even if it wasn’t always grass. The greens were in good shape. The whole course could use a tree trimming, though, as there were several places where trees and branches really got in the way of play.
The par three second is the worst offender. It was just weird. I don’t know what to say about a par three where a large tree blocks half the green.
As a habitual early bird, I was first off the tee on the day I played. However, by the time I finished, the parking lot was completely full. North Star is quite obviously a favorite among the locals.
I can’t recommend a special trip to play North Star. However, if 127 is your usual route to the vacationlands of Northern Michigan, I think it might be worthwhile to budget a couple extra hours and give it a try. I had fun on my round, even if it was not what you’d consider a great course.
The North Star Golf Course review was first published February 18, 2021, based on notes and photos taken on a round played September 4, 2020. For all of GolfBlogger’s Michigan Golf Course Reviews, follow the link
A photo tour of North Star follows: