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Estes Park Golf Courses


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Itís all about the elk at Estes Park Golf Course. Golfers are often outnumbered by the big animals and have to play shots around the slow moving obstructions. Elk graze on the fairway grass and lie under the trees watching golfers play through.

In the mornings and afternoons, herds are often so plentiful that golfers have to walk carefully around the animals. 

    (Click Photos to Enlarge)

Elk play free here!   

The 6,326-yard, par 71 course is located on a plateau above town and Lake Estes. From the wide fairways golfers can marvel at the soaring rocky peaks surrounding the course that was built on what was once a high mountain air field. 

Noted Colorado architect Henry Hughes designed it in 1957 but in 1991, another Colorado designer Dick Phelps modified the course adding large mounds more water features and a total of 27 bunkers. Because of its lower mountain elevation Estes Park Golf Course can open by mid-April, much earlier than other mountain courses.

The course was recognized in the "Golf Book of Lists" authored by Mitch Kaplan as the sixth most beautiful golf courses in the nation. Other courses included Pebble Beach, Kauai Prince, The Greenbrier and Pasatiempo in Southern California. For seven-day advance tee times call 970-586-8146.  To reach the course take Highway 7 a half mile south of town and turn left toward the course. Follow the road through the townhouses and past the driving range to the large log clubhouse.    

In addition to the "big course" the nine hole Lake Estes Golf Course runs along the Big Thompson River as it flows into the lake. That 4,418-yard executive course is on the east side of town off Highway 34. It opens earlier in the spring and stays open later in the fall.  Call 970-586-8176 for additional information on Lake Estes Golf Course

Lake Estes Nine


 If you really want to play among the elk as well as along the lake and river, try the nine hole Lake Estes Golf Course. It runs along the Big Thompson River as it flows into the lake.

Located away from the big 18-hole course, the 4,418-yard executive course is on the east side of town off Highway 34. It opens earlier in the spring and stays open later in the fall. Uniquely, the course closes in mid-September for a couple weeks due to so many elk and tourists concentrating on the little course. 

Call 970-586-8176 for additional information on Lake Estes Golf Course

Estes Park Offers Inexpensive and Nearby Mountain Golf
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With gas prices still high, this may not be the best summer to drive east to visit relatives. (What summer is?)

Colorado is the best place in America to play golf in the summer, especially in the mountains.

This summer, many Colorado golfers are going to be picky about how far they will drive to play and what they have to pay to play when they get there.

Probably the best combination of a short drive, great scenery and reasonably-priced mountain golf is in Estes Park.  It is one of the first mountain course to clear of snow. The fairways are wide and open. Unlike many mountain courses, Estes Park's two courses are not bordered by thick groves of aspen and lodgepole pine. In fact, the fairways are so open the area where the 18-hole course is located was once an airport.  The golf course clubhouse and restaurant building are known as the Hangar Restaurant.

Instead of mountain views from elevated tee boxes, the views here are from open fairways of the very elevated mountains surrounding the course.

And while you may get to see occasional wildlife at other mountain courses, you are guaranteed to see wildlife here--really big wildlife.

Itís all about the elk at the Estes Park courses.

Golfers are often outnumbered by the big animals. Part of the thrill here is playing shots away from and around the massive, moving obstructions.

Elk graze on the fairway grass and lie under the trees watching golfers play through. When elk want to move, the golfers watch and move accordingly. In the mornings and afternoons, herds on the big course are often so plentiful that golfers have to walk carefully around the animals.

Elk play free here!

The 6,326-yard, par 71 course is located on a plateau above the town and Lake Estes. From the wide fairways golfers can marvel at the soaring rocky peaks surrounding the course.

Noted Colorado architect Henry Hughes designed it in 1957 but in 1991, another Colorado designer Dick Phelps modified the course adding large mounds, more water features and a total of 27 bunkers.

For seven-day advance tee times call 970-586-8146. Green fee specials change during the season and are advertised in this issue.  

To reach the course take Highway 7 a half mile south of town and look for the sign. Follow the road through the townhouses and slowly past the driving range to the large log clubhouse.

In addition to the "big course" the nine hole Lake Estes Golf Course runs along the Big Thompson River as it flows into the lake. That 4,418-yard executive course is on the east side of town off Highway 34.

While the 18 hole course has some water hazards, at the Lake Estes course a really fast moving water hazard comes into play on a few holes.  In fact,, one hole requires a tee shot from under a towering tree, over the rushing river to an island green.

While the Lake Estes course gets lots of play, it is really popular with non-golfing spectators in the fall when the elk herds take over the course. last year, the course officials gave in to the elk and visitors and closed the course a couple weeks early for safety reasons.

The Lake Estes course has specials in the spring and fall and afternoon green fees. Call 970-586-8176 for additional information on Lake Estes Golf Course.

 





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