Waterchase Golf Club (Fort Worth, TX on 09/22/13)

I didn’t have much planned as far courses that I wanted to play for my Sunday morning round. Part of it was that I was busy with the rest of the trip and the other part is that I didn’t know where we would be staying on Saturday night. We ended up staying by the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport and I got a chance to look around at some tee times the night before. I wanted to find an early morning tee time to allow me to catch my late afternoon flight without rushing. It seemed that Waterchase, Texas Star, and Golf Club of Dallas were my best choices based on available tee times and my price range. Waterchase had an opening at 8:00am for one player and I ended up taking that one.

It took maybe 20 minutes without any traffic to get to the course and it is right off of I-30 so it’s really convenient and would be a good stop if passing through town. I typically don’t comment about the staff, clubhouse, or beverage services because those aren’t important to me, but I do feel the need to say that the folks in the shop were rude. They didn’t exchange any pleasantries with me and didn’t even tell me the amount they were charging my credit card for when I checked in. I knew what I was getting into with the price and checked my receipt after to make sure it was correct, but I’ve never had anyone take my money without telling me the price first. Anyway, I made my way over to the 1st tee and decided to play the Gold tees at 6882/73.1/132 which is one set up from the tournament tees. It was a beautiful morning as it was around 60 degrees, no wind, and not a cloud in the sky.

The 1st hole played directly into the sun so all I could do is squint, but I noticed that the 1st hole is beautifully bunkered off the tee and around the green. So right away, it seemed that the course would have some character. The course then starts getting tough with a long carry over water on the par 3 2nd which plays about 200 yards. The 3rd plays through the woods and has an intimidating tee shot. The hole is a 537 yard par 5 and requires a combination of precise shots to avoid a big number. The tee shot opens up the farther someone hits it down the fairway, but the angle from the Gold tees required me to hit it high over some trees or move it right to left. The 2nd shot has to be played down the very right side of the hole and far enough to allow for a short iron approach over a large tree on the far side of a ravine. Any shots caught up in the tree will drop into the hazard. The 4th is a short par 4 that plays through a chute of trees on the tee shot to a hidden fairway and the 5th is a 424 yard par 4 that was miserable to play. The hole is a dogleg right but requires a layup to avoid running through the fairway and it has a water hazard that starts about 200 yards from the tee. This forces someone to play left leaving a longer distance into an already long hole. The 6th is a 514 yard par 5 with water all down the right, but it turned out to be a fair hole as there was an option to miss left. The 8th is a 404 yard par 4 that moves left and is another hole where I was uncomfortable off the tee. It played to a blind fairway needing a 220 yard carry over a bunker on the left but hitting it that distance would put me in trouble with a miss right. That left me hitting a long iron off the tee to the neck of the fairway. The front nine closed with one of the better holes on the course. The 9th is a 410 yard par 4 with a split fairway. It gave me an option to lay it up or fly driver over the fairway bunker to a downslope for a short iron in. The green complex has a waterfall off to the right which is a nice aesthetic touch. The 10th is a 610 yard par 5 with trouble everywhere. I’d like a few more cracks at this hole to see if I could figure it out. After my first go, it ranks up there with one of the worst par 5’s that I recall playing (like Diablo Grande Ranch #12). There is a split fairway with only the bigger hitters being able to get to the right fairway from the tee. A normal distance tee shot down the left side ends up being blocked out by a tree in the center of the hole if trying to get to the right side to lay it up. If playing down the left side any layup with more than 150 yards in (even from the fairway) is blocked out. The 11th is a short par 4 with the left side of the fairway blocked out by a tree in front of the tee and then there is a tree in the greenside bunker. After the 11th there are some holes that I liked more. The 12th is a great short par 3 to an elevated green and the 14th is a 197 yard par 3 that rewards a solid long iron but isn’t too harsh. The 16th is a 154 yard par 3 to a green with as much slope as anyone could want so it tests the short game. The 17th plays to a split fairway with the shorter route having to go over water, but it turned out to look harder than it played. The 18th hole is a closing par 5 that needed a layup short of a ravine to a green that is on the other side of the waterfall.

The course was the best maintained course of the seven that I played on the trip. The tees were cut down, the fairways gave a perfect lie, and the greens were smooth and quick. I had a couple downhill putts from 15 or 20 feet where I was just trying to two putt because of the speed of the greens. It is one of those courses where not a blade of grass seemed out of place. Besides some of the quirky holes the challenges came from the rough and the firm greens. The rough was not thick but it grabbed the club a couple times and slowed it down. I would say any course in this kind of shape is worth a play once and no one should be upset playing here knowing it is in perfect shape. That is where my compliments end as the course is a mess off the tee with seemingly no thought given for an amateur to play here. I see this as a controversial course and definitely something to talk about.

#1 green looking back:


#3 approach:
#6 green:
#9 approach:
#11 approach:
#18 green:

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