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EAGLE RIDGE Resort & Spa  800-892-2269 - SOUTH COURSE

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Chicago Golf Course Review

03 -The South Course at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa

Introduction (scroll down for a review of the South Golf Course)

Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa offers four finely manicured golf courses (three 18-hole layouts and one 9-hole course) are the highlights of a 6,800 acre development that features the 80-room Eagle Ridge Inn plus 300 resort homes. Accommodations in standard hotel rooms and in 3 to 6 bedroom homes are available, and recreational opportunities abound, including tennis, swimming in an indoor pool with retractable windows, Jacuzzi, sauna, boating and fishing, hot air balloon rides, children's activities, fitness activities, horseback riding and more. For more information on what many feel is the top golf resort in the Midwest - visit our Eagle Ridge Inn page by clicking here.


Each of the four designs - The General, the North Course, the South Course and the nine-hole East Course, are rated 4 to 4 1/2 stars by Golf Digest Places to Play - with The General considered to be the top layout - annually ranked with the very best courses in the country. To play here - you must stay here, on one of the many packages that are available in a great variety of accommodations. There are four separate clubhouses, each with a pro shop, restaurant/lounge and practice putting green. The North, South and General clubhouses feature locker rooms with showers, and a spacious grass driving range is centrally located at the North Course - easily accessible from anywhere at the resort.

The South Course at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa

The South Course at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa

Golf at Eagle Ridge provides outstanding facilities and top notch conditioning and service. Golfers on any of the four courses will find finely sculpted tees, fairways and bunkers - and immaculate putting surfaces that roll true. The terrain is unique for the region, as ice age glaciers left behind steep hills, limestone cliffs and breathtaking views. Though each course is unique, one will find that all 4 maintain the same course marking systems, with measurements on tee boxes and sprinkler heads, and with 150 yard stakes visible in the fairways. Daily pin placement sheets for the three rotating hole locations are posted on each golf cart. On The General, cart paths also have measurements at 100, 150 and 200 yards.


The South Course at Eagle Ridge is cut through a heavily wooded valley, with a stream coming into play on 11 holes. We found that this course sneaks up on you...the initial holes play through fairways bordered by large oak and walnut trees that demand accuracy off the tee. Natural rock outcroppings and winding streams create outstanding views as the course makes its way through the back nine, which is much more picturesque.

The South Course at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa

The South Course at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa

The South plays to 6762 with a 134 slope from the black tees. The two alternative tee areas measure 6334 (130 slope) and 5609 (129 slope), with the mid tees providing a considerable challenge for the average golfer. The narrow, tree lined fairways, many with doglegs of varying degrees, and numerous streams will make players work to score their handicaps. This for us, proved to be the second most challenging layout at Eagle Ridge. It is important to get off to a good start here - with the first four-hole set being the most score-able on the course.

Grip it and rip it off the first tee! Aim for the left center of the fairway and a clear and short approach should lead to a good score. Number two presents a narrow tree lined fairway that turns abruptly right about 80 yards out - this is a challenging birdie/easy par. Aim for the center of the green on the par three third, as long is better than short here.  There is not much to gain by hitting driver on the 339 yard par four 4th - a lay up to the 150 will leave a tight approach to a long green with a water hazard to the right. Anything hit past the 150 on five will roll down the slope leaving a challenging, below the feet approach to a perched putting complex. Lay up and the approach is simple. A right to left shot shape off the tee on six will cut some distance and enable long hitters to go for the green in two on this 505 yard par five. There is ample room straight over the fairway traps. A tight par three on seven is followed by a pair of challenging finishing holes. Eight is bordered by a creek all along the right and trees left. The hazard crosses the fairway about 30 yards out with a large bunker also fronting the green. Number nine is extremely tight from tee to green, and at 402 yards is the number two handicap. The pond on the right creeps in towards the fairway about 145 out.

The South Course at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa

The South Course at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa

The back side plays 200 yards longer, with 2 par fours of 440 plus, a 214 yard par three and long par five making up most of the distance. The number nine hole is rated as the # 2 handicap, and hole number ten is # 1...managing these holes may very well determine your degree of success on the South Course. There is a creek all along the right side that cuts through the fairway about 60 yards out on the tenth. You must be on the left side of the fairway, which slopes left to right, for a clear shot on the approach.

Eleven is a beautiful dogleg left par five with plenty of landing room off the tee. There is water right and behind the green on the approach to a well bunkered putting surface. Approaches must land near the front of this green, as it runs quickly towards the hazard behind.  A lay up to the left side past the 150 will leave an easy second shot on the score -able par four 12th. Number 13 is a pretty par three, with a creek about 40 yards in front of a well protected green guarded by bunkers and trees on both sides.  The tee shot on 14 must land in the 150-130 yard area to catch the dogleg - long hitters may be able to cut this hole by aiming over the tree line along the right, which will require a carry to the 100 yard marker. The 469 yard (429 from the mid tees) par four 15th, is tough to reach in regulation. There is ample room off the tee, but it turns slightly left and trees on that side plus a large bunker short right off the green means many golfers will be playing for an up and down par on this # 3 handicap. The 16th poses a blind, uphill tee shot - in fact the hole plays severely uphill all the way along a twisty, curvy path. It is recommended that you drive up and examine this hole before hitting your second shot. There is more room than appears, but tall trees are in the way on both sides - tough hole. A simple par three on 17 is followed by a beautiful closing hole.   From an elevated tee golfers will have to lay up before the creek, while getting as close as possible to the hazard (it comes into play about 130 yards from the green) to leave a reasonable uphill approach. The right center is the place to be here.

The South Course at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa

The South Course at Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa

The South starts slowly, but the holes become more beautiful and challenging as you proceed. The back nine is a tremendously interesting track. Overall, we found it to be one of the most challenging of the 4 designs at Eagle Ridge. The mid tees at 6361 yards will require the best effort from mid-handicappers, and the front tees with all the water hazards and doglegs, are not much easier. As with the other layouts here, the South is definitely a recommended play.


For more information on this course and a link to its website (if available) visit our detailed listing page in the Two Guys Who Golf Chicago Section: click here.

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