Course Tour

West Bend Lakes Golf Club hugs the banks of the Milwaukee River, featuring an 18-hole course surrounded by mature trees and diverse wildlife.

Hole 1

Black – 374 | White – 372 | Yellow – 362 | Red – 354

Opening par 4, mid length and fairly straight forward. The main trouble on the tee shot is the grouping of pine trees on the left which jut out into the fairway which consists of a carry of about 230 yards, but missing the fairway may not be so punishing. The approach shot consists of a green which will hold shots from a fair distance; it also has a false front made up of about the first 25 feet of the green. The main trouble on the approach shot is a greenside bunker short and left, and if the approach shot is hit over the green, it will make getting up and down much more difficult since there is a drop-off behind the green which will hide the pin along with a waste area with some significant vegetation. 

Hole 2

Black – 355 | White – 338 | Yellow – 314 | Red – 294 | Blue – 155

The second hole is a short par 4 with water along the left of the last 150 yards of the hole making any pulled shot trouble off the tee and approach. This is the first hole of few holes that will make you think. The best way to play the hole is to hit a shot on the right side of the fairway that will leave about 115 yards to the green, taking the water almost completely out of play and ensuring a better angle to the green from the fairway. One thing to be careful of off the tee is a grouping of four large trees that may be a good aiming point but if the tee shot is hit too far they will block the second shot. The green is fairly flat but will break toward the pond left of the green, and the back of the green has 2 tiers which makes a back location more difficult to putt to if on the wrong side of the green. 

Hole 3

Black – 146 | White – 130 | Yellow – 118 | Red – 106

This par 3 is fairly straight forward and will require at most a short to mid iron for the average player when there is little to no wind. The surface of the green is harder than others which when played downwind will require a higher trajectory or even landing the ball short of the green when the pin is in the front. The green has two tiers separated by a two foot ridge which makes the tee shot more delicate, but when the pin is close to the ridge on the right side it is possible to utilize the ridge to get the ball close to the hole. When putting up the ridge the putt will be first uphill then slightly downhill which makes getting the speed right much more difficult, but when going down the ridge the speed is easier to judge.

Hole 4

Black – 487 | White – 475 | Yellow – 460 | Red – 429

This hole can be easily reached in two with a good tee shot since it is a short par 5 and also plays slightly downhill. The tee shot prefers a right to left tee shot as it doglegs to the left; the only trouble is the long fescue to the left of the fairway which will eat any tee shot that is hit into it. If laying up for the second shot it is optimum to lay up to about 100 yards to take the pine trees on both sides of the narrow fairway within the last 75 yards of the fairway. When hitting the approach shot it is important to remember that mostly every shot hit past the green will release into the river, thus when going for the green in two it is important to hit a shot that will land just on the front of the green or even just short of it. This hole has not only a great view of the Milwaukee River but also has a plethora of crab apple trees by the tee boxes.

Hole 5

Black 397 | White 383 | Yellow 364 | Red 350

This hole is a mid-length par which doglegs to the right but it is possible to cut off the corner by hitting the tee shot over the two small pine trees on the mound right of the fairway, where there is a chute effect where a ball hit on target will kick forward, and a shot that is hit either a little right of left it will kick back on target. If a tee shot is aimed down the center of the fairway at the left 150 marker it is possible to go through the fairway and end up in the fairway bunker. When hitting the approach it is vital to make sure you hit the ball the right distance as there is a large mound on the right side of the green and a valley on the left side which are both difficult to putt through, and the green is somewhat long so be sure to club up when the pin is in the back of the green.

Hole 6

Black 393 | White 375 | Yellow 360 | Red 331

The 6th hole is a fairly open dogleg to the left; with the right target off the tee this hole is much easier. Where the dogleg is, there is a grouping of mounds that can be a good target to aim at since they will most likely kick the ball back toward the fairway or forward which will result in a shorter shot to the green. The main trouble off the tee is the large “Erickson” tree which can hinder a tee shot that is trying to cut off the dogleg; the safest line off the tee is the fairway bunker that is visible right down the center of the fairway. On the approach shot it is optimum to leave the ball below the hole especially if it is in the front part of the green as that is the most sloping part of the green. One last thing to remember on the approach is that there is a bunker and pond left of the green which will seem to funnel in a pulled approach shot.

Hole 7

Black 171 | White 157 | Yellow 144 | Red 110

This par 3 is fairly straight forward but with a few minor things to remember when playing the hole. On this hole it is vital to not short-side yourself as you will most likely receive a tight lie to a slightly perched green making it difficult to stop the ball quickly. If this hole requires you to hit a long iron try to land the ball short of the green as the ball can roll through the green and may end up in the river behind the green. The main trouble is the fescue to the left of the green, if the ball comes to rest in it, the player will have a downhill lie to a raised green. If possible try to land the ball on the green with some sort of a high shot as this green is not angled toward the tee box making it more difficult for the ball to stop on the green. This green has two small ridges that should be taken not of when trying to putt on it.

Hole 8

Black 317 | Silver 303 | Yellow 286 | Red 269 | Blue 100

With water to the left and right of the fairway on the 8th it’s all about deciding what yardage you want in to the hole or if driving the green is an option. It is extremely important to make sure the approach shot will be hit from the fairway as there is trouble shot and long of the green. This green will hold shots very well since it is usually the softest green on the course. If the hole is cut either in the front right where it is the shortest it is important to either hit the shot exactly like planned or to hit off to the left where there is more room where 2 putting will be not so difficult. When the pin is on the left side of the green it is important to not miss to the left side of the green as it will be a downhill lie to a green that is running away from you. The green is somewhat easy to putt on as is slopes gently to the front and to the right. A par can be a good score here; a birdie can also be achieved easily because of the short length and of the number of different ways to play the hole.

Hole 9

Black 489 | White 471 | Yellow 443 | Red 420

This par 5 is straight ahead with minimal trouble, and can be easily reached in two with a good tee shot. The trouble off the tee is a small pond beyond the grouping of young pine trees to the right of the fairway which is about 240 yards from the silver tee box. The optimum shot off the tee would be a small fade from the large blue pine tree ten yards left of the fairway, which will make sure the tee shot will be safely in play. The trickiest part of this hole is the approach shot as it will look short than it truly is due to a ridge in the fairway 25 yards short of the green. With a shot of less than 100 yards be sure to hit it hard enough and trust the yardage to make sure the illusion doesn’t make you come up short. The green is sloping from the back to the front for the majority of the green until the back portion which is sloped away from the fairway; when hitting a ball to a back location try to land the ball in the middle of the green as if it goes too far it will bounce hard over the green which will make getting up and down difficult.

Hole 10

Black 507 | White 497 | Yellow 449 |Red 442

To start off the back 9 we have the longest par 5 on the card and looks longer as the entire fairway is visible from the tee. There is minimal trouble from the tee, which would only include sparse tree lines right and left of the hole. It is helpful to hit a draw off the tee to maximize distance off the tee if intending to reach the green in two. If going for the green in two it is vital to not lose the ball to the left or right of the green as there are small ponds on both sides and a left greenside bunker. This green is also equipped with a false front which can help slow down low shots hit with a long iron especially when trying to reach in two; on the other hand it can be harmful when hitting short irons or wedges as the ball may spin down the front of the green. As of last of fall the decision was made to make the green longer and wider which will make the hole easier once it is complete. A par on the 10th is a good score.

Hole 11

Black 394 | White 375 | Yellow 364 | Red 335

The 11th hole is all about getting into good position for the second shot to a green that has trouble all around it. The key is to position the tee shot down the right side of the fairway to stay away from the large pines that can hinder a shot to the green if coming in from the left side. Bailing out to the right of the fairway will be not as bad as missing left since the tree line is denser on the left. The approach shot is to a green that after the first few paces, it will run away from the fair, therefore it is safer to hit the ball short of the hole rather than past it. Finally the green is fairly flat with subtle breaks, so on shorter putts it will help to hit them with more pace.

Hole 12

Black 499 | White 490 | Yellow 456 |Red 390

This par 5 is the last on the course so it is a good idea to take advantage of the last scoring opportunity before the heart of the narrow back 9. This hole is one of two that have out-of-bounds on them; this one has it on the right side, making it vital to keep the ball to the left to end up with a good score on the hole. This is a relatively short par 5, so a tee shot is not hit that well can still play as an easy three shot hole. After the tee shot the player must decide to lay up or go for the green, a thing to remember is the massive tree just to the right of the fairway is even with the 200 yard marker. When laying up the thing to remember is that the water comes into play 120 yards from the green. On the approach shot it is important to hit short of the hole to leave an uphill putt as this green slopes severely back to front. When on the green, try to capitalize on uphill putts and with sweeping and downhill putts it’s all about the pace to leave a tap in for a 2 putt.

Hole 13

Black 397 | White 383 | Yellow 331 | Red 300

This hole is all about keeping the ball in play even if means hitting less than driver off the tee. The safest place to aim off the tee are the mounds that can be seen through the fairway as the leaves the largest margin of error where the ball can be in play. It is important to take note of the wind on the tee shot as it is hard to tell wind conditions from the right side of the fairway in some cases due to the trees right of the fairway. The approach shot is also about putting the ball in the middle of the green; as hitting the ball to the right will leave a tight lie to a green running away from the player and a shot hit left of the green will often go into the hazard. The green slopes toward the water hazard with the one exception being the back right portion of the green as it slopes in the completely opposite direction.

Hole 14

Black 393 | White 380 | Yellow 362 | Red 324

This is one of the most demanding par 4’s on the course behind the 18th since it is very narrow and with a back pin location the hole can play 20 yards longer since this green is 43 yards deep. The tee shot requires a right to left shot with trees lining both sides of the hole. In some cases, it is a good option to lay up with a smaller club to make sure the ball will be in play for the second shot especially when the pin is located in the front of the green which can make the approach two clubs less. Also, it is important to take note where the pin is because there is a ridge in the front third of the green which can create an illusion of where the pin is. It is also important to hit a solid approach shot to this green with both trouble right and left. Putting on this green is all about reading the right amount of break and trusting the line, the green will tend to break to the right where the low area is.

Hole 15

Black 329 | White 314 | Yellow 282 | Red 276

Similar to the 8th hole this is a short par 4 which for some people may be drivable or at least leave a pitch to the green. The thing to watch out for on the tee box is a hazard which is a small creek that runs through the fairway at 120 yards to the green. When taking driver from the tee the bailout will be to the right as this is where the trouble minimizes, so a left to right shot is preferred. When laying up from the tee box the tee shot should be hit about 180 yards to keep the ball in the safest location. The approach is fairly straight forward but it is better off to be short of the hole since there is a drop off behind the green. The green has a natural break from back to front which should be taken note of when trying to make pin high putts.

Hole 16

Black 160 | White 148 | Yellow 116 | Red 98

This is the first of two par 3’s in a row and is also the shorter of the two, but the tee shot may be more demanding than that of the next hole. This green has a large false front where the ball can dig in and feed right back off the front of the green. Some people may choose to hit more club and bump the ball into the slope of the green and stop it at a front or middle hole location. It is important to not go long or left of this green since the green is perched up a few feet higher than the rough around the green and it will leave a shot where the green is running away. When putting on this green, it’s all about having the right pace and trusting the line, as a missed put can leave a testy come back with the green breaking as strong as it does.

Hole 17

Black 181 | White 167 | Yellow 154 | Red 128

This is the longest par 3 on the course but with a high left to right shot can hold the green and leave a gradually breaking putt for birdie. This hole always seems to play a half club longer since it is all carry distance and a ball hit short will stop almost right when it lands. The best place to bail out is left of the green which will leave an uphill chip shot; thus starting the ball left of the green and attempting to work it to the right is the optimum shot for the hole. The green is fairly simple to read as it is a small but consistent slope to the large pond left of the green. A par on the 17th will be a good score and will give you a leg up against your playing partners.

Hole 18

Black 467 | White 436 | Yellow 408 | Red 345

This is the most difficult and longest par 4 on the course by about 75 yards, demanding a good tee shot and a solid approach shot; some will play this as a three shot par 4. The tee shot required from the silver and black tee boxes is a high right to left shot as the hole plays slightly uphill. If the tee shot is hit too far left or right it will bring trees and water into play which will further make this hole more difficult, but with correctly placed tee shot this hole can be easily managed. The second shot also plays uphill and requires a high trajectory shot to hold this green from a longer distance, there are also two greenside bunkers that will catch a short shot. There is also a half mooned shape pond to the right of the green that will come into play if the player loses a long iron shot to the right. The green is fairly flat but is slightly raised which will make the ball want to roll towards the edge of the green.