The Fort Golf Course – Indianapolis, IN

This picture will go down as the last picture ever taken from my PowerShot.

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In the middle of the sixth hole, I was trying to take a picture of a deer that was running through the fairway. In doing so, with my lense fully extended, I dropped the camera on the cart path. Now, I have had this happen before, but that camera survived. Unfortunately, I can’t say that this camera did. So, I apologize for the less than my standard quality of photos for holes 7-18, but it was the best my HTC Trophy could do.

The Fort Golf Course was designed by Pete Dye and Tim Liddy and is part of a 1,700 acre park. This means, not a house in sight! Those that have read my posts on Sultan’s Run and Trophy Club know that I’m a huge Tim Liddy fan. This course too does not disappoint.

Holes

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The course starts out with a fairly straight-forward, 381 yard hole. The fairway is plenty wide, though slopes right to left. Two bunkers on either side protect the driving area. The elevated green is open on the right, but well protect front-left. Great opportunity to start out with a birdie.

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Another great opportunity comes at the 323 yard par 4 2nd. The green is actually close than the yardage due to the sharp dogleg left at about 100 yards out. Bombers can drive the green, but must contend with three bunkers in front, and a drop-off in the back.

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The first real test comes at the long par 4 4th. Although it is 479 yards from the tips, it does play downhill. There are some flat areas, but the ideal tee shot will favor the right side and play the slope. The approach may be tricky due to the lie, but the green is open in front, with a bunker left.

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I’d like to refer my readers to the pin placement as shown at the 170 yard par 3 5th. The super must have been in a bad mood that day.

The par 5s on the front 9 come back-to-back. Something you don’t see too often, though certainly not unheard of. The 511 6th is certainly reachable in two. A line of bunkers protects the layup area. The left side is easier to access, but the right side provides a straight-on shot that doesn’t require you to carry a bunker. The 7th is a bit longer and has some trouble on the right side of the layup and green.

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After what could be 3 straight birdie opportunities (another one at the 345 yard par 4 8th), comes the 482 beast-of-a-par 4 9th. The fairway is plenty wide, though condenses in the driving zone. As with most holes on the course, you can play a low, running shot to the green and expect to be on in regulation.

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After another birdie hole at 10 comes one of the more interesting holes on the course. The fairway seems to double dogleg at the 547 11th. I felt that his hole used the land perfectly, into a good three-shot par 5. Things narrow in the layup zone, but widen up by the green.

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I just love how this course alternates between birdie opportunities and when to hang on for par. The 16th is probably the last realistic chance at birdie. Although it’s 582 yards, the fairway is very wide and the only real trouble is up by the green. After that, hang on, because you deal with a 247 yard par 3 and a 474 yard par 4.

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The 474 yard finisher is one of few doglegs on the course. The safe option is right, but longer hitters can choose to carry the bunkers on the left. The green is protected by a large, narrow bunker on the right. As with other greens, undulations are subtle, but existent.

Conclusion
The Fort is a great golf course. Despite its elevations, the course is manageable for the high capper, but can be a good test for the scratch golfer. Conditioning was excellent, except I wasn’t sure what was going on with hole 15. It should have had two long bunkers, but they were both not being maintained. I’m not sure if this is part of early season maintenance, or if they are simply growing these bunkers out.

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The Fort has a good driving range, a putting green, and a chipping/bunker green. I do not think it’s realistic to walk this course. The distance between green and tees is fine; there are just some valleys you have climb up and down that are fairly severe. Probably the hilliest area of Indianapolis is this golf course.

Despite the bunker condition on 15, I’m still giving this course an OINK 9. Easily among the best of the best when it comes to Indianapolis public golf.

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Posted in Indiana

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