Beginning in August of 2015, BuffaloGolfer instituted a three-tiered course review protocol. Championship Tees offers an idea of the very best that the course has to offer. Member Tees reveals what the typical guest or first-time player needs to know about the course. Forward Tees is precisely that: an honest opinion that some might consider a bit forward. We hope that this system works to your advantage and gives you a sincere perspective on each golf course
Shawnee Resort Red Nine (Shawnee on Delaware, PA)
The legend of Shawnee has it that before A.W. Tillinghast designed the Winged Foot, San Francisco, Bethpage and other courses, he came to Shawnee-On-The-Delaware and created an 18-hole golf course in 1911 on a Pennsylvania island in the Delaware river. The nines that Tillinghast created are the Red and Blue nines. The white was added in the late 1960s, by Bill Diddell. Both the Red and Blue have a terrific par three that plays over a branch of the Delaware. On the Blue, you have until the 7th hole to steady your nerves; on the Red, it’s the second hole, so be ready! The Red nine is a classic example of a golden-age golf layout whose gift is in the strategy required to maneuver the ball from tee to hole. No monstrous hazards impede, no gargantuan bunkers protect, the fairways or the greens of the Red nine. Instead, you move your ball into position on the wide fairways, for a shot at the brief or angled or elevated green sites.
From the very first tee shot, it is evident that you need to hit the ball long enough. You also have to place it safe enough, in order to keep control. The holes are not long, with the exception of the ninth, a stout (457 yard) par four that closes the nine. Anyone who drives the ball 230 yards will have mid and short irons into every green. So what’s the rub then? You need to keep the ball in play. A creek fronts the first hole, protecting the left side. Tee shots up the left, therefore, will deal with the water more than those up the right. The Red is not heavily treed, but arbor will impede or block tee balls that stray loosely from fairway center. It’s also worth knowing what’s around the greens, so play to the front-center of the putting surfaces, to ensure that you have a chance to roll your rock. If you get greedy and a bit wild, that proper angle on the approach will become more daunting.
Of the three nines, the Red is the friendliest for visiting golfers. It is shorter than the Blue and it has less water than the white. Ergo, it is a perfect place to begin your round. The Red is also the only nine with a predominance of par four holes; the White and Blue each have three of each type par, while the Red has five of the mid-length variety. Full irons will be required on the five par-four holes, and fewer hybrids and fairway metals will come out of your bag on the Red. Be sure to spend some extra time on the practice green with your approach putts, as the majority of the putting surfaces have some size to them.
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