Friday, 15 October 2010

Campsie GC - course no 357

I played this hilly moorland course on the slopes of the Campsie Hills just north of Glasgow on 15 October 2010, fresh from a narrow win in the Howard Leedale Trophy at my home club, which saw my handicap cut by 0.6 to 9.8, so I've been playing pretty well recently. Campsie is a short 18 hole course measuring only 5173 yards, par 70, from the yellow tees. The par 4 holes range from 230 yards to 402 yards and the 2 par 5's are only 470 and 448 yards long. The ground was pretty wet underfoot and there was no run, so the course played longer than I'd expected. Even so, the short irons really come into play here. What the Campsie course lacks in length is compensated by the tricky small greens and the sometimes steep hills. For example, this is the 8th, the shortest of the par 4's. The hole is only 230 yards but is steeply uphill. I'd a short sand iron left for my second, but the green is tiny and like most of the holes, slopes down to the valley floor. I managed the par OK, just missing the right of the 2 bunkers. I'm not sure whether any of the bunkers were under repair in preparation for winter, but none of them had been raked recently and there was no sand in them. Thankfully, I only found one on the way round as these looked to be serious hazards.

I liked the 13th, a short 255 yard uphill par 4, played to a fairway split into several small hillocks, with a steeply sloping plateau green. This is the view to the green from my tee shot. I'd gone out in 41, 5 strokes over par, and was playing pretty well on the back 9 until the 15th, a tricky uphill par 4 with a fairway sloping steeply from left to right. I found a bunker to the right of the green and was lucky to escape with a bogey. The 15th green is just about the highest point on the course, so it was a surprise to find the 16th tee was a good par 5 away, back down the hill. The 16th is an easy par 5 if you hit the ball straight (which I did!).

Best hole at Campsie is probably the 17th, as shown here. This is a 159 yard par 3, steeply downhill and requiring absolute accuracy off the tee to avoid the trees and a nasty bunker guarding the left of the green. I was pin high with my 5 iron and only just missed the birdie putt (uphill for once!) I did the back 9 in 38 for a total of 79, 1 under the net par. I'd enjoyed the round, but I preferred some of the other nearby courses.

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