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Gull Lake View / Stoatin Brae


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Looking for some recommendations. Planning a trip out there to GLV late summer. Definitely going to play Stoatin Brae, but I am not sure familiar with any of the other courses. Anyone familiar with the other 5 courses and have any recommendations on which ones to play? I saw another thread, and it looked like there are some locals on here that might have some insight. I have 2 low handicappers and 2 High handicappers in the group if that makes any difference based on how tough any of the courses play. Thanks in advance.

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Can't go wrong with North, South, or Bedford. Definitely pass on East and West though in my opinion.

FYI Kitchen House has 2 new restaurants across from GLV now. One is open and one will be soon. The one that’s open is called Chicken House (it’s the old Ice House Ice Cream Shop) and they’re serving f

I can't remember for the life of me which ones I played, but I'm heading up there this June 25 with 20 guys and we are playing GLVE on Thursday for our arrival round because we are staying at the villas. Playing Stoatin and GLVW on Friday, and both Stonehedges on Saturday at the recommendation of the employee setting up my visit. We range from 3 to 35 handicap so it will get interesting. Sorry I can't provide better feedback on which ones you should play, unless you aren't scheduling it until late. I was more so sharing in case you were going to be up there the same time.

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I would skip GLVE and play Stonehenge South or North on opening day. Both of those are better than the GLV courses if you don’t mind a repeat. Play Bedford before Stoatin instead of GLVW.

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Can't go wrong with North, South, or Bedford. Definitely pass on East and West though in my opinion.

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I played there last summer and I thought Stoatin Brae was great. I loved getting to play a somewhat Links style course when all I'm used to is Parkland style around Chicagoland. Other than that I was underwhelmed by the other courses. Nothing really wrong with them but certainly nothing special. I would not be able to tell you one from the next. I want to say we played 3 or 4 other ones there.

The one thing that bothered me the most was there was no decent food or drink options near the villas and it's not like you want to stay home and dine in because they are glorified dorm rooms. A place that hosts that many people every year needs to have some better options IMO. One night we went into Kalamazoo and that was good but it is 20 minutes away. The next night we walked to some dilapidated house that had been converted into a bar and it was terrifying.

On the plus side it is very affordable.

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The Kitchen House or the Richland Pub are both solid and only a few minutes away.

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20* Callaway XR Pro Hybrid
Mizuno JPX 921 Forged w/ Steelfiber 110
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Putter: Stoke Lab Double Wide Arm Lock

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FYI Kitchen House has 2 new restaurants across from GLV now. One is open and one will be soon. The one that’s open is called Chicken House (it’s the old Ice House Ice Cream Shop) and they’re serving fried chicken, burgers, and ice cream. It’s excellent btw, top notch local fair. The South Kitchen is still under construction but should be done soon. This should provide some other sources of great food within walking distance of the GLV Villas.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Has anyone played SB this season? Looking for a course review

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They had an email last week for 4th of July still. I would call...seems like they have plenty of open weekends and are hurting to fill the villas based on that email.

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I played there last week. The course was in great shape for a public course, some hard spots around. The greens were fantastic. The little putting green is a lot slower than the course, looks like a green I'd put in my backyard.

That was my second time playing it and after a week full of private golf, my group really like this course a ton.

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Titleist TS3 15 deg VA Composites Vylyn 75 Four
Titleist 818 23 deg VA Composites Slay 85 Four

Miura PI-501 5 iron Steelfiber 95 stiff

Miura CB-301 6-7 Steelfiber 95 still

Miura MC-501 8-pw Steelfiber 95 stiff
Miura HB 50 deg S400

PXG 56 Milled 56/ ZULU 60 deg S400

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Lol, I really enjoyed the East. When I played Bedford the conditions sucked and pace was the worst I have ever experienced. That being said I only played Bedford one time and it was a bad experience. With the course conditions being better I can see how people like the course though. Stoatin Brae obviously far separates itself from other GL courses. The other 4 are awesome and have played many times.

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Sorry to hear about your experience at Bedford; sadly I can easily believe that story. Bedford is unfortunately the worse “policed” out of all of them. You’ll regularly get stuck behind 5-somes of members that won’t let you through. It’s so frustrating because it’s actually a phenomenal course, and the conditioning right now is fantastic. Many championships have been held there for good reason, it’s a monster from the tips and a fun course. Wish the rangers were more active about the pacing though.

I actually have the East as dead last strictly based on conditions. It’s a fun and weird layout but the greens are always the worst out of all 6 courses.

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Numbered by hole:

1. If you can hit a driver 300, hit it on hole 1. Straight down the fairway. Otherwise just hit a hybrid. Easy hole. Don't try a links-style bump and run on your approach because the fairway will likely be too shaggy and it won't roll out. This green always seems to be fast as hell so hit your approach super high and stick it.

2. Play it left of the hole, always. Doesn't matter where the pin is, everything funnels right and if you're long you'll ride the hill and go right anyway.

3. Hit your approach high. Tough green to hold. The fairway connects with another hole on the right, so if you’re going to miss your tee shot then aiming right is the safer play, but beware there’s a small patch of long grass in the middle of the 2 fairways that will eat your ball if you happen to hit it.

4. Just hit it down the fairway. If you’re going to miss then miss right off the tee, there’s not much trouble even if you go super far right (again the fairways connect)

5. Play tee shot directly over the right side of the bunker on the left, this will leave you in perfect position for your approach.

6. If you're a long hitter, play to the right side of the fairway if you want to be home in 2. Tough approach to the green otherwise. Easily reachable to big hitters tho, and probably the easiest eagle on the course. This green will most likely be in the worst shape out of all of them on the course because of the shade.

7. Little more uphill than it looks. Range finder will probably tell you it's around 200yrds, but play for a little more. The miss is to the right because left side of the green has a massive false front/slope and a bunker.

8. Drive the green lol. Green has a serious shelf, try not to be short and left (depends on where the pin is obviously) But seriously driver is the play, the fairway is super wide past the bunker. This green is a bear, tonight to hold any approach when the course is dry. Just aim for the middle of the green and don’t get cute.

9. Easy par 5, just keep the ball in the middle. Worth driving ahead before your 2nd shot to see where to aim. Best approach to the green is always on the left side because the ball will likely funnel down and to the right, plus there’s bunkers on the right.

10. Fun driver hole, but not necessary at all. Short and simple. Green slopes towards the tee so a shorter approach shot will always leave an uphill putt. 

11. Super jacked up green. Depending on where the pin is, 3 putts are likely. Don't really have any advice because it really depends on where the stick is, but left tends to be the safer play. 

12. The starters will tell you to aim your tee shot at the electrical tower...DO NOT LISTEN TO THEM. Terrible advice. Aim left side of fairway. There’s 2 dead trees in the woods that you can see from the tee box, aim at those trees for a perfect drive. If you're a big hitter, I've seen people chipping for their approach, but if you're aimed at at the tower your flirting with heather. Not worth it.

13. Aim your tee shot over the right side of the bunkers on the left. Everything funnels to the right. You don't want to be directly over the bunkers, but slightly over the right side is okay. Super uphill approach and everything left of the green is dead. You’re approach can be a bit wild and still turn out ok, the green is surrounded by a giant “fish bowl”. 

14. Enjoy the only tree on the course! No advice, simple short par 3, but don’t be short because on firm days the false front will kill you.

15. Drives seem to go way farther than you'd think on this hole, even though it looks uphill. Driving the green from the Black Tees and entirely doable on firm days. This is the only Par 4 on the course that I’ve eagled!

16. Great chance for an eagle. I like to play to the left side off the fairway, but I don't think it matters. If your driver is wild then aim to the right of the center bunker because the 2 fairways connect and it’s safer (but it makes for a tougher approach).

17. Club up, because short and left is dead. You'll roll into the heather. I’ve been in every bunker on this hole, depending on the wind it can be tougher than it looks. 

18. Super boring finishing hole. Just play it down the middle. It's a tiered green, but most of them are so just pay attention to where the flag is.

Have fun, and don't miss the fairway. The bees are bad in the heather.

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Played Stoatin on Monday and the course was in really good shape. I'm a big fan of the layout. Greens were in decent shape, but were shaggy and slow!

We got stuck behind 2 groups of resort guests that were absolutely horrible at golf. They would hit their balls into the heather and then look for it for five minutes and hit it in the more heather. At hole 10 they stopped at the halfway house and we asked to play through. They said no because they were part of an outing. They didn't seem like an outing so we called the proshop and they said they lied and that they were just 2 groups from the resort. It took us over 5 hours to finish the round. Called and talked to the pro the next day and he apologized and is going to refund our greens fees. Nice move by them.

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