Playing Elk Rapids Golf Club

Elk Rapids Golf Club Sixth Hole
A view of the sixth green at Elk Rapids Golf Club.

Playing Elk Rapids Golf Club

I recently played a round at Elk Rapids Golf Club in Elk Rapids, Michigan.

A nine-hole 1924 Donald Ross design, Elk Rapids is so good that I immediately went around again. Only lack of sunlight kept me from playing 27.

It is simply the best nine-hole course I have ever played.

Routed along the shores of the beautiful nine-mile long Elk Lake, the course is beautiful and tantalizing.

The holes seem straightforward, but I found the greens are often further away — or closer — than they appear, with false fronts and plateaued vistas. Fairway bunkers with high backs tufted with grasses are well positioned to catch the unwary.

“I did not see that coming” was a repeated thought.

Elk Rapids Golf Club fourth hole
A view of the fourth green at Elk Rapids Golf Club.

I don’t know how much of the original Ross exists. I asked in the pro shop, but the vague replies told me that they were either unable or unwilling to answer. It is likely that — as with so many older courses — it has evolved over time, and may even have had some deliberate work done.

In any case, Elk Rapids feels right. It just screams “classic.”

I’ll have a full review and photo tour at some point in the future.

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