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    Cutters Ridge

A chance for yet another very out-of-the-ordinary round of 18.

A thinking golfer’s favorite among the marshes of Manistee, Michigan. One of the great things about our Cutters’ Ridge Course is how its personality differs from that of Canthooke Valley, giving you, the golfer, a chance for yet another very out-of-the-ordinary round of 18. The variety will amaze you. While Canthooke lies on sandy soil, Cutters’ Ridge has a more clay-like soil. The fairways as well as the greens at Cutters’ Ridge are paved with bentgrass. While Cutters’ Ridge also has stunning trees, its major distinctions are the marsh and wetlands on this site. Michigan’s outstanding golf architect Jerry Matthews, known for his designs at the Grand Hotel at Mackinac Island, Hunter’s Ridge in Howell and TimberStone in Iron Mountain, laid out this course in 1999. It opened in 2000. At Cutters’ Ridge, Matthews succeeded in blending the beauty of the site into one of the state’s most outstanding courses. This is also a course that accomplished golfers from throughout the state long to play because it has one of the highest slopes in Michigan. Shorter hitters can relax, however, as there are five sets of tee boxes here, with one set sure to match their skills.

For tee time reservations, call 231-398-0123

“It’s a very modern design with large, wide fairways and more bunkers than are on Canthooke,” said Doug Bell, “The greens and tee boxes are slightly larger, and usually there is more elevation change from hole to hole.” Matthews is known for his elevated greens, in particular some where you have to hit up from the fairway without seeing the bottom of the flagstick. “That’s not true here,” said Bell. “We have elevated greens, but you can see where you’re going.” Perhaps the most challenging aspect of Cutters’ Ridge is that the wetlands here offer you more chances to test your skill at carrying the ball over water. You’ll really get to know the look and feel of Cutters’ Ridge when you come to the third hole on this course, a slight dogleg left par-4 (408 yards from the back and 282 from the front). You’ll find a mix of different kinds of pines along the fairway here because once upon a time this area was a Christmas tree farm. But the most notable landmark here is the large cherry tree standing at the crook of the dogleg. A little creek also runs through your landing area. Long hitters should play a 3-wood off the tee for safety, according to Bell. At the turn, you’ll be playing across a creek to the elevated green protected by a sand bunker on the front right and a grass bunker front left. No. 4 is a par-5 that plays at 518 yards from the back and 391 from the front. “This is a double dogleg left,” said Bell. “It takes one left turn and then another one, about 90 yards from the green. You need a well-placed long tee shot here to the right edge of the fairway.” But he adds that this is “a true three-shot par-5.” No cutting the corners here to trim yards off your distance. Book your tee time at Cutters’ Ridge today! Click here or call 231.723.8874 ext. 3 or 800.867.2604. No. 8 is a par-3 (162 yards from the tips and 119 from the front) that gives you a chance to test yourself against the marshlands of the course. You have to carry the marsh to get to the green, but the distance isn’t great. “But it is an elevated green and it sits up about 15 to 20 feet in the air and it has three tiers,” Bell said. “If the pin is in the middle, you have to be pin high or your ball will roll off the front. There’s also the danger of bouncing your ball off the back of the green into the marsh. It’s a very difficult green complex.” You’ll finish the front with a par-4 (415 yards from the back and 260 from the front) that will remind you a lot of No. 18 on Canthooke. This hole at Cutters’ Ridge has marsh on the left side of a fairway that makes a sweeping dogleg left. The green is elevated. “A good tee shot to the right will be safe, but if you go left, your ball could land in the marsh. It’s also slightly uphill all the way to the green and the hole has a stadium feeling to it with a lot of mounding on the right,” Bell said. On the back tees, you’ll encounter a three-hole swing 11, 12 and 13, that is almost picture perfect and also demands your strategic thinking. One of the most scenic holes on the course is No. 11, a par-4 that measures 417 yards from the back and 270 from the front. In fact, we use photographs of this hole on some of our brochures. Prepare to be intimidated when you get into the tee box for the first time. From the tips, you will need a carry of 180 yards over marshland; from the women’s tees, it’s only 50. There’s also an elevated green. “But the fairway is generous,” Bell said, “and the hole looks longer than it really is. You are also generally hitting downwind.” Recently, we remodeled No. 12 at Cutters’ Ridge, making it a par-3 instead of a par-4, in order to improve the variety of the layout. Although the hole is now 60 yards shorter than before, it remains an exciting test. It now measures 209 yards from the back tees and 115 from the front. “Visually, this has become a very stunning hole,” Bell said. “The tee boxes are elevated and cut into a hillside. From the back tees you have to hit a long lofted shot over a pond to a small but fair green. There is no forced carry from the front tees.” No. 13, a par-4 that measures 369 yards from the back and 259 from the front tees, requires a carry over wetlands to the fairway and then another carry from the fairway to the green. It’s also a slight dogleg right. “Better players should use a three-wood to 3-iron off the tee,” said Bell. “Stay to the left, and you’ll be safe. The key from the tee box is hitting to the 150-yard post and the fat part of the fairway. The green is fair but has three little tiers. It’s very hard to get to the back corner when the pin is there because the green is so skinny in back.” No. 17 is a marsh hole, too, but has a very different feel to it. You make your drive on this par-4 that measures 411 yards from the back and 263 from the front from a very elevated tee box down to a fairway that goes to the right and then to the left around another marsh. “Use a 3-wood off the tee,” said Bell. “Because if you go through the fairway, you end up in the marsh. This is not a long hole, but the tee shot can be very intimidating.” No. 18, is a par-4 (402 yards from the back and 271 from the front) that requires a tee shot over a lake to a fairly small landing area. Par is a great score for your final hole. Distance, ratings and slopes at Cutters’ Ridge:

  • Black 6,654 (73.9/149)
  • Blue 6,321 (72.0/144)
  • White 5 ,819 (69.1/130)
  • Gold 5,301 (67.6/128)
  • Red 4,571 (68.8/125)

Ready for another out-of-the-ordinary 18, that will make you think a little harder when selecting a shot!, call 231-398-0123, and book your tee time at Cutters’ Ridge today.

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