The OCCM reimagining has elevated this sand based beauty to both regional and national prominence. I had not played the layout prior to getting 50 holes in here over two days. The abiding memory is of generally expansive playing corridors which provide a number of strategic choices from the tee. Little acknowledgments to the origins of the game, such as punchbowl greens, a number of blind approaches, heroic carries and most delightfully a number of short par 4’s ensures that the interest level is maintained throughout.
The course is on a compact piece of land, separated by a busy road, which must be negotiated on two occasions, as you move to and from the main paddock. My favourite holes include the short second , the 8th with its split fairway, the visually imposing par 5 14th and the short ultra strategic 16th.
Boundary issues and an unsympathetic council have forced the designers OCCM to create the 5th a hole that mixes opinion, effectively a layup is required from the tee with a long second to a semi-blind green, protected with bunkers to its rear. I really like the questions this holes asks of the golfer, however, I understand that this view is not universally shared amongst members. Notwithstanding the above, Bonnie Doon represents a welcome return to the best in sand based Australian golf with a bit of welcome quirk thrown in to spice things up. A golfing visit to Sydney would not be complete without ticking this one off your list.
For more information on my Australian golfing adventure, please click the following link: The Long Road to Van Diemen's Land
Date: September 22, 2020