If you have played enough golf, especially in New England, every hole at Crestview Country Club in Agawam, MA, will look familiar: doglegs left and right, even a double dog leg par 5, and medium length par 3s with slightly elevated greens, all fairways lined with trees — pretty much dense forests on one side, formerly planted and now mature hard wood trees on the other side with a bit of space in between.  The golf course straddles the Massachusetts and Connecticut borders, which puts ...

A golf course you play for the first time that features blind tee shots is rarely fun.  Mountain courses especially – I am thinking about you, Mount Snow in Vermont – will do some crazy things with your golf ball once it flies over a hill and out of sight.    When I was looking for a golf course to play on my way home to Connecticut from South Carolina about a decade ago, I found that the Neuse Golf Club in Clayton, NC, was not far off my route.  I checked out the Neuse ...

Play at Champlain Country Club in Swanton, VT, is an all-day event, but not because play is slow; after a half dozen rounds there over the years, I have never played in more than four hours.  You can spend the better part of a day at Champlain enjoying 18 holes of golf, which always tends to lead to a post-round libation or two which more than likely then leads into lunch or dinner.  The food is very good, and at dinner time you will share the dining room with locals in non-golfing ...

Bloomfield, CT's Gillette Ridge Golf Club opened in 2004 to major criticism.  The Arnold Palmer layout was just too difficult for the average public golfer.  It was so tough that after a few years, the Palmer group was called back to soften it up.  Course managers had decided that Gillette Ridge's survival was a matter largely of removing some of the treachery around the greens, specifically the parade of bunkers that made greens in regulation nearly ...

I write this on a Monday in mid-June from my home in Henrico County, VA, which is adjacent to the City of Richmond.  Just across to the south side of the James River is Midlothian, VA, in Chesterfield County which also shares a border with Richmond.  Most days, I drive past the Independence Golf Club on my way to Salisbury Country Club where I am a member and recorded my 54th round of the year yesterday.  These clubs are less than five minutes apart and the excellent Foundry Golf ...

I made my annual pilgrimage recently to Copake Country Club, about 90 minutes from my Connecticut home in the rolling countryside of the Berkshire Mountains in upstate New York.  It was a beautiful sunny day, in the low 70s, a good day for updating my photographs of one of my favorite classic golf clubs (designed in the first half of the 20th Century by Devereaux Emmet, a contemporary of Donald Ross and the other greats of early golf architecture. I won’t repeat my earlier review of ...

Fairview Farm in Harwinton, CT, meets the strictest definition of off the beaten cart path.  It is out in the country, on the site of a former working farm, a good 45 minutes from Hartford and 30 minutes from my own home.  In other words, you have to go a bit out of your way to get there. It is worth the trip in that the course is typically in fine condition, the staff of the family-run business is always friendly and helpful, and the layout is not quite like any other public golf ...
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Our Mission

The cart paths to golf courses we all know well, even if we have never set foot on the first tee there, are well worn. They are Pebble Beach, the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island, some of the Pinehurst Resort courses and other heralded and well-trafficked layouts (where green fees can be as much as 10 times the price of a lesser known but highly playable muni). Think of Off The Beaten Cart Path courses as those that will surprise and delight you, no matter where they are. You just may have never heard of them. 

Please help us add to the list of terrific yet largely unheralded golf courses.

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     Dreaming of a vacation home on a golf course?  How about a forever home a short walk to the first tee?  For 15 years, I have helped golfers find their perfect home on the course.  If you would like some recommendations that match your preferences for a golf home, please click here, fill out our Golf Home Questionnaire, and I will get back to you in a few days with some ideas.  By the way, it’s free.
Larry Gavrich,
Editor