Michigan is renowned for a number of things: lakes, the American automotive industry, public golf, and Motown. The lattermost of these things is the only one which cannot be found at Black Lake Golf Club (on an average day, at least). The public-access facility is owned and operated by the United Auto Workers union, and of course sits very near to the title lake (those who wish to drive a bit farther can find Lake Huron nearby).
Rees Jones is the architect on record, and his role came down to finding a route through the beautiful forests in the northern reaches of the state, and occasionally plopping down an impressive sand hazard to complement that route. The most obvious will be at No. 14, a 235-yard par three that features a singular sand hazard that stretches almost the entirety of the hole.
The title lake is actually a touch north of the club, however players will combat smaller bodies of water as they approach several greens. Nos. 6 and 10, a par four and par five respectively, feature fairways that arch around a beckoning pond for those who get a little too aggressive when coming for the green.
Black Lake GC is a reallly good public option and an amazing value. This course has been ranked as a top 100 public access on several occasions and if in another state it would get much more recognition. The course is well out of the way of civilization but is immaculate and the UAW do an amazing job keeping it that way. Some other great things about the Black Lake experience is their fun short course, the pace of play is amazing with rangers everywhere and the golf carts the UAW must have tricked them out cause they are fast and fun. The course may be one of Reese Jones best works as I am not typically a big fan of his work but Black Lake is well done with some great visuals and a beautiful natural setting. It’s very remote but in Michigan summer you can play a morning round here and an afternoon round at Treetops about an hour away.