Elgin is located close to a cluster of famous Speyside distilleries where I suspect most tourists arrive in search of whisky, not golf. This seems rather a pity as Elgin Golf Club provides an interesting and testing round despite measuring less than 6500 yards from the back tees. Length on the card can often be misleading and with seven par-4's over 400 yards and only one par-5 on the card Elgin proves the point.
Regarded by many as one of Scotland's better inland venues, the course is laid out across an undulating piece of land which rewards long and straight driving. With tree-lined holes and well defended greens providing quite a challenge, fairway bunkering is thankfully not overdone.
The quality of the par-4's is undeniable but the quartet of short holes are also memorable. I really enjoyed the back to back par-3's, beginning at the excellent 6th which is a tough nut to crack at 220 yards. The picture perfect green is set amongst large pines with a deep dell swallowing anything missing to the left. A very different challenge follows at the tricky downhill 7th which is fronted with bunkers and demands careful club selection to hold the green.
I wasn't that enamoured with the approach to the 11th green which sits close to a row of houses or the short par-4 which follows at the 12th but these are minor gripes and soon forgotten when reaching the excellent closing stretch which begins at the 14th. The final five holes on this free draining layout are amongst the best onsite and bring an enjoyable round to a satisfying conclusion.
Maybe not one of Scotland's biggest name's but certainly deserving of its national Top 100 status. Brian W
Date: December 31, 2018