Thursday, August 10, 2017

Day Two: The Red Loop and Forest Dunes – the Whites arrival

Wake up refreshed and ready to play the Red Loop and Forest Dunes ( ).
Breakfast isn’t until 6:30 and pro shop not open until 7:00 and our tee time is 8:05 am (first tee time)

Some stats about Forest Dunes and the Loop:
  •         Best New Public Course 2016 – Golf Digest
  •         Development of the Year – Golf Inc. Magazine
  •        Best New Course You Can Play 2016 – Golf Magazine
  •         Top Course You Can Play in Michigan (#4) – Golf Week

Breakfast buffet opens and it’s pretty damn good. Try the French toast (with syrup and bacon, of course). 

Morning on the patio of Forest Dunes

Breakfast buffet at Forest Dunes
Off to warm up on their range (they have a nice chipping area and are building a putting course next to it, which will be lit. Opening next year. Adds more to do in an area that is in the middle of nowhere (I know I already said it, but there you go again).

We using the Caddie Program today with double baggers. Paul and I have one caddy. Pete and Tom another. We get Jason. They get Scott. Off we go. Off we go down the first hole (which was 18 last night when we played it – and you really can’t tell you were there since the big waste area that is now in play wasn’t on the Black and you didn’t really even think about it). And the elevation seems completely different. It’s going to be a great day for a walk (they say about seven miles). Scott figures me and Paul out pretty quickly and it makes a HUGE difference to have a caddy help on club selection and reading these slopping greens.  I probably would have been long or short, or left or right most of the day (well, that still happens regardless of having a caddy, but you get the point). Pete’s playing great and is in a good mood. Tom’s playing well (usually does). Paul and I are struggling a bit, but all is good. The beverage cart girl is out (well, parked in a convenient area for us). A walk, golf, company and beer.

No, I don't have one of these...

I “think” I like the Red Loop better than the Black Loop. I don’t know if it’s the caddies, or not. Scott says most prefer the Red. It does seem like there are more bunkers into play, but maybe not. But, it’s an amazing track of land for this reversible course. Really wish American hadn’t messed up and we could have experienced it in its full Black and full Red glory. I’m glad the wind wasn’t really blowing because it could turn this course into a beast. There are some trees on the property, but it’s pretty exposed. Getting into the gorse is tough to get out of (and tough to find). The fairways are still young and when they fill in, will be as nice as the fairways at Forest Dunes. The greens are firm and fast and if you’re on the wrong side, you’re off the green. Scott and Jason think we’re pretty speedy and fun to play with (they may say that to everyone).

Our Red Loop experience ends and we have lunch before our 1:30 pm tee time at the Dunes. Tom and I have played multiple times. Pete and Paul only once.

Obligatory picture at the entrance.

This won't fit in my bag...

Note: the only thing we wish they could fix are the gnat things on all of the courses. According to my blog last time, if you raise your club over your head, they’ll go up there. It seems to work, but you look pretty silly. I just feel like Pig Pen with a swarm of flies.

Forest Dunes is also pretty special and ranked pretty high nationally. If I could only play one round at Forest Dunes, now it’d be tough for me to decide which I’d play.

We finish up at Forest Dunes and pack up and head out to Boyne, with a stop at a grocery store for coffee and Diet Verners for me, and Arby’s drive through. Need to get to the Highlands to check in and wait for Mark and Heather to arrive (they were playing the Wolverine at Grand Traverse Resort before heading North).

Check in without incident -- and are staying in the same condo we stayed in at the Highlands last time (no, not the condo that Daigle had his iPhone incident with the wall). 
See this wall? Daigle barely missed a similar window and the TV when using his swing speed app on his iPhone (and it slipped).
Paul on the patio with his Clamato and Coors Light.

Unpack and then head to the resort bar to wait on Heather and Mark to arrive. They do. Beer and then bed. Time for Boyne golf to begin with the newbies.

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