First opened for play in 1992, the course became a fixture on the PGA Champions Tour four years later when it hosted the Boone Valley Classic. Hale Irwin and Larry Nelson certainly enjoyed playing here at that time as they each won two editions of the competition during its six-year stint on the senior circuit.
Hale Irwin – three-time US Open champion and native Missourian – then modified the course when he carried out substantial alterations to the 15th and 18th holes prior to the course being used for the 2007 US Junior Amateur Championship.
Just before that national event, the following was written in a USGA report about the course:
“Its beauty lies in its rustic appeal and natural turf setting that consists of rye, fescue, bent grass and native grasses. It resembles something you might play in the northern regions of the country, or in this case, a desolate locale.
However, the tranquil setting is worthy of a mirage. With the exception of generous fairways, the course is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Many of the bent grass greens look as flat as a pancake but there are dips and contours that don’t initially register until it’s too late.”
You will struggle to find a golf course in finer condition than Boone Valley. I have played this track 10 times or so over the last 5 years and it is always in phenomenal shape. Private club, very small membership and unlimited funds (course is subsidized by Enterprise Rent A Car family I believe) equal impeccable shape. The best driving range I have ever seen. The course itself is, for me, a bear. I am a decent golfer (index fluctuates between 9 and 11) with plenty of length and I have never once scored well here. Biggest issue for me is there are very few flat lies to be found at Boone, even when you poke the ball down the middle. You will not get a lot of roll on these fairways. Plenty of elevated greens, which are quite challenging. One of the few course I have played where the experience of just being there trumps the course. The employees are some of the nicest, most service oriented you will ever find. Remote area of Missouri. You definitely feel like you are someplace special when at Boone. Be prepared for a very challenging round of golf.
Boone Valley is one of the more beautiful places I have played golf. I played it early on a summer morning, and when driving along the road into the club you turn to look at it and the valley suddenly opens up in front of you. As we were driving down the driveway, there was a light damp mist that was hanging over the course, waiting for the sun to come out and burn it off. At this point, I felt mesmerized at this seemingly mystic piece of land.
There is not a large membership at Boone, so if you do get the chance to play there, you are more than likely to be one of the only few groups on the course. We were the only group warming up on the pristine driving range, and as soon as we were ready we went over to the first tee (which is right beside the driving range, which I highly enjoyed) and off we went.
The course itself is challenging but slightly unremarkable. It is a big modern golf course that is supremely conditioned. At all points, while playing the course you will enjoy it, it is a beautiful golf course in a stunning location. The only thing I think is missing from Boone is some "soul", it feels like most of the holes are straight or straightish and the course is just asking you to hit the ball high and straight.
My favorite holes at Boone are generally the ones around the edges of the property. 4,5,6,11 and 12 particularly stand out to me. These holes, use the wooded surrounds and creeks/streams that feed the main lakes to provide more interest and strategy.
When leaving Boone, I was left with a strange feeling of what could have been. I had a great day, playing good golf with friends, the land and surrounds are stunning, the service and staff are top notch, but in my opinion, the course just doesn't match up to the piece of land it was built on.
Perfect conditions, quiet. Great lunch too!!!
No offense meant, but is this really a valid review? Six words - three of which are about lunch - doesn't qualify as an adequate review of the golf course, IMO.
I have played Boone Valley twice over the years. Both times it was in immaculate condition as the course does not get a great deal of play. It is typically wet as Adam stated in a previous review. Due to this I would say the fall is the best time to play here but much more difficult to get on because that is typically when the members want to enjoy it. I'm not at all a PB Dye fan but he did come up with some great holes at Boone and they flow together well while presenting many different types of challenges and shots. Again the conditioning is fabulous (probably the best in the St Louis area) and the course is on a fantastic piece of property. Its a must if you ever have the opportunity.
Boone Valley is a beautiful, challenging course located 45 minutes west of St. Louis. I've been fortunate enough to play the golf course 4 times now.
Pros: P.B. Dye did a great job here of creating 18 unique holes that all fit together as one great golf course. The layout keeps a player on his toes, as you can usually hit driver but you may not want to. Boone Valley is located in a beautiful setting where you will only see, hear, and experience pure golf.
Cons: Boone Valley is almost always wet. Three of the four times I've played the course, the tees and fairways were over watered. The bent grass tees and fairways simply cannot stand up to the St. Louis weather.
Amazing setting - check. Amazing golf course - check. Unbelievable staff - check. Privacy - check.
I could go on endlessly, but this is hands down the best golf club in Missouri and one of the best in the world. A wonderful, well-kept secret. Shhh.