Thurlestone G C
Weather & Course Condition
Played this course on a beautiful sunny day with a light wind coming off the sea, when the sun went behind the clouds the temperature felt a little chilly but soon warmed up when it came back out, the wind did increase and on the last couple of holes was quite strong. As you would expect from any course with the history this one has the course was in great condition and is quite unique with the out nine running along the coast line.
My only downside about this visit is not of the club but the access to it, the road into Thurlestone can be a nightmare especially during the holiday season and is not a road I would want to travel too much. The car park is shared with the holidaymakers but visitors to the club do not have to pay. The club house is unique in it’s own way, lovely bar and lounge and my bacon roll was perfect. Behind the clubhouse is the pro shop which is well equipped and I found a number of bargains there to boot. The course is well groomed and open, wonderful course to play but a challenge depending on the elements.
All yardage is from the yellow tee’s
Hole 1 – Par 4 – 252yds
A short par 4 to start with, normally you tee off close to the pro shop past the clubhouse (which is protected by netting) over a small lane to a open fairway, the green is drivable but on the day of my visit the tee had been moved forward to the greenside of the lane making the hole a par 3. As a par 4 most players will safely hit the wide fairway for those who go for it bunkers await around the green and they are used often. The green is large and smooth and a birdie on the 1st is more than possible.
Hole 2 – Par 4 – 316yds
To the left of the tee you will look out to sea and over the beach which is popular with holiday makers, your drive crosses the bridleway and small crater to a uphill wide fairway which turns left to the green. For the approach shot to the green there is a marker post at the rear of the green to help you but club selection is difficult as it appeared to me that it was closer than it actually was and as such I was well short. The green is large and once on it a 2 putt should be the norm.
Hole 3 – Par 3 – 157yds
The first par 3 and it can be a real tester, I have played this course in strong winds and actually played a driver here aiming out to sea and still ended up short of the green however on this day the winds were light and a 3 wood put me just off the green at the back, anything too strong will be in long rough and too far left runs the risk of being out of bounds or lost. A reasonable tee shot that is a little right of the green is a good result leaving a pitch into the large green and a par still on the cards.
Hole 4 – Par 4 – 349yds
A nice wide fairway awaits you on this hole and with any wind behind you a long drive could be on the cards. The green is not visible but you may be able to just see the flag but there is a marker post to aim for. Bunker shots await around the green for your approach shot and there is heavy rough to the right which I visited and I know others have as I found half a dozen balls as well as my own.
Hole 5 – Par 3 – 212yds
A long par 3 which can be even longer on a day with strong winds and that is the only difficulty on this hole, I had light wind and ended up short left with a 3 wood but as the green is large a simple pitch & putt can still give you a par.
Hole 6 – Par 3 – 139yds
How many courses do you know that have two par 3’s together, this one is the opposite of the 5th, with any wind behind you and heavy rough all around and a green that is surrounded by bunkers this one is a challenge. If you get on the green in one then take a bow, end up in the bunkers and that’s a result, in the heavy rough then start hoping for a miracle to save par. A really testing hole this one not as easy as it looks.
Hole 7 – Par 4 – 337yds.
From the raised tee the hole drops down before you then slightly rises upto the green, there is some rough to carry but as it is downhill it should not be an issue, if you stray too far left out of bounds await and there are a couple of bunkers on the right side of the fairway awaiting the slightly pushed shot. The approach shot is like the second hole, deceiving as it looks nearer than it is so good club selection is required but should you play short it will still leave you with a easy pitch shot onto the green.
Hole 8 - Par 4 - 419yds
A long par 4 with a blind drive uphill so aim for the marker post. Should you get past the post you will see the green in the distance and it will be a good second to reach it, for most of us it will be short leaving a pitch to the green, keeping to the right on this hole is the preferred route as heavy rough and OOB awaits all down the left side.
Hole 9 – Par 4 – 394yds
From the tee the green is just visible behind a clump of bushes on the right of the fairway, as the fairway rolls left to right a good draw shot is preferred, sorry forgot myself if I shape a shot it’s a slice or hook that’s not planned so aim will left of the fairway and with luck the ball will remain on the fairway, there are a few fairway bunkers awaiting you. A large green awaits you on your approach with not too many problems except for the bunkers to the left waiting for any pulled shot.
Hole 10 – Par 4 – 423yds
The hardest hole on the course but as you stand on the tee you wonder why, a wide fairway in front of you that turns left to the green in the distance, however once playing it you know why. A good drive to the uphill fairway will still leave a long second to the green in the distance, so if you reach the green in two the drinks are on you and for the rest getting on in three is a result. The green has a bank to the right of it and a drop to the left, it is narrow but long no wonder this hole is Stroke Index 1
Hole 11 – Par 4 – 357yds
Another uphill blind tee shot aiming at the markers making sure you keep right is the preferred shot. A reasonable drive should leave the green in range which is protected on the right by a number of bunkers which my playing partner visited all of them. When walking from here to the 12th take in the great view over Bigbury.
Hole 12 – Par 5 – 486
Another uphill tee shot, on top of the hill is the marker post to aim for but for most of us we will end up short of it so will leave a blind for your second, for those who had 3 shredded wheat anything past the post will leave the green in view. For those who only had 2 take a walk to the top to see your line as anything that goes right can be in trouble. The green is large with not too much trouble around so a par is possible.
Hole 13 – Par 3 – 200yds
From the raised tee the green is straight in front and all it needs is the right club selection, yes there are bunkers around but if you do end up in them the green is still possible. As it is a straight drive I opted for my 3 wood as I can hit that straight, that is until now where it went off to the right into a narrow strip of heavy rough that runs between this hole and the 14th, many a ball has remained undiscovered in here but luck was on my side.
Hole 14 – Par 5 – 502yds
A straight level par 5 with a wide fairway what problems can there be, well firstly there are a lot of bunkers littering the fairway waiting for you and the strip of heavy rough waiting on the right to hide your ball. Avoid all these should leave you a shot into the green which if you are going to miss then miss to the right of it. If you do drop a shot or two here don’t worry I suspect there can be some high scores on this hole in medal and plenty of blobs in stableford match’s.
Hole 15 – Par 5 – 497yds
A much easier par 5 no bunkers to worry about except around the green but the fairway does slope left to right. A good drive up the left of the fairway should leave you on the right of the fairway and for your second a good strike should leave you on the dog leg left and around 100yds to the green. A good drive and second shot can leave you in a position for a birdie.
Hole 16 – Par 4 – 405yds
This is a testing hole with a sharp dog leg right, I am told that big hitters cut the corner with their drives which can leave you near to the green but the risks are huge, ideally drive to the post in the distance of the dog leg which should leave a shot of around 160yds to the green but should you go right on the drive there is a clump of bushes waiting and believe me many a player has gone into these and I am one of them but fortunately for me the ball was playable from in them and I managed to get it out in one. The large green awaits with bunkers to the left of it and a drop down to the right.
Hole 17 - Par 3 – 142yds
After a short walk you come to the 17th tee then looking at the green which is surrounded completely by bunkers and if like us straight into a strong wind the words `which ******** club do I need’. The group I played with used a variety of different clubs from 5 iron to driver, I selected a rescue wood and managed to get on the green which even though it is large nobody else did with the player who used his driver coming up short! What a hole to have at the end of your round, this one will test you to the full.
Hole 18 – Par 5/4 – 485/394yds
Depending on where you are teeing from will dictate if it’s a par 4 or 5, on this day it was a par 4 which brought into play the bunkers that are both left and right of the fairway of which I eventually visited. Should you end up on the fairway a long uphill shot is left to the green which is reachable with a good second when it’s playing as a par 4. Another large green awaits with no problems around it, the only problem left is finding your way back to the clubhouse from the green, if you have not been here before the clubhouse is not visible due to bushes even though you are only 75yds from it and there is a practise area by you.