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  • Paul Graham-Fielding

Calgary - Rolling countryside isn't just for cowboys

A vibrant and lifestyle-oriented city within view of the magnificent Rocky Mountains, Calgary is the largest city in the province of Alberta. Most famous as the home of the Calgary Stampede, the city is also recognised as a mecca for fantastic golf and we have compiled a list of the must play tracks when you are in Canada’s western city.

Heritage Pointe Golf Club

Situated just minutes south of Calgary, Heritage Pointe features 27 holes made up of three distinct nine-hole loops. The Desert Nine has a definite Scottish feel to it, complete with fescue grass, natural mounding and deep wall bunkers.

Strategy and nerves are the most important clubs in your bag on this traditional test. If magnificent vistas and elevation changes are to your liking then The Heritage Nine will suit you well. With holes running along water, intimidating cliffs and stunning views to distract your attention, this picturesque route will leave you awestruck.

The common theme to The Pointe Nine is the backdrop of Pine Creek, with holes climbing in and out of the valley, and working through a verdant forest. Several holes require navigation of the creek including one hole which has you cross the water five times. Voted one of Canada’s premier public courses, Heritage Pointe is a track all Calgarians are proud of.

The Links at Gleneagles

As you venture west of city centre and the majestic Rocky Mountains come into view, you will arrive shortly in the village of Cochrane Alberta, home of the Links at Gleneagles. Rated as a top ten public course in Canada, you have views of those Rocky Mountains from all 18 holes on the golf course.

An outstanding layout, this Les Furber design finds a true harmony between playability and challenge. With five par 5’s and five par 3’s, this par 72 championship track features lush fairways, over 100 white sand bunkers and holes that run along a 200 foot cliff that overlooks the incredible Bow River.

The PGA Tour like putting surfaces will test your ability to read break as well as understand speed control, for they are undulating and fast, to further enhance your experience. Just 30 minutes from Calgary, The Links at Gleneagles is a must play for all fans of the game.

D’Arcy Ranch

Just 20 minutes south of Calgary lies the bedroom community of Okotoks Alberta and the D’Arcy Ranch Golf Course. With unencumbered views of the remarkable Rocky Mountains as the backdrop, you will be immersed in the natural feel of the tree lined fairways that make up this incredible foothill layout.

Designed with the full intent of having national stature in Canadian golf, the championship design has hosted the Canadian Tour on several occasions and is a wonderful test for players of all abilities.

With five sets of tees you can be assured of finding a length that will allow you to enjoy the majestic views while negotiating your way through the myriad of slopes and water hazards that are a natural part of this fantastic golf course.

Redwood Meadows Golf & Country Club

Ever dream of playing a golf course in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains where the water hazards are filled with crystal clear water from mountain fed streams and the views are breathtaking? Well dream no longer, just minutes southwest of the city of Calgary is the town of Bragg Creek and the beautiful Redwood Meadows Golf and Country Club. A collection of eighteen unique holes, the design is one of continuity and seamless transition where your game may be witnessed by a wide array of wildlife that claim the ever-present redwood trees as their year-round home.

So, go ahead and dream of the picturesque course, then book a tee time at Redwood Meadows and all your dreams will become reality.

The Canal at Delacour Golf Club

The community of Delacour is only seven minutes from the boundary of Calgary and is the site of The Canal Golf Club. With water in play on twelve holes, one may feel intimidated or even fearful, but with five sets of tees, there is a length of play to accommodate all levels of ability.

The highly receptive and undulating bent grass greens have been recognized as one of the best set of putting surfaces in the region and with good reason. The PGA tour quality complexes are consistently groomed to perfection and roll as purely as one would expect considering the high accolades bestowed upon them. The challenge begins from the first tee however as you look out over fescue covered mounds to recognize that the safest place is in the middle of the Kentucky Bluegrass fairways.

Locals recommend playing the layout more than one time to fully appreciate the subtleties and beauty of its design, and the Club is completely in favor of your doing so.

Sirocco Golf Club

Situated in the borough of Foothills on the outskirts of Calgary, the Sirocco Golf Club is a stunning tribute to the rolling terrain of this mountainside territory. Carved through stands of deciduous trees with creeks meandering throughout the holes, you will have the sense of being immersed in a remote natural setting all the while the skyline of the city is in the background.

When renowned architect Bill Robinson was tasked with construction of this championship track, he couldn’t be faulted for wearing a permanent smile, such is the natural attractiveness of this property. His creation will delight you as well, for its challenge as well as its recognition of the original landscape that was merely tweaked to arrive at the finished product, a product that you will want to experience time and time again.

 The Winston Golf Club

Perhaps most accurately described as an inner-city oasis, this championship track was formerly known as the Calgary Elks Golf Club. A mature parkland style layout, with Nose Creek bisecting several holes along the way, the Winston is largely recognized as the premier metropolitan course within the city limits and in fact the voting isn’t even close.

The re-design in 1992 by lauded architect Les Furber brought the facility to modern day playability levels and with four sets of tee boxes, this is a test worthy of all skill sets. With massive nearly 100 years old trees, several water hazards and strategically placed bunkers, you will be treated to a walk in the park that is as serene and peaceful as can be experienced while submerged in a city of well over one million inhabitants.

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