The Alwoodley is a very fine golf course, one that members will enjoy playing for years and visitors will enjoy whether they play it only once or several times.
This is a joint H. S. Colt and Alistair Mackenzie design and you really see some of the Mackenzie features throughout the golf course. It is a good routing, both in terms of easing you into the round and the finish. The course is relatively easy for the first three holes, typically played downwind. The fourth is easy a brute as a par four or too easy as a par five as one has now turned to play into the wind. This is followed by another relatively easy short par 4 whose only defense is the uphill shot into a tiered green.
The sixth is magnificent, a longer par four that doglegs left into a well bunkered and very good green complex. The green side bunkers are very good.
The likely most controversial hole is the par five tenth, a sharp dogleg left to a severely sloped green. A long hitter will likely hit this green in two with an 8 iron or less.
This is followed by the terrific par 3 that is well bunkered with a very good green. My only mistake is only playing this hole once as it is that good. I was playing well to here but took a double bogey and did not care.
The next great hole is the 15th, which I played into the teeth of a strong wind. This hole is so well conceived, bunkered, great sloping green that I mistook it for a par five instead of the difficult par four that it is.
The 17th has the only other green that is a downhill shot and brings strategy of your approach shot into play.
The 18th is a very fine finishing hole to a large green.
The Alwoodley likely is not a huge challenge to the long, scratch player but for those of average length playing between 5-20 index it is a lot of fun. It has a very good mixture of hard and easy holes. One should definitely play it if one is in the are.
Date: September 28, 2019