Course: Easton Club
Tees: Gold (One in front of Tips)
Weather: 55 cloudy and windy
Played With: My buddy Jason, His buddy Brain, My Girlfriends dad Bill
Written By: Chris Conley
Rating:A Bottom of Review
The Easton Club, in Easton Maryland, has recently changed ownership and I had heard great things so I decided to play it and catch up with an old friend. When I woke up and looked outside, I just had a feeling it wasn’t going to be a successful day on the course but I went anyway. I think it got colder out as I drove east on route 50 towards Easton, by the time I got to the course the wind had picked up and I was debating if my shorts decision was going to come back to haunt me. Once I checked in, I headed out to the range to hit balls with Bill and realized with a light jacket I was quite warm but the wind was going to be a huge issue. The average weekend price is about $60 a round, which overall is a good price for playing on a weekend but I think if if the prices were reduced $10 this would be a steal of a deal. First thing I noticed after checking in, was that this was a pay by the bucket range, which I stated in my last review that I don’t like. People pay good money to play golf and want to enjoy your course and play as well as possible. Charging them $6 for 25-30 balls to warm up with is a slap in the face, I generally hit 50-70 balls and work on different shots on the range and that is impossible when you have to pay for every bucket of balls. The range itself is nice, with your choice of both the mat and real grass hitting areas, they have a nice putting and chipping green as well.
I heard from my buddy Jason that the hole layout changed to make the course flow better, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. The course goes out with a 36, and consists of your standard five par 4′s, two par 5′s and two par 3′s. Hole one was the same as I remembered it from visits to the course, a slight dog leg right short part 4; houses line the left of this hole and if you hit it more than 10 yards off the fairway on the right you are sitting in the middle of the landing area for the driving range, so you are playing your second shot with the chance of being hit by a range ball. After my drive I was only about 20 yards off the green and hit a nice soft chip shot, which still ran to the complete back of the green; which would be a reoccurring theme of the day. The green was sloped from back to front and had a bunker to the front right and far back of the green. Taking into account how fast and hard the green was playing I hit a good putt and left myself a tap in for par to start the day. That would be the last time I heard the p word for the rest of the day. Hole two, is now what had been hole twelve the last time I played the course. This is a par four that is dead straight, with out of bounds (backyards) to the left and water lining the right of the hole. The green is surrounded by water on the left, right and back and you have a very small landing spot; again my second shot was a short chip, hit right in front of the green and ran to the complete back of the green. Hole three, is now what used to be hole 13, and is an island green par 3. The wind decided to pick up as we approached this elevated tee box (about 20 yards higher then green), the wind was blowing so hard I hit a PW into a 165 yard par 3 which I would normally hit a 7-Iron. I hit my irons high, and they all land soft down to the 5-Iron, this shot soared high as normal hit the middle of the green, took three bounces and rolled into the water. After my drop from drop area, ran to the back of the green I ended up taking a double par. I am normally good at chipping into hard greens, and do well at playing faster greens, but these greens seemed to be like landing a ball on concrete. Hole four, what used to be hole 14, is a long par 5 that dog legs to the right, this hole is hard but a pretty hole; you start to wind yourself into the woods of Easton Club on this hole and the holes start to become much narrower and place an emphases on accuracy. There is a large lake to the front right of this green and the left and back are surround by bunkers; this hole is a three shot into the green par 5 but is a fun hole. Hole five, what used to be hole 15, is a dog leg left short par 4; water lines the left and unless you can land your drive about 260 you are using a three wood or 5 wood off the tee. Hole six, is back to the original hole six I was used to, this is a long par 5 where you drive has to be accurate but then the hole opens up. The green is surrounded by water, except the front right and if you do go for this hole in two you better be accurate. Hole seven, is a fun little par 3 over an environmental area, there are bunkers in front and back of green but you can fire at this hole. Unfortunately, I looked at the score card and not the yardage marker on the ground on this hole, and instead of hitting an 8-Iron, I hit a 7-Iron and hit a beautiful shot that just happened to be 10 yards to far, hit the cart path and flew into woods. Hole eight, is a challenging par 4 with a severe dog leg right, your first shot is going to be an iron into a landing area, so you can play your second shot over an environmental area into the green. The green on this hole is nudged up to the woods, in the woods there is a drop off that leads down to a large lake; this is a really cool view and one of the better ones you will see on the course. Hole nine brings you almost all the way back to the club house with a straight forward par 4, only issue with this hole again is accuracy; miss left or right and you are playing your second shot from someone’s back yard or worse yet their living room. The houses sit right up against this fairway and I am sure have been hit on more than one occasion.
At the turn we decided to stop for a sandwich, thinking we could grab a quick sandwich and keep going. However the restaurant had been recently changed over to the new name, The River house and was more of a sit down and eat style restaurant. Luckily we were in no rush so we decided to sit back and enjoy the food and watch some golf at the bar. The food was amazing, and the service was great; the River House seems to be a combination of fancy dinning with a cafe feel. I was really impressed and will come back to the restaurant even if not golfing at the course that day. You can sit out on the deck and watch the golfers play hole 10 and 18 or come inside to the bar area and enjoy a drink while watching sports on two flat screens, or sit in the fancy dining area and enjoy a nice meal. It was quiet, decorated nicely and the food was great.
Hole ten, is exactly as I remembered it, a short par 4 with a slightly elevated green. Much like hole one, on this hole if you go left you are sitting on the driving range with your second shot. Hole eleven, is a short par 3, with bunkers surrounding the front of the green. Every time I play this course I believe the flag has been up front and tucked behind these two bunkers so while this hole seems easy, it is very challenging. Hole twelve is the old hole two, and is a par 4 that fades to the right slightly. Your drive here is key as there is water for the first 100 yards or so of your drive, you want to stay to the left of this fairway as the right has a large fairway bunker and tree which makes your second shot into green hard; if you are on the left of this fairway you are in good condition for your second shot. Hole thirteen is a par 4 with a long fairway bunker/environmental (picture a bunker with large trees growing out of it) covering the entire right hand side of the fairway. A pond covers the left and back of this green and your second shot is challenging here, this was yet another green I landed short and watched the ball roll all the way off the green on the back. Hole fourteen is what I would consider the hardest hole on the course, this is a par 5 that severely dog legs left; if your drive is not dead straight here you are either in the woods on the right or water to the left. This hole is not reach able in two and your second shot needs to stay right to avoid woods and water. Hole fifteen is a medium par 3 with bunkers all over the front of the hole, this isn’t an overly hard hole but challenging if you don’t hit a good iron shot to the green. For hole sixteen you take a long cart ride through the woods, and sweep back to where the front of the course is to play a long par 3 that is pretty straight forward and not overly challenging. It is rare that you play back to back par 3′s, I generally like them split up to give you two breaks from hitting driver if you aren’t hitting it well that day. After a long drive where the cart path is part of the road in the neighborhood you come to hole seventeen. This is a short par 4 with a green tucked up next to the woods and slightly elevated. Hole eighteen is a gorgeous par 5 that brings you back to the club and River House, a large tree sits in the middle of this fairway and a huge lake lines the right of the fairway. This is a long par 5 and isn’t reachable in two by to many players but you will love the view on this hole.
After the round, I knew it was going to be ugly adding up the scorecard, and I came in at a 99 luckily staying away from triple digits. I haven’t played this bad in a few years but for how windy it was, and how bad my swing decided to be for the day I felt getting out under 100 was an accomplishment.
I think Easton club is a fun course, with very challenging holes. The course is shorter than most you play coming in at 6036 yards but it is challenging. I am more of a fan of courses that flow through wildlife and open area, but this course flows through a neighborhood and more of a populated area. I do feel as if Easton club is priced a little high, for the $10 more a round you can play a few nice courses in the area.