Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Falkirk GC Par 3 Course - Course no 649

When I played the main course here on 5 May 2010 (see Blog Entry 290) I'd noticed that when walking between the 5th green and the 6th tee there appeared to be a short par 3 course.  I didn't have time to investigate further so playing this little course had been on my to do list for over 4 years.  Polly and I played the main Falkirk GC course on 22 July 2014 and the idea was that I'd play the Par 3 course and time permitting, go on to play a 9 hole par 3 course in Callendar Park on the other side of Falkirk.  Polly hadn't played at Falkirk GC before (known locally as Carmuirs) but I'd really enjoyed the course In May 2010, so we set out early on 22 July 2014 for a good day's golf.  The weather forecast was to be hot and sunny but when we started the Carmuirs Course it was warm cloudy and humid.  It wasn't to last and by mid-round it was very humid, and getting hotter as we made our slow progress.  The main course was just as good as I'd remembered it and we were both playing pretty well.  We both liked this, the 8th, a rolling 476 Yard Par 5 played from an elevated tee.  It's a 170 Yard carry over a stream from the tee and a large bunker 240 Yards out will also catch your attention.  I'd just gone past that bunker with my drive and had a 3 Wood from there, played right of the green to allow the slope to carry my ball towards the green.  An easy enough birdie (and it's not often I get to say that!).  The longest hole is the 498 Yard 12th, a rolling Par 5 with a couple of blind shots that plays longer than it looks.

I went round in 84 gross (a shot more than in 2010!) but by the time we'd finished the heat and humidity was pretty uncomfortable.  The 9 Hole Par 3 Course lies at the top of what used to be Carmuirs' 1st fairway, before the course layout was changed some years ago. This view from near to the top of that old fairway (now part of Carmuirs' excellent practice facilities doesn't do justice to the steep slope and it's easy to imagine why this part of the course was taken out of play.  Once you've climbed this fearsome hill, the Par 3 Course starts with a flat and gentle 60 Yard hole.  An easy pitch and a lob wedge chip and run was enough for that one, so an opening birdie.  From there, it's a short stroll to the rest of the course - thankfully almost completely flat, with holes from 70 to around 160 Yards, all with fast running small greens.

This Par 27 approx 900 Yard course is apparently extensively used by juniors and for general practice.  The photos above show a couple of views of the course.  I went round in level par gross after birdies at the 1st and 4th and bogies at the 2nd and 8th.  However, by the time I finished the temperature had climbed to a humid 26 Degrees and although there was ample time for the short course at Callendar Park, my energy levels were low, so I left that one for another day.

Overall, I really like the set up at Carmuirs.  The main course is terrific and the practice facilities are pretty good too (and the chilli cheese burger and ice cold Guinness at lunchtime also went down a treat!).  I recommend you give this place a try.

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