Framed by the beautiful rolling hills of North Yorkshire, Ganton offers a portrait of England’s green and pleasant land like no other. The term “inland links” is often misused, but this is a befitting description of Ganton. Firm, fast running fairways and deep bunkers that are only rivalled by those at Woodhall Spa, Ganton offers a true but stern test. Yet it’s not the test that draws you to Ganton but its endless charm. This starts in the clubhouse where tradition rules and a jacket and tie is needed if you want to be invited into the members’ lounge. This charm continues on the course with details such as the quaint steps that provide you with access into those daunting bunkers or St Nicholas’ Church that offers the classic countryside backdrop to the 14th approach.
The course is a shot-maker’s layout that demands you to put the ball in the right areas. Pockets of gorse are dotted alongside gently rumpled fairways whilst subtle run off areas around the greens will snaggle any slightly offline approach. There are doglegs, blind shots, short par 5s, long par 3s (play the 17th from the yellows) and plenty more to maintain your attention throughout the round.
Sure, I’d agree with the reviewer below in that there are no holes that particularly stand out above any others across the course, but the eighteen holes you’re presented with are sure to test your metal. Some holes at Ganton are even a little quirky, the closing hole being the best example of this where you can stand on the viewing platform to watch your playing partner hit for the marker post before aiming your approach shot at a right-angle from the fairway and attempt to curve your ball around a tree.
Old fashioned and quintessentially English, Yorkshire’s very finest is a course that stays long in the memory.
Date: June 15, 2017