Golf Course Overview: The Golf Courses of Lawsonia
Insights From An Insider With Josh Carroll, Director of Golf
By Brian Weis
Local and traveling golfers love to research courses before playing them, whether it is to gain some local knowledge or to set an expectation before their upcoming round. Below is an interview with Josh Carroll who shares some valuable insight about the property, its most talked about holes and the signature dish/drink to consume at the 19th hole.
Provide a brief description of the golf course/property, the terrain and best times of the year to play.
The Links Course can best be described as a true links style course, challenging firm/fast greens, golden fescue grass, and gentle rolling terrain. The Woodlands course is exactly as it sounds, it is carved throughout the woods, with very receptive yet fast greens. The Woodlands is a more difficult off the tee, club selection is crucial, but easier around the greens. Whereas the Links course is more forgiving off of the tee, but much more challenging around the greens.
Personally I think the best time to play the Links course is late summer when the fescue is as long and as gold as it will get. The golf course is in perfect shape, and the views are unmatched.
The best time to play the Woodlands is early fall, when the autumn colors are just before peak. (and still on the tree)
Share with golfers, your most recent awards and golf course improvements.
Ranked #60 Top 100 Classic Courses in USA - Golfweek
Ranked #59 America's 100 Greatest Public Courses - GolfDigest
Ranked #87 Top 100 Courses you can play - GolfMagazine
Any tips on playing and reading the greens?
Play more break and hit it softer! Anything above the hole on the Links is costly. But a good rule of thumb for both courses is to never forget where the lake is..
Starting on hole #1, are there any tips to get your round off on the right foot?
Links 1 dogleg right par 4 - Stay right. Bigger hitters can get away with a 3 wood off the tee, but most players hit driver. There is a very daunting slope off of the back left of the green, so keeping the ball right off the tee gives you a much better angle at green. (just keep it short of the cross bunker about 280 yards off the tee)
Woodlands 1 slight double dog leg par 5 - Find the fairway. If you are a big hitter and can play a consistent tight draw then that is the play, there is a speed slot in the fairway that kicks you a good 40 yards forward making the hole reachable. But the smart play is to grab your fairway finder, then hit a good layup to the left side of the fairway, and aim for the middle of the green with your approach.
What is your favorite par 5, and how would you recommend playing it?
My favorite par five at Lawsonia is number 9 on the Links course. Firstly, the view from the tee box is gorgeous in an evening sun. But then you look over a 530 yard dogleg right par 5 that just teases you to try to bite off the corner. If you try to bite off the corner and fail your ball will find fescue grass which covers the entire right side, so a lay up from there is your only play. If you manage to carry the corner you are left with anywhere from 220-280 yards left to the flag, depending on how much of the corner you bit off. For the bigger hitters that find the fairway, the tallest tree that you see is the center of the green, aim for that and swing away with your approach. For the average golfer, the smart play is to hit driver straight down the fairway, ideally hugging the right side. From there you must determine if you want to be aggressive with your second shot or not, a layup to 150 yards brings two perfectly placed cross bunkers into play, so you must decide if you would like to carry those or lay back. The layup is all uphill which makes gauging the distance even more challenging. Once you have successfully laid up, take aim at the center of the green and go make your par!
What is your favorite par 3, and how would you recommend playing it?
May favorite par three is hole number 7 on the Links course. It is a downhill shot from about 160 yards that is all carry. Anything short and you are looking up a 25 foot grass face, almost a certain bogey. The best way to play the hole is to play a little fade (for a right hand player) because the green actually is angled for a fade ball flight. This way in case you don't catch all of it, you have less distance to travel before you reach the green. And if the pin is back right, the ball will funnel all the way back there if it as enough speed.
In your opinion, what is the hardest hole and do you have any tips on playing it?
In my opinion, hole number 6 on the Links is the most challenging hole on property. I wish I had a good tip to playing it, but I can never seem to figure it out either. Again, it is a hole where you must find the fairway, yet stay short of a cross bunker on the left which you can not see from the tee. Once you are in the fairway you will be tested with an obscure lie of some sort, whether the ball is above your feet or below your feet, something will be challenging you. Then you must carry the ball all the way onto the green because of a valley between you and the green. It is important to remember that it really isn't downhill, just looks that way, make sure that you grab enough club to reach the front of the green. Then the green is just a beast, easily the most challenging putting surface we have.
As a golfer plays the final three holes, is there a chance for salvation? (any tips on closing out the round?)
Yes there is! Hole number 16 is tough since it is all up hill, get your par there then try to attack 17 and 18. Hole 17 is a short par 4 to an elevated island green surrounded by bunkers. If you can find the fairway, you can clip a wedge close to the pin and knock in your birdie. Hole 18 is a reachable par 5, two good swings and you are putting for eagle! Although, if you get left at anytime on 18, you will be scraping for a par!
The Golf Courses of Lawsonia
W2615 S. Valley View Drive
Green Lake, WI, 54941
Revised: 03/05/2019 - Article Viewed 22,320 Times
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About: Brian Weis
Brian Weis is the Publisher of GolfTrips.com, a network of golf travel and directory sites including GolfWisconsin.com, GolfMichigan.com, ArizonaGolfer.com, GolfAlabama.com, etc. Professionally, Brian is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America (GWAA), International Network of Golf (ING), Golf Travel Writers of America (GTWA), International Golf Travel Writers Association (IGTWA) and The Society of Hickory Golfers (SoHG). In 2016, Brian won The Shaheen Cup, an award given to a golf travel writer by his peers.
All of his life, Brian has been around the game of golf. As a youngster, Brian competed at all levels in junior and high school golf. Brian had a zero chance for a college golf scholarship, so he worked on the grounds crew at West Bend Country Club to pay for his University of Wisconsin education. In his adult years, his passion for the game collided with his entrepreneurial spirit and in 2004 launched GolfWisconsin.com. In 2007, the idea for a network of local golf directory sites formed and GolfTrips.com was born. Today, the network consists of a site in all 50 states supported by national sites like GolfTrips.com, GolfGuide.com and GolfPackages.com. It is an understatement to say, Brian is passionate about promoting golf and golf travel on a local, regional, national and international level.
On the golf course, Brian is known as a fierce weekend warrior that fluctuates between a 5-9 handicap. With a soft fade, known as "The Weis Slice", and booming 300+ drives, he can blast it out of bounds with the best of them.
Contact Brian Weis:
GolfTrips.com - Publisher and Golf Traveler