Vermont is a summer playground, full of things to do and see; world-class fly fishing, hiking, biking, canoeing, kayaking, shopping, museums and parks and keep us around for a week or more. The Green Mountain State is also home to some superb golf courses, a number of them located at resorts, making stay and play always an option.
Several of the state’s best courses are in Golfing Magazine’s Free Golf program. To take advantage of his offer, call 860-563-1633, or visit www.FreeGolf.net. You also get our digital magazine sent to you when you join.
The Mount Snow Golf Course (www.MountSnow.com) in Dover is one of Vermont’s premier “mountain” courses and has been rated one of the top five layouts in the state by Golf Digest magazine. The 18-hole, 6,943-yard (there are three other sets of tees) course has also been named one of the top 10 resort courses in the country.
The track meanders through the Vermont countryside and provides views of the Green Mountains, including the peaks of Mount Snow and Haystack Mountain. Tamaracks, oaks, birches and sugar maples line fairways, while the mountains provide a majestic backdrop. The front nine is spread over scenic expanses and the back nine winds its way through wooded terrain. Water comes into play on 11 holes and 41 sand traps are strategically located on almost every hole.
Brattleboro Country Club (www.brattleborocountryclub.com) has been called “a hidden gem” and our readers simply must try out this classic New England layout. The course measures 6,533 from the tips and is full of interesting, challenging and fair holes. Take the par-five second for instance. The hole heads up a hill, takes a right turn to a narrow strip of fairway only to head up another hill for the third shot. Then there is the drivable par-four sixth, the classic risk-reward par-five seventh, and the long par-four 11th, where bogey doesn’t feel all the bad.
A number of improvements to the course and clubhouse have been made in recent years, including a fresh look in the dining room, kitchen, and bar area, irrigation, tree work, cart paths, enhanced gardens and more. The club also has a new fleet of golf carts.
Green Mountain National Golf Club (www.gmngc.com) in Killington is in its second year under new management, Brown Golf Management Company, which is working tirelessly to enhance an already notable facility.
Green Mountain features holes that have demanding tee and approach shots and places a premium on all-around ability. The course was carved out of the mountains, and thus offers solitude and a “private” golf experience. Gently sloping fairways that feature generous landing areas, distinctive changes in elevation, and undulating greens add to the beauty. There are centuries-old rock formations carved by glaciers, and the view from 16th tee is stunning.
The seventh hole is a downhill par-three that plays shorter than its 151 yards. With a ridge in the middle of the green, put your tee shot to the side of the ridge where the pin is located. There’s a bunker in the back of the green.
The Killington Resort course (www.KillingtonGolf.com) features a layout that takes full advantage of unique mountain terrain. Streams, a 2,000-foot elevation, and stunning vistas create a visually sweet venue in which to enjoy the game. The routing features a pleasing mix of holes. There is water on a number of holes, and enough sand bunkers to keep your attention on tee shots and approaches to the modest-sized putting surfaces.
The second hole is a 515-yard par-five that demands a long, straight drive to set up the second shot. The green is reachable in two shots by big hitters, but there is water that fronts the putting surface, so the wiser play is layup and wedge for the third shot.
The 18th is a nice finishing hole, playing 321 yards. Be careful on your tee shot on the par-four, as water hugs the left side of the fairway.