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Golf Course Review: English Turn Golf & Country Club

I got a call recently about some concerns with the conditions at English Turn. Yesterday was as good a day as any, especially since Golf Nola has not reviewed English Turn since back in January.

First, let me give everyone a piece of advice if you decide to play in this heat. Eat before you play and stay hydrated. Even though we did this, after about 12 holes we were both getting tired. By the time we finished, we were worn out. The temperature itself wasn't that bad with the breeze that was blowing all day, however, with the humidity when the wind died down, at times it was brutal. It seemed like no matter how much water or Gatorade I drank it wasn't enough.

Everything was normal when arriving. There is a bag drop you could use or the guys come to your car to get your bag loaded up on a cart. The outside staff is always great at English Turn. The inside staff however during this visit was not great. The person that checked me in was nice but appeared like he didn't want to be there. The thing that really stood out to me, however, and this may just be a pet peeve of mine, is he didn't bother to stand up and greet me. He stayed sitting down at about the height of a dining table while I was purchasing range balls and getting my cart key. I find that unprofessional and when you work in any customer service-oriented job not a good look. Not even a mention of what end the range was set up on, that there would be no beverage cart on the course, or that the turn house would be open.

The girl at the turn house was great. Friendly, smiling, and made me feel she was happy to see me. I was offered extra ice for the cooler on the cart as she notified me there would be no beverage cart on the course. Something that is apparently normal Monday through Thursday. Not sure why when it is so hot outside right now. Every course in July and August should have a beverage cart every day. We all know the last thing they want is someone having a heat stroke on the golf course. However, once you are made aware and the golf cart has a cooler you grab enough drinks to get you through 9-holes then load up again at the turn.

Tee Boxes: 3 out of 5

Even though many of the tee boxes were good there were many that were not. Some of the par 3 holes were more sand than grass. The grass is very thin right now due to the lack of rain. The non-par-3 holes were decent and on some of them, the grass was a bit on the long side but still thin. Teeing up a 3-wood you couldn't really tee the ball down to the ground without grass getting in the way. The par-3 holes you had to use a tee. Something I am not used to doing as I like to just put the ball on the ground. All in all the tee boxes were playable just not what you'd like to see. Hopefully, we get some rain soon to help the grass grow thicker so maintenance can cut the tee boxes how they would like to.

Fairways: 4 out of 5

The fairways were very good. They were not cut tight but they can keep the fairways longer to keep them from burning out and dying like the tee boxes. The ball would sit up on top of the grass and give you a decent lie 90% of the time. There were only a few times I was worried about the grass height as the ball may have been sitting up in a fluffy spot. When the grass is fluffy it leaves a chance you could hit the ball high on the clubface as the ball is not all the way down on the turf. This will cause the ball to come up short. There were a few brownish spots in some areas and some of the approach areas had new sod laid down where it looked like they may have lost some grass. You can see this very clearly in the video below.

Rough: 4 out of 5

The rough was thick and a real challenge. A challenge deciding how the ball will react coming out of the grass and a challenge finding a ball in some areas where the golf ball would really fall underneath the grass. In some of the areas of the rough you had to stand over the ball to end up seeing it. The rough really wasn't that deep or that thick in most areas. It was just how the grass was standing up that made the ball hard to see sometimes. Shots on the other hand would take some extra effort or you may catch a flier and the ball jumps out. I personally like rough on a golf course, especially around the greens instead of everything shaved to fairway height. At English Turn with the smaller greens, it puts an emphasis on accuracy and a good short game to score well.

Greens 4.5 out of 5

The greens were great. They rolled smoothly and had a good speed to them. The only reason I do not give them a 5 is the collars of several greens were chewed up or the grass was dead. You could tell this is something they are working on as the approach areas that were sodded were near the edge of those greens where the collar didn't look so good. None of this affected putting as the pin placements were not near these areas. Unfortunately for the purpose of the video, I lost the footage of some extra putts but I was able to get some chip shots in there so you can see for yourself how the greens were as far as speed and smoothness. It was great to see the greens this good. They must run the sprinklers more often on them than the rest of the course. This is understandable since the greens are the most important aspect of a golf course to golfers.

The only true disappointment for the entire day is the fact that range balls were not included. When the green fees at any golf course get over $65 dollars range balls should be included. The asking rate for the day was $84 plus tax. Range balls are a part of the amenities that golfers remember when a rate gets to a certain point. Other than that, and the heat, it was a good day out at English Turn.

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