The course at Blue Ridge Shadows Golf Club is laid out as two distinctly different nines with an undulating, tree-lined set of fairways on the outward half and a more open, flatter circuit that's routed round wetlands and water hazards on the inward half.
Architect Tom Clark met with owners John Hopkins and Rick Magalis in 2002 to discuss plans for their Front Royal golf course and it would take a further five years before their relatively small parcel of land was converted on a tight financial budget into the fine 18-hole golf course that's now in play.
Holes 1 to 9 are carved through hilly, heavily wooded terrain and one of the more memorable holes on the front nine is the 420-yard, par four 7th where the fairway pitches and rolls dramatically like giant ocean waves before it reaches a raised, two-tier green.
The back nine begins with a tough par three at hole 10, played knob-to-knob from tee to green, where anything short, long or wide results in an almost certain score of four or more.
Many consider the par four 15th the best of the closing holes. Golfers tee off from a small bluff close to the clubhouse and their shots must avoid a watery grave in Crooked Creek to the left of the fairway en route to the green.
Extreme elevation change on the first few holes followed by slight dog legs that challenge the best of players. The back 9 will start you off with par 3 over a steep drop and waste area and then will wind into the valley for beautiful holes next to the river.