Located just off the QEII about an hour and fifteen minutes from Edmonton and an hour and fifty minutes from Calgary, you will find the Wolf Creek Golf Resort.
Wolf Creek is home to two great Rod Whitman designed courses that bring the feel of Scottish golf to the heart of central Alberta. Whitman is a renowned Canadian golf course architect who
learned his craft from the likes of, Pete Dye and Bill Coore.
"The most enduring golf courses aren't created on a drawing board in a downtown office," says Whitman. "They're built by golf architects who spend an extraordinary amount of time on-site, in the dirt, throughout an entire project. It's the guys with dirt under their nails who will never build the worst courses and have a better chance to build the best."
Whitman’s first solo design was the Old Course at Wolf Creek which opened for play in 1983. The Old Course is an example of Whitman’s appreciation for the great links courses of the United Kingdom and boasts, rolling fairways lined by fescue, pot bunkers and small undulating greens where often your best bet is to roll your ball up onto them.
This course and the resort gained notoriety by hosting one of the more popular stops on the PGA Tour Canada schedule for 13 straight years starting in the 1980’s. Today’s player is forced to think his/her way around the course as accuracy is at more of a premium to shoot low scores than a power. A great example of this approach is perhaps one of the most photographed and challenging holes on the Old Course, the 385 yard par-4 fourth aptly named, “Hawks Alley.” (images below)
Accuracy is at a premium on this beautiful yet challenging hole. Off the tee choose your straightest club in the bag and guide it down the elevated tee box to the landing area which is guarded by the Wolf Creek on the right and trees on the left. Once you get down to your tee-shot
(hopefully in the fairway) you will notice that you actually had more room on the left of the hole to place your tee-shot (classic Rod Whitman design).
Your next shot is arguably harder than the first, as the small undulating green is nestled right up against water left and long...Short here is ok. The forth is beautiful as it is tough and proves that a par 4 doesn't have to be 470 yards to make it challenging. If you walk off the green with a par you should happily grab your ball and trot off to the next tee.
The Links Course...
The Links Course is the newer of the two courses on the property (18 holes completed in 2010) and shows the evolution of Old World golf design to challenge today's player.
The Links Course includes many of the same old world features as the Old Course but on a much grander scale. The fairways are wider, the greens are larger and vast sand dunes appear throughout the 18 holes. At some point in your round you are sure to forget you are in central Alberta. The Links course is a great layout that contains everything you would need in a golf course. The variety of the holes on the Links course is exceptional and could be the reason why it is now the higher rated course on the property.
The par 3’s vary from a short (139 yards), mid-length (168 yards), a long (225 yards), and a monster (269 yards). The par 4’s are a fun mix of risk reward holes that play from 341 to 470 yards. And the three par-5’s on the Links Course are a great mix as well playing 625, 553
and 570 yards.
One of our favourite holes on the Links course is the dogleg right 16th (shown above). We love how this 410 yard hole flows down from the tee box to the fairway, and then back up the hill to the small challenging green complex protected by large deep bunkers. Local golfers often mention
that the 16th could be one of, if not the best par-4 in all of central Alberta!
The resort also features two driving ranges and a golf academy and a growing R.V. resort, making Wolf Creek a great place to set up shop for a central Alberta golf get-away.
•2 Rod Whitman championship designed courses
•The Old Course: Par 70, 6624 yards, Slope 135, Rating 72
•Links Course: Par 71, 7155 yards, Slope 125, Rating 73.6
•Performance Center, R.V. Resort located on property
•Located just off HWYII, 10 minutes South of Ponoka
•Rates: Dynamic pricing available online. $85 walking which includes range balls &walking cart