Culver was originally meant to be a 27 hole course, but likely due to the Great Depression and the expansion of Culver Military Academy’s airfield just north of the course, Langford and Moreau’s charmer was kept to nine holes. Still, the course is incredible. The land sits just above a lake which gives it extremely severe terrain. Despite the low budget for this course, the ball still rolls far with the steep slopes. The course features 3 par 3’s, 3 par 4’s, and 3 par 5’s.
The first hole is an incredible hole after you’ve played it multiple times (which is doable in one day since it’s a nine-holer). The tee shot is played over a huge gorge which takes about a 190 yard carry to clear (I have no clue how people played it in the thirties). The second shot is blind over a mammoth bunker on the left which opens up the strategic glory of the course. Playing over the bunker brings more trouble into play but a dry day will allow the ball to roll all the way down onto the green, while a conservative play to the right brings a devilish trap into play. The third is a fantastic eden-like short hole. The fourth doglegs hard to the left back over the gorge. The charm of this hole is that the player has to pick a line off the tee that could leave them anywhere from a chip to an 180 yard shot in. The ninth is possibly one of my favorite three shot holes in the world. The tee shot is blind and for the longer hitter the ball runs all the way down into a valley between deep bunkers. For the shorter hitters, the second shot must be strategically placed over a bunker set into the upswing of the valley to get an angle in.
The greens at Culver are among the most undulating and fun I’ve ever seen. One of my favorite memories in golf is from the fifth hole when I drained a ten footer for eagle that had to have broken at least 15 feet. Langford and Moreau truly demand you to be creative around those greens. The course is free, but is only open to students, faculty, and alumni. So unless you pay the $55,000 annual tuition, the course is difficult to get on
Date: June 30, 2019