- Top 100 Golf Courses of Canada 2022
Top 100 Golf Courses of Canada 2022
Top 100 Golf Courses of Canada 2022
Welcome to the last major chart release before we begin our next two-year cycle at the end of the year. Three Canadian tracks made it into the coveted global standings last time around and it will be interesting to see if they’ll be joined by any more layouts from the Great White North this time. For now, we’ve concentrated solely on the national listings, where there are 6 new entries, 14 non-movers, 27 courses climbing up and 53 falling down.
The top three positions in our new Canadian Top 100 are unaltered, which means Cabot Cliffs in Inverness, Nova Scotia retains the No.1 spot for the third consecutive edition of our biennial golf listings. Designed by Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw, this 18-hole layout also occupies a place in the top half of our World Top 100 so quality golf is assured for those who make the not inconsiderable trip to play here.
Recent comments from reviewers include: “any golfer that appreciates the natural beauty of golf should put the Cliffs at the top of their list… the site that Cabot Cliffs traverses is surprisingly diverse. One expects the rolling dunescape along the cliffs but the course also moves through marshland and inland through woodlands and meadows, up and down through significant elevation change.”
Rising two places to #4, the course at Banff Springs Golf Club in Alberta is looked upon as Stanley Thompson’s masterpiece. His redesign of the original layout in the late 1920s cost a million dollars, making it the most expensive course in the world at the time, but many would now consider that money well spent.
Our well-travelled correspondent Bob McCoy posted a review last year, saying “on my list of 1,175 courses played, Banff Springs is the best mountain course in the world and is definitely in my World Top 100 list.”
Another impressive upward move inside the elite top 10 comes from the course at Memphrémagog Golf Club in Magog, Quebec, climbing three spots to #9. It’s a new millennium design from Tom McBroom that was built a while back for a couple of wealthy business who wanted a tough track to test both their elite membership and the small number of guests who receive a rare invitation to play here.
The next big positive moves are made further down the listings.
At #35 (up ten), the course at Rosedale Golf Club in Toronto has been in play for more than a hundred years now, hosting all the national major championships in its early years, including the 1928 Canadian Open which was staged six years after Donald Ross redesigned the layout. In more recent times, respected Ross restorer John Faught has worked at the club to thin out trees, rework bunkers and rebuild a number of greens.
Moving up seventeen places to #36, the course at Lookout Point Country Club in Fonthill, Ontario celebrates its centenary next year. One of only three Canadian layouts designed by Walter Travis, the course lies just ten miles west of the famous Niagara Falls at one of the most elevated positions on the Niagara Escarpment, hence its name. Architect Ian Andrew has left his mark here in the last few years, restoring a number of the greens.
The course at Scarboro Golf & Country Club in Toronto (up ten to #41) is A. W. Tillinghast’s only Canadian design, with the architect rebuilding the original George Cumming layout in the early 1920s. Renovation work has been carried out by a few designers since then but it’s the more recent bunker restoration by Gil Hanse and Ian Andrew that has taken the course to another level altogether.
In the bottom half of the new table, another four courses make double digit improvements on their previous chart positions.
Cherry Hill Club in Ridgeway, Ontario (up twelve to #54) is home to another Walter Travis design dating back to 1922. Robbie Robinson upgraded the layout in preparation for the Canadian Open to mark the club’s 50th anniversary in 1972 and Ian Andrew oversaw an extensive bunker renovation just over ten years ago. The trademark Travis “chocolate drop” fairway mounds are long gone but the inherent character of his layout remains largely intact.
Described by a reviewer last year as “a real diamond in the rough,” the Algonquin Resort Golf Course in St Andrews, New Brunswick (up seventeen to #71) has been in operation for over a century. Donald Ross modified the initial layout in the 1920s and this version of the course remained in play until Thomas McBroom made modifications early in the new millennium. In 2016, a Rod Whitman redesign reinvigorated things by way of tree removal, bunker refurbishment and the rebuilding of several greens.
The Ross and MacKenzie nines at the St Charles Country Club in Winnipeg (up fourteen to #78) have been in play since the late 1920s. Mike DeVries consulted at the club for a number of years but it’s the current bunker upgrade work of Jim Urbina that has really caught the eye here. As he says: “this is the only Alister MacKenzie course in Canada, and a great Ross. This is having a Rembrandt in your backyard for years and getting the chance to restore it.”
St Charles Country Club
Moving up ten rungs on the ladder to #89, the course at Royal Mayfair Golf Club in Edmonton debuted in 1922, with holes laid out by J. Munro Hunter, the Alberta amateur champion. Stanley Thompson was called in to remodel the layout soon after it first opened and the new course was unveiled in June 1933, six years after the architect developed his redesign plan. The club’s rebuilding its clubhouse at the moment to create an elegant and modern structure that will serve the members for years to come.
Six courses drop out to make way for six newcomers though, strictly speaking, three of these are re-entries, having previously graced the national chart in times gone by.
The first re-entry is Sagebrush in Quilchena, British Columbia at #18. Opened to much critical acclaim in 2009, this Rod Whitman-designed layout ran into financial difficulties and was forced to close a few years back but it’s now, in the words of the club, “accepting limited groups for a ‘beta test’ of the club’s emerging facilities for the remainder of the Summer and Fall 2021”. We can only say welcome back to one of BC’s finest golf experiences!
Also re-appearing at #69 is the 18-hole Mt Kidd layout at the Kananaskis Country Golf Course in Alberta, which was devastated by flooding in 2013 and re-built by Gary Browning as part of a multi-million dollar disaster recovery programme. All but four of the thirty-six holes on site were reconstructed from scratch before the Mt. Kidd and Mt. Lorette courses could be brought back into play five years after they were decimated.
Kananaskis Mt Kidd
It’s been a while since Riverside Country Club in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan was last in the Canadian Top 100 (#94 then #95 in the first two chart editions to be exact) so it’s more than a decade since this Bill Kinnear-designed layout gained national recognition. Robbie Robinson, Bill Robinson and Graham Cooke have all made changes down the years to a course that has hosted both the Canadian Men’s and Women’s Amateur championships three times since the mid-1960s.
The highest of the brand new entries arrives at #38 and it’s the newly opened Mickelson National Golf Club course outside Calgary that muscles its way into the standings. It took more than a decade for owner Barry Ehlert and his Windmill Golf Group to finally get this place off the ground last year, transforming what was formerly flat farmland with little movement into a big, bold stadium layout which is well-equipped to host major professional golf tournaments.
Also new at #78, the course Tarandowah Golfers Club in Springfield, Ontario is a Martin Hawtree layout that’s designed to play firm and fast as a links-style track, with undulating bent grass fairways, pot bunkers and cunningly-contoured greens. Anybody playing here nowadays would be hard pressed to believe this property was nothing other than a family farm up until golf came along in 2006.
The last of our new entries at #86 is Waskesiu Golf Course in Prince Albert National Park, Saskatchewan. Stanley Thompson designed the layout in the late 1920s though an 18-hole course didn’t get built until 1935. The architect returned shortly after World War II to suggest improvements but not all of them were implemented. Doug Carrick consulted at the club in the mid-1990s, adding new tees to lengthen the course, along with new bunkers and a few other tweaks.
To view the complete detailed list of our latest Top 100 Golf Courses of Canada click the link.
Our regional rankings for ten Canadian provinces have also been refreshed. To view these revised listings in greater detail, click the following links:
Alberta Top 50
British Columbia Top 60
Manitoba Top 10
New Brunswick Top 5
Newfoundland and Labrador Top 5
Nova Scotia Top 15
Ontario Top 100
Prince Edward Island Top 10
Quebec Top 30
Saskatchewan Top 5
If you have any comment to make on any of the above charts then please use the “Respond to this article” link at the top or bottom of this page.
Top 100 Golf Courses