Thursday, 4 November 2010

St Fillans GC - course no 360

Polly and I played this 9 hole course to the west of Crieff in Perthshire on 3 November 2010 after our round at nearby Comrie. I suspect we'd just turned up a few weeks too late, as the course had been set for the Winter, with Winter tees and temporary greens. As ever, we can only play the course that has been set by the club, but it was a pity that we had to find our own way around the course, in the absence of any map on the card or hole numbers on the tees and flags. The rain showers and cold wind simply added to the frustration (was it really only 6 miles east and an hour previously that we were playing at Comrie in Autumn sunshine?) St Fillans is a 2760 yards par 34 course, but was playing shorter than that. However, the lamentable signage (one tee per hole, set by a yellow and a red marker, meaning Polly had to play from the same tees as me) gave us no clues on direction or distance. It may of course be that this small club does not attract many visitors in the off-season, but it needs to do a bit more to help casual visitors such as ourselves to enjoy the experience.

That apart, St Fillans is flat, easy walking and a pleasant enough course, once we'd worked out where we were going. There are a couple of decent holes, but the overall impression was pretty underwhelming, despite the excellent views of forests and hills. This is the 4th, a left dog leg 357 yard par 4. My drive left me an 8 iron to the green and a couple of putts gave me an easy par. I thought the best hole on the course was the 5th, a 265 yard par 4 named after the bothy, as shown here, on the left of the fairway. I duffed a short chip on this hole and dropped a shot, but I went round in 38, or 4 over par. Maybe the course plays better in the Summer. If I'm in back the area then I'd give it another try, but I think there are better courses in the area.

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