While it is best
known as the annual host of the Bell
Canadian Open, the Town of Oakville is as diverse a
golfing community as one could find here in Ontario. Located
just a short drive west of the City of Toronto, Oakville
is the home to some of the area’s top championship
courses, some challenging executive layouts as well as the
Canadian Golf Hall of Fame.
The now legendary Glen
Abbey Golf Club, considered by many to be Canada’s
top public course, has hosted the Canadian Open 23 times
and has become known as the home course to Canada’s
National Open (although the RCGA has recently begun rotating
the event to other venues as well). Known for its breathtaking
‘Valley Holes’, the Abbey uses a combination
of open, receptive fairways, steep bunkering and undulating
fairways to challenge players. This course has many of the
characteristics that have become the design hallmark of
its designer, golfing legend Jack Nicklaus. Glen Abbey was
his first solo course design back in 1976.
Abbey has also become revered as the home of Tiger
Woods’ ‘The Shot of 2000’. On the
72nd hole of the 2000 Canadian Open, Tiger hit a jaw-dropping
6 iron 218 yards out of a fairway bunker over water
to clinch the Open title and the rare Triple Crown of
golf (Canadian, British and US Opens all in the same
calendar year). Visitors to the Glen Abbey Golf Club
are often seen dropping a few balls into the fairway
bunker at 18 to see if they can re-create Tiger’s
18th Hole - Glen Abbey Golf
Glen Abbey will also host the
100th anniversary Bell
Canadian Open in September 2004. The RCGA’s flagship
event, the Bell Canadian Open annually plays host to a strong
field of the PGA Tour’s best players. The course also
boasts quite a distinguished list of past champions with
names include Woods, Norman, O’Meara, Strange, Lietzke,
Trevino and Nick Price.
The grounds at Glen Abbey are
also home to the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame. Dedicated to
preserving the rich history of the game of golf in this
country, the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame traces the foundations
of the game from its European origins all the way to the
modern-day stars that are shaping the sport today.
Yet Oakville isn’t a one-trick
pony when it comes to great golf. A myriad of local clubs
provide golfers with a number of other great courses to
9th Hole - Deerfield Golf
Golf Club is located just off the QEW at Bronte
Road. One of the busiest courses in the area, Deerfield
is a fairly wide-open layout that boasts some wonderful
holes, especially of the water variety.
Both the 1st and 10th holes begin their respective
nines with par 5s that require a good carry over water
in order to make the green. A solid tee shot is required
to have a shot at the par 5s in two.
The 2nd hole is par 3 that wraps
around an ominous lake. The green slopes steeply from right
to left as well making your first lag putt very important.
The 9th is another good par 3 (pictured above), that has
about a 150 yard or so of carry across to a green that sloped
fairly sharply from back to front.
Just around the corner is Saw-Whet
Golf Club that is known for a wonderful set of closing
holes. Number 15 is a short par 3 that sports a massive
heavily undulating green. This one is a little trickier
than it looks. The drive on the next hole, the long par
5 -16th, must carry a large valley to a heavily sloped fairway.
Make sure you strike a good drive to keep the ball at the
top of the hill on this one. Number 17 is a par 3 that is
pure death for anyone who goes OB – the woods just
left of the green. And the par 4 18th is a nice finishing
hole that requires a precision tee shot, to keep it on the
right-to-left sloped fairway.
An underrated course for those
of you with a tighter schedule is Oakville
Executive Golf Club. It boasts not only an 18-hole par
61 executive layout but also a full par 36 9-hole course
called Angel’s View. Normally in great shape, Oakville
Exec is a pretty solid spot if you want to get in a quick
round without having to book a tee time too far in advance.
The par 5 7th and par 4 8th on the Angel’s View are
not to be missed.
the area is Royal
Ontario Golf Club. Built in the tradition of Kaneff
Golf’s signature Lionhead layout, Royal Ontario
is still a little rough around the edges but has a wonderful
layout that should make it a contender in years to come.
The dual par 5 - 9th and 18th holes, are near mirrors
of each other. They provide a sort of a stadium feel
as you and your group finish each nine.
1st Hole - Royal Ontario
Oaks Golf Club is ideally situated right at the corner
of Dundas Street and Ninth Line for either a quick nine
holes and just to hit a few balls at the range. This nine
is a short course that plays to a par 30 with only three
For those with club affiliations,
Oakville also boasts a couple of the area’s best private
courses. Including the Oakville
Golf Club (the home club to Canada’s own Sandra
Post), the Wyldewood Golf
& Country Club and the Trafalgar
Golf & Country Club.
here for a complete listing of Oakville, Ontario golf courses