Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Avalon Golf Links in Burlington, Washington State , August golf round - Is Avalon a good golf course to play ?

Avalon Golf Links in Burlington , Washington State

While spending some time in WA I was able to sign up for a couple tournaments in the area with a small private tour. One of the places we will play is a course named Avalon Golf Links in Burlington WA.

I remember that I played there many years ago with a different tournament series, but it has been so long, that I wanted to refresh my memory and play a practice round for the upcoming tournament there.

The day we picked was overcast and I first thought we will run into rain. Since we had a prepaid special through, we did not have much choice and took off about 100 minutes before our scheduled tee off time.

From where we were the driving time showed 60 minutes on our GPS. In order to warm up I wanted to be there a little earlier.

We played on a weekday, which left us with almost no traffic when going up there. With a tee off at 1 40 pm I was a little concerned to get stuck in Everett , WA. However, all went well. From Seattle it is a straight shot up north in Interstate 5 . Take an exit, do a couple turns and you are right there.

When we got there we found that the parking lot was busy but not more than ⅓ full. Everything looked nice and well kept. I found my way to the pro shop to sign up and only had to wait 1 minute before an assistant offered me help. I liked that.

I showed him my print out and he confirmed my rate. Which was 17 $ including cart. A really good rate. Usually you need to add 14 $ to the 17 $ per rider. My mother accompanied us with the hope to be able to ride with us.

I asked the staff member and he told me that it is no problem, but she would have to pay for the full cart fee, 14 $. Coming from Florida I am always shocked when I hear how much they charge for the carts in WA. Although I have no explanation for it, I begin to believe that it is an insurance problem in this state. But , I do not know , so I will not comment further. We still had a good deal going. I bought a yardage guide for 1 $ . It is not exactly anything professional, but helps you to navigate the course. Also we bought 1 large bucket to warm up for which the price was normal as well.

We were told that we can tee off any time, starting with the South course and then continue with the North Course.

Off to the range, which was easy to find and looked pretty ok. Not exactly top , but they had grass tees which I actually prefer. I found 5 targets to shoot for. That helps to warm up with the important clubs.

There was absolutely no wait time on the tee. We drove over there and got of right away.

The tee boxes were all ok. Nothing extra ordinary. Nice and green and mostly flat and well groomed. The fairways also were nicely groomed. Always remember that this is not a high end country club.

The greens were of ok speed. Maybe 9 or so. Nothing compared to the courses I usually play, but all in good shape and rolling nicely.

I really liked the South course. It has challenging holes. Plenty of big old trees which make  some tee shots really interesting. The immediate rough is not to bad. Just stay away from the deep grass. Most I liked the nature setting and the views. This course sits up and you can see over the valley.

In regards to playing ability, the South course offers wide open fairways if you play from the tee box which fits your handicap. I played the green tees for practice and had no problem to navigate the course or reach the greens. My family played the forward tees and they cruised along nicely having fun.

We played this course in roughly 2 hours. Maybe a little under and we did not have to rush. At first there was nobody behind us and it almost felt like we were alone on the course. Later I saw some players on our side, but they never caught up with us.

At the turn we used the restrooms and I thought they were ok. Not overly special, but on that day at that time they were clean, like the rest of the facility which I was able to look at. We did not stay long and did not buy anything in the restaurant.

Again there was nobody at the tee and we browsed right though. The North course I thought was a little different. More trees around you no views, a little more water.  Other than that this side was also in good shape and I was satisfied with tee boxes, fairways and greens.  On this side a beverage cart finally caught up with us. A very friendly young girl offered all kinds of beverages. I had a beer and the price of 2.75 $ was good. She came by another couple times, but I did not get anything else. I liked the fact that she was smiling, watching for golfers who were playing, not pushy and dressed for the occasion.

Again we got done in a good time. All together we spend 4 hours and 15 minutes playing this two sides.

Overall I was pleased with the course, the customer service and the friendliness of the staff. I did not spend much time in the pro shop, but from what I saw, they were stocked decently and the restaurant looked nice too. Little small, but as clean and inviting as the reset of the facility.

When I left I thought I will say a word to the head professional. But other than his staff, he did not seem to be interested to make eye contact or talk. I left it with that. He might have been busy.

It was a good experience for the price we got. I would not pay more than 40 $ including cart for this course though. As nice as the setting is, the parking availability, the quality of course and practice facility and friendliness of the staff. For more regular play the course would be to far away from Seattle. It seems like it is more used by locals. When we left it was very busy with what looked liked different golf schools and groups.

If you are in the area and have time to drive up there, do it.  But make sure you go on to get some good rates.

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