Reddeman Farms Golf Course
Teacher’s Comments: A very good value. If you’re looking for a golf home, this could be it.
Update: The clubhouse burned down in 2017 and the course has not reopened.
Reddeman Farms is one of the best values in golf in the Ann Arbor area. The course is interesting, but friendly. Fairway conditions are good and the greens are in terrific shape. And best of all is the price. I played 18 walking on a weekday morning for just $19. And I had a lot of fun.
The course is built on a former dairy farm (as so many in the area seem to be) and seems quite far away from the hustle of nearby Ann Arbor and surrounding suburbs (although it is just eight miles west). There’s no housing development here, and the only the faintest sounds of automobiles can be heard. It’s a very peaceful place where you can forget the rest of the world. Appropriately, Reddeman lies at the end of a dirt road past aging barns and working fields.
Reddeman Farms offers good length from the whites at 6,228 yards. All of the greens can be reached by a mid-handicapper in regulation At 6.535 from the back tees, it could seemingly be too short for really big hitters, but the course defends itself well with a good mix of water hazards, bunkers and tight driving holes. I can’t imagine anyone who isn’t on the PGA Tour money list who can reach and hold the green on 18 in two.
But the course’s biggest defense is it’s greens. I three putted more on these greens in one round than I had in the previous dozen. There are a lot of very subtle breaks on these greens.
The front nine is, I think, the easier track. All of the holes are wide open, giving a chance for recovery from stray tee shots. The toughest are the par 4 eighth and the par 5 ninth.
The 8th hole bends slightly to the right, with a pond running nearly the entire length on the right. To the left, a treeline should punish any hookers. From tee to green, it’s a tight hole—and to my eyes looks tighter than it is. The water is pretty intimidating.
The ninth (photo second from top) is one of two holes (the other is the 18th) where your shot at the green is going to require a carry over water. The hole is 413 from the whites, so even a good tee shot is going to leave you 140+ to the hole. And every bit of that needs to be carry. There is maybe 10 yards of rough between the water’s edge and the green.
On the back nine, holes 14 through 17 cut through woodlands, tightening things up considerably. Of these, the 14th (photo third from top) is the best—a 331 yard par 4 with a slight bend to the right. Large trees on the right side block a straight line to the green, so the tee shot must hug the left side of the fairway.
The eighteenth (fourth from top, on right) can probably be considered the course’s “signature hole.” It’s a 491 yard (from the whites; 507 from the blues) par 5 where the approach shot requires a carry over water. I can’t see anyone making this green in two who isn’t on the PGA Tour’s money list. Like the ninth, the green is tight against the water. Even a monster 300 yard drive leaves 200+ yards to the green. Carrying 200 yards, and then sticking the green would be very tough indeed.
Given that, after your drive, the question is “how far to the water’s edge” for a lay up shot.
Course conditions on the day I visited were pretty good. There were no patchy or giant weedy spots on the fairways, although a couple of areas of the fairways had been overrun with ant hills. The greens were in very good shape, with no patches, brown spots or weeds. Some of the tee boxes were a little rough, though.
Off the course, the clubhouse is wonderful. There’s a full restaurant, a bar and the course advertises banquet and special events facilities. The pro shop is very well stocked.
The course also has a driving range, and a nice practice green.
The Reddeman Farms Golf Course Review was first publsihed June 27, 2006
Photos of Reddeman Farms Golf Course follow: