Located almost exactly halfway between Edmonton and Calgary, the 18-hole course at Red Deer Golf and Country Club sits on a bend of the Red Deer River as it meanders through the town on its way towards the South Saskatchewan River.
The club was founded in 1922, though another club had been in existence three years earlier, with members playing on a 6-hole course in nearby West Park Estates. When the new club took over, it’s reported that 150 sheep were used to keep the fairways on the former Wilkins ranch in good order.
It’s not known who laid out the original holes but we do know that architect Bill Robinson worked on the course sometime during or after the 1970s. Ian Andrew was then called in to – as he terms it – “age the modern renovation work” that had already been done.
Working to a Master Plan drawn up in 2007, Ian extended the 4th hole to a par five, opening a view out to the river. Subsequently, the club has added new tees to holes 5, 7 and 8 as well as reworking some bunkers that had been recommended for refurbishment.
Today, the course extends to a very healthy 6,921 from the back tee pegs, featuring a fine set of par threes at holes 2, 5 15 and 17. The signature hole is regarded as the 522-yard 6th, where golfers tee off from the highest point on the property, aiming for a well bunkered landing area on the fairway.