7 of Southern Minnesota’s best golf holes

Published 8:58am Monday, August 20, 2012

Wedgewood Cove Golf Course

Hole 4 is the first par-5 hole players encounter at the newest golf course in the region. It is 467 yards from the white tees, 487 from blue and 506 from black.

Course pro Donnie Teeter said the hole provides a risk-reward factor, and for players who succeed, an eagle is achievable. Hole 4, though, has four ponds. “Watch out” is an understatement.

There is one immediately in front of the tee, one on the left early along, one midway on the right and another on the left protecting the green.

“Players of all levels struggle with it and have great success with it, depending on the day,” Teeter said.

A conservative player can hit two safe shots around water, then a third toward the broad and welcoming right side of the green. Two putts, and they have par.

An aggressive player can hit 286 yards over the pond on the left — but don’t accidentally fade right into right-side drink — then nail another about the same distance over the next pond on the left and a pair of bunkers. Make the green, a solid putt means an eagle. Miss the green, birdie remains within reach.

Teeter said he witnesses stronger players going for it lose their place in the order to players who stayed safe. They ended up in the water, rough or bunkers.

“This one rewards players who plan the hole well,” he said.

The green peaks in the center, then goes away on the back side. Players have to account for uphill, then downhill if landing on the part away from bunkers.

Teeter made the green in two shots. Noting the long green, he said, “but I’m far from done.”

The course architects worked for Gill Design Inc. of River Falls, Wis. Wedgewood Cove is considered a links course, using water, bunkers and undulating hills to challenge golfers, rather than merely trees and ponds like many courses in the region.

This is the second of a seven-part series featuring the best golf holes in southern Minnesota.