A course that has few rivals with it’s unparalleled views of Table Mountain and its status a links golf test that has a rich history in the Cape.
Closed during the First World War, the original six-hole design has come a long, long way. With the Atlantic Ocean to the left, as you look out from the clubhouse, and the Rietvlei lagoon to the right, there was no option but to construct a “9 out, 9 in” golf course.
Those who have ventured out in the “breeze” will know what a difference this make with very few holes played across the wind. Instead, the outward nine has the wind to support you and the inward run plays directly into the prevailing South Easter, It all adds up to one of the most interesting golf experiences.
It was only in 1995 that a major renovation was done with some of the original design left in tact. What was left is a wonderful links test that mixes dolphin spotting and gazing at Table Mountain into the bouquet on offer.
The course opens with four par fours which will please the long hitters with little protection beyond the beach to the left. In fact, two of the opening five tee boxes would be in jeoapardy of being washed away in high tide but are saved thanks to their elevated perch. The rolling nature of the links design mean that most low handicappers will find themselves trying to pitch and putt for birdie with the sixth very much reachable if you can fade the ball in from the sand dunes on the left of the green.
The eighth hole is a serious par 5 that has a wetland to avoid left off the tee and the Rietvlei River to miss off the tee and again short left off the green. The ninth is far and away the toughest hole at this point, a 400 metre par four, as you play up to a green that has water short left and trouble down the right.
The back nine offers plenty of scoring chances provided you have brought your A game to the course as water and wind threaten a good day out. Your return to the clubhouse is played almost entirely with views of Table Mountain and into the prevailing wind. The 10th is a par 5 that often looks far easier than it plays while the 12th is a great test of strokeplay. A long par 4 at 380m, there is no room to bail out with bush down the right and out of bounds into the houses on the left.
The closing stretch can be near impossible when the wind picks up. In theory, there is a short par four, a two-shot par 5 and a long par 4 but in reality, the Rietvlei River down the left and three to four club wind makes par down this stretch of holes a mighty achievement.
While most Cape courses can offer beauty in spades, Milnerton’s 19th hole deck has the Atlantic Ocean and Table Mountain on display as you quickly forget golf and admire its unparalleled majesty.
Check the weather in advance, the prevailing South-Easter makes the fairly easy course into one of the hardest challenges out there.
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