Walking Sand Valley & Mammoth Dunes

I’m playing Sand Valley and Mammoth Dunes back to back in a couple weeks. I’m also playing back to back rounds the day before we get to Sand Valley. We will be riding carts for the 2 rounds the day before SV but we are wondering how grueling it’ll be at SV and MD since those are walking only courses.



For those of you that have played Sand Valley and/or Mammoth Dunes...do you recommend a caddie from a physical exertion point of view? Does a caddie save significant physical effort compared to a push cart.



I get that SV and MD are destination courses and that walking is the optimal way to enjoy them, however, I’m concerned about playing 4 rounds in 2 days and walking the final 2 on hilly courses.

Comments

  • meaks17meaks17 Twin Cities (Imported from Detroit)Members Posts: 284 ✭✭✭✭
    It really depends on what sort of shape you're in. If you normally walk and don't have an issue walking 36 I think you'll be fine. No problems for me with a push cart but I only played 18 in a day there.
  • geochitowngeochitown Members Posts: 1,831 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    I had a buddy play there last year, and he commented on the arduous nature of the walk there.



    I'm not saying it's a death march, and I haven't been there, but most questions like this that I've seen on-line inquiring about the difficulty are brushed off with a "no problem if you normally walk."



    I think there is a lot of elevation change, so if you normally walk a course with lots of elevation change, then it's probably fine, but if you don't, get a second, or third opinion.



    I've heard the push carts can be tough on hills, so either carry a light bag, or consider hiring a caddy.
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  • TK3TK3 TK3 Members Posts: 234 ✭✭✭
    Not sure about MD and SV, but if the courses are anything like Erin Hills (and the might be since they are only about 150 miles apart in Wisconsin), it will be arduous to say the least.



    Erin Hills was a BEAST to walk - I felt sorry for the caddies. 36 would have been horrible - not only physically, but my game would have suffered terribly from being too tired to swing.



    Either way - you will be playing a couple of awesome courses. Please leave us a couple of reviews after you've recovered image/busted_cop.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':busted_cop:' />
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  • Dr.FrankenputzDr.Frankenputz Members Posts: 753 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I’m 40 and in “ok” shape, like to walk with a push cart or will carry a half set on occasion. Haven’t played mammoth but have played SV twice.

    If you’re in good shape I think you’re fine either way. If I were doing 2 rounds in 1 day I’d want a caddy. I don’t think I’d have a problem pushing 18 on those courses back to back days, but pushing 36 in 1 day might wipe me out.
  • jsheljshel Members Posts: 646 ✭✭✭✭✭
    It isn't an impossible walk, but it certainly isn't an easy walk.



    I think a caddie for at least one of the rounds (and maybe one of the rounds each day) would be helpful. It would certainly save you some wear and tear.
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  • Back9Back9 ClubWRX Posts: 696 ClubWRX
    I agree, I would caddy it for at least the afternoon round.
  • PhreddyPhreddy Members Posts: 639 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I've played all of the above. I agree that Erin is a beastly walk, particularly if it is hot and humid. There is no shade and the green to the next tee are almost all climbs. I didn't think SV and MD were particularly difficult walks at all. If I am playing a premium course for the first time I always take a caddy. I want as much local knowledge as I can get for lines off the tee. I think at SV and MD you would be well served to have a caddy if for no other reason than to help you navigate your round. Yes, the fairways are generous, but there are also elements of risk reward that are not necessarily obvious until you've played it.



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  • PuttCurseRepeatPuttCurseRepeat It's a ball mark repair tool. Use it! Members Posts: 862 ✭✭✭✭✭
    What is more tiring, walking while carrying a lighter bag, or pulling the same bag in a hand cart? I would think on a flat course, the latter would better but on a course with even modest elevation changes, such as I would characterize SV, I think carrying might be better than pulling. Whenever I rent a hand cart/trolley, I end up as tired, or more tired, as I would have if I had just carried my bag.
  • portlandportland Members Posts: 1,056 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    It’s not a bad walk. That said, it you are concerned, get a junior caddie for cheap (teenage kid) and he will carry your bag. FYI - this level of caddie has little to no course knowledge.
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  • jwellefson1jwellefson1 Members Posts: 206 ✭✭✭
    If Mammoth Dunes is anything like the Castle Course (another McLay Kidd design) then it will be a really tough walk on some holes. Definitely wish I either had a caddie or carried rather than a push cart. I definitely want to get out to Sand Valley though!
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  • nowitski41nowitski41 Members Posts: 357
    Played SV and MD in one day. Walked 36 with a junior caddie. He was a 14 year old kid that tried really hard. It was a good day.



    I have knee issues so I was concerned with the walk but I put on a knee brace on each knee and the walk wasn’t that bad. I started feeling it on the final 9 holes but easily made it through the round.



    Sand Valley was underwhelming and the course was not in good shape. Lots of sand in the fairways and greens. All 4 of us were disappointed. Mammoth was much much better. Visually interesting and some fun holes. We paid $170 for SV in the morning. It was a discounted rate bc there were 4 temp greens on the course. Then we got $70 for the afternoon Mammoth Round which was a surprise bc when I call d beforehand they said that the replay rate was only good on the same course and that mammoth would be the full $170(preview rate bc that course doesn’t officially open until next month). All in all a good experience but would not go back for the price.
  • sths31sths31 Members Posts: 252 ✭✭
    nowitski41 wrote:


    Played SV and MD in one day. Walked 36 with a junior caddie. He was a 14 year old kid that tried really hard. It was a good day.



    I have knee issues so I was concerned with the walk but I put on a knee brace on each knee and the walk wasn’t that bad. I started feeling it on the final 9 holes but easily made it through the round.



    Sand Valley was underwhelming and the course was not in good shape. Lots of sand in the fairways and greens. All 4 of us were disappointed. Mammoth was much much better. Visually interesting and some fun holes. We paid $170 for SV in the morning. It was a discounted rate bc there were 4 temp greens on the course. Then we got $70 for the afternoon Mammoth Round which was a surprise bc when I call d beforehand they said that the replay rate was only good on the same course and that mammoth would be the full $170(preview rate bc that course doesn’t officially open until next month). All in all a good experience but would not go back for the price.




    When did you play?
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  • nowitski41nowitski41 Members Posts: 357
    We played yesterday....
  • sths31sths31 Members Posts: 252 ✭✭
    nowitski41 wrote:


    We played yesterday....
    Got it. Thanks for following up.



    When they say temp greens, what exactly does that mean? I've played different variations of "temp" before and everyone's definition is a little different
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  • titleist_christitleist_chris Members Posts: 63 ✭✭
    I would say it is a moderately tough walk just because of the sand terrain that you get caught in at times. If it were all grass it would be an easy walk.
  • nowitski41nowitski41 Members Posts: 357
    The temp greens are shaved down patches of fairway. #1 is a temp green and it is cut 50 yards short of the original green in what used to be a collection area in the fairway to there are healing divots in the greens. I mentioned in the other thread that as soon as you hit a temp green it is an auto two putt. Anyway, back to the original topic.....walking 36 was actually not hard at all. There are definitely some hills and valleys but coming from a guy with knee issues I would say that it is doable for a 45 year old in decent waking shape. If you regularly walk 18 then wasting 36 with a caddie will be no problem at all.
  • ThornbrughThornbrugh Members Posts: 58 ✭✭

    Looking to take my 75 year old father to Sand Valley next May... he walks (w/pull cart) 18 holes on a relatively flat course 4-5 days a week. I have read all of the various opinions above about walking, but I am looking for a comparable frame of reference. Anyone played any of the Bandon Courses and SV and can compare the level of difficulty in say walking Old Mac or Trails vs. SV or Mammoth?

  • Roadking2003Roadking2003 AustinMembers Posts: 5,951 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    @nowitski41 said:
    I’m playing Sand Valley and Mammoth Dunes back to back in a couple weeks. I’m also playing back to back rounds the day before we get to Sand Valley. We will be riding carts for the 2 rounds the day before SV but we are wondering how grueling it’ll be at SV and MD since those are walking only courses.

    For those of you that have played Sand Valley and/or Mammoth Dunes...do you recommend a caddie from a physical exertion point of view? Does a caddie save significant physical effort compared to a push cart.

    I get that SV and MD are destination courses and that walking is the optimal way to enjoy them, however, I’m concerned about playing 4 rounds in 2 days and walking the final 2 on hilly courses.

    Absolutely take a caddie and enjoy the courses. They are not that difficult to walk, but a caddie makes them much more fun.

  • Argonne69Argonne69 Members Posts: 21,932 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

    I walked both courses last Labor Day weekend. I had a junior caddie in the morning at MD, and used a rickshaw (pull cart) in the afternoon on SV. 'Definitely recommend a caddie for at least one round. I wouldn't use a pushcart, as the wheels are generally too small for the sandy areas. They have big wheel rickshaws available. The next time I play the courses I'll likely take a junior caddie for both rounds. I was sucking wind on the back nine of SV.

  • DoubleorQuitsDoubleorQuits Members Posts: 386 ✭✭✭✭

    I walked and carried both courses on the same day last July (2018). Not a bad walk, but from easy. You are pretty exposed to the sun, so plan accordingly if it is a hot and sunny day. Walking through some of the sandy areas slow you down a bit as well, not that I hit into them or anything!

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