From the very start you know you are in for a real treat at Woodhall Spa. Stepping on the first tee you immediately feel like you are about to play a pure classic heathland course but know that it will be hard with all the bunkers that are in the way. The condition of the hotchkin was awesome and not many other courses are up to the same standard as here. The greens were rapid and tees and fairways were manicured exceptionally well. Bunkers were deep but designed really well and the heather just made it all the more enjoyable. The key to Woodhall Spa is figuring out where all the bunkers are and where not to miss it. There are so many deep bunkers which can cause some awful scores that it is important to plot your way round and stay well clear of them.
The first hole is a tough start with about 12 fairway bunkers making it important to hit it straight off the tee. The 2nd and 3rd are fairly straight forward but then 4-9 can be absolutely brutal. The 4th is a tight par 4 with a deep cross bunker about 240 yards up and lots of heather left and right. The 5th is a very short par 3 but has an extremely deep bunker to the right of the green making it important to hit to the left. The 6th is beautiful hole but probably the hardest on the course with a narrow tee shot and brutally thick heather to the left and right. I missed the fairway by 5 yards and had to take an unplayable as the lie was so bad.
The back 9 gets a lot tighter and more tree lined and starts off with a short par 4 playing about 320 yards, keeping it in play is key on this hole. The 11th is then a long par 4 with a deep fairway bunker on the left and out of bounds on the right. The approach shot is played towards a slightly elevated green and going over a patch of heather/thick rough. The 12th is one of m favourite par 3s, measuring about 145 yards with one of the deepest bunkers ever to the left of the green. Of course me being me I went in there but miraculously managed to save a par. When we got to 16 I felt great deal of sadness as the first 15 holes had sped by and it felt like I'd only just teed off 10 minutes ago. I was in such love with the course I could've played another 54 holes and not gotten bored. Heading down 18 was a great but sad feeling as you felt happy to have played such a wonderful course but sad that it was over so quickly and you couldn't go out again.
In my opinion this is better than West Sussex and I would say as a course this is extremely near to being as good as Swinley Forest and so is up there with one of my favourite heathland courses I've ever played. For this reason I must absolutely give the 6 ball rating that Woodhall Spa deserves as it really is a top quality golf course. I will definitely return soon to play there again as it really is perfection.
Date: August 22, 2019