Guest (cart included), played on Saturday, June 2018 at 6:40 AM
Played here first in 1980 then 1996 and now returning with a better game....or so I thought.
They now have four (4) tee boxes with six (6) selections of yardages from 7,078yd down to 5,281yds to pick what best fits your challenge. I chose the Blue/White 6,347yd / 72.0 / 144 / Par 36/36 on this traditional Links, 18 hole loop layout. Yes, once you start, you're in for the complete ride.
This course lives up to its name "The Bear" not just because Jack Nicklaus has his signature design attached to it but what it throws at you on every hole. Fairway bunkers and marsh areas guarding the landing areas with forced carries at the tees and even to five (5) greens for your 2nd shots. Playing today with 9-15mph winds made everything even tougher than its existing design. No GPS on the carts so picking your landing areas (very fair) will stress your range finder devices on every shot. Fairway conditions were excellence with first cut very playable. The long grass after that was .....well.....lets just say take the unplayable lie and save the stress for the greens. The greens couldn't be any faster than they were today (10-12) with the wind sweeping across them but rolling very true with the slightest roll....heavenly.
Every hole is very different and a challenge, to plan your attack on the distances for landing areas to avoid visual trouble. There are six (6) holes that have forced 2nd shot carries across water to greens varying between 135yds to 175yds that will make your grip tighten up just a little bit more. I enjoyed this layout/conditions/weather putting the test to my current game abilities and where I need work......Placement. Shot 43 / 44 w/37 putts (5-3putts) and looking forward to a return trip soon.
(If planning to stay/play pick the "Country Hermitage Bed & Breakfast" which is 1/2 mile away and a Member of the resort. You only pay $20 cart fee not $95.00)