It has been a spring of new courses for me in 2014 and last weekend was no exception as I ventured west to Kanata to tackle The Marshes Golf Club for the first time.
While I had a couple of opportunities to play The Marshes last summer, the course struggled with their greens and I chose to stay away. All reports coming out of the course on conditions this spring have been positive so it seemed like a good time to see what the course had to offer.
As a course that sits in the middle of Kanata it doesn’t feel crammed into a city. It is not overly tight and a good portion of the course is in semi wooded areas with separation from the course and surrounding houses and office buildings. There are a few exceptions to this, the main one being the dramatic 8th hole par 3 with office towers looming just behind the green. Surprisingly, I found this added to the hole, rather than detracted from it.
As one would expect from a course that has green fee + cart costs of $90 – $120* the conditions, from tee to green were excellent, especially for mid May of a golf season that started almost a month late. The only complaint was the greens were pretty shaggy, causing them to be slow and not rolling very true. I suspect this is a result of a conservative approach to greens management based on last years issues. I am looking forward to getting out to the course again when the greens have been cleaned up a little more.
The course itself is not overly hard, yet extremely hard at times (Par 72 Rating 71 Slope 125), which makes it an interesting mix of scoring opportunities and just holding on and grinding it out. The course also features the unique layout of 6 par 3s, 6 par 4s and 6 par 5s, which I loved. The hardest hole on the course, and potentially in Ottawa is the par 5 2nd, which plays 615 from the blues, featuring water down the right hand side from tee to green.
My day went quite well, if uninspiring. I put together a very neat and tidy 79, with no birdies and playing the par 3s 3 over.
See you at the turn,