Location - Kent
Directions: Access right off I-76, and easy access off Rt.8
Dewsweeper Tee Time was: 630AM
We have a tendency to like "shot makers" golf courses, and Maplecrest certainly is one. Maplecrest is a wonderful, old school golf course chiseled into rolling terrain nestled back in the trees of Kent. It is a par 71, very tight, very tree laden, and a very nice golf course that requires you to swing virtually every club in your bag. You must be able to hit the ball straight to score here. If you can, you are good to go, as it checks on at only 6,300 yards from the tips. There wasn't anything about this golf course we didn't like.
Blessed with short, tight par 4's, very long par 3's and average length par 5's, Maplecrest requires you hit is straight all day. All holes are tree lined with huge mighty oaks, and majestic maple trees. There are plenty of sand bunkers all at the greens, very little water, although there is a creek that weaves in and out of a few holes, primarily on the front 9. Toss in small, and nice greens, many of them raised, and you have a great track. And an historical one, as this has been there since 1928. Great place.
We teed off at 630, and it was a beautiful day. Beef was shaking off the rust of not playing in a couple weeks, and he had the typical problems you would have. Beef suffered from lack of "touch". struggling basically on the greens, with 3 3putts on the front. But hung in there for 45. On the back it was just inconsistent play, as is normal for having time off, and a couple bad breaks and it was a 91 on the day for Beef. But I think the higher than normal number was easy for Beef to set aside, as his son Derek was playing in the group behind us (JR. Dewsweepers), and recorded his first hole in one ever on the tough number 6 par 3, 185 yards uphill. Well done! Much pride for Beef!
Joe Red's son Bryan filled in for Red who is out of the country this week. Bryan was having tough time with the driver at first, but found it halfway through, and posted a 42 on the front, and struggled with a bad break or two on the back. Bryan also had a tough time on some of the par 3's, as there are five of them, all are pretty long and tough. But even though Bryan never really go into a good gofler's rhythm, he hung in there, and posted a bogey golf round of 90.
Tex is hitting his new driver extremely well, and it's going to change his game in the long run. Tex was sailing along after the first 8 holes playing very well. A few pars and great birdie on number 4 had Tex right in it. Then a very bad number on number 9, par 5 really killed his front 9, shooting a 46, but he played much better than that. Tex battled the course and the memory of number 9 for while, and played pretty well till 18, another par 5, and another bad number there. Tex finished with a 94, and should have scored much better than that. But oh, those bad numbers. But his game is coming along, equipment is making a big time positive difference.
I struggled for the first 3 holes then got down to business. With a birdie on number 5 and few pars I escaped with a 40 on the front. On the back I played well and under control, until I took a double on 16 and 18 to hurt my score more than it should have been. Shooting a 43 on the back, but a penalty stroke on 18 hurt, and a bad double on 16 didn't help. That one was needless. I also staggered out of the gate, 3 putting on 1 par 5. 83 on the day.
Course highlights? All 5 par 3's are great golf holes, with the awesome number 8 230 yards (1 handicap, how often do you see that?) to an elevated green as the crown jewel of them all. All 3's are long. Number 1, 500 yard par 5, tree lined both sides all the way. Number 10, doggy left, with a beautiful and tough approach shot. Number 2, fantastic par 4, so is number 4, and 5 which is easily drivable. And number 14, 400 yard par 4 to a tough green to hit, tree lined both sides all the way. Great hole.
Maplecrest is a great, traditional course. If you want to wail away with the driver all day long, you won't play well here. Use your bag, and good course management and you will. This is a course that has to be thought out. But it is certainly worth a play or two. We will be back later this summer.