Colonial Country Club

Colonial Country Club – Played November 2017

  • Rankings: Golf Magazine #86
  • Location: 3735 Country Club Circle, Fort Worth, Texas
  • Year: 1935
  • Architects: John Bredemus & Perry Maxwell
  • Course Access: Private
  • Walking Rules: Carts & Caddies Available

Score Card Information:

  • Black: 7,204 yards, Par 70, 75.1 Rating/138 Slope
  • Blue: 6,837 yards, Par 70, 73.5 Rating/134 Slope
  • Gold: 6,527 yards, Par 70, 72.0 Rating/131 Slope
  • White: 5,971 yards, Par 70, 68.8 Rating/124 Slope (Men’s), 76.2 Rating/139 Slope (Women’s)
  • Red: 5,700 yards, Par 72, 74.8 Rating/137 Slope

I love it when a plan comes together!  I’ll explain a little bit more of what I mean.

Back in July I was in Orange County, California for my brother-in-law’s wedding.  This is the one I mentioned in the Pelican Hill post.  Our table set up for the reception included one of his work buddies who lived in Dallas named Robert.

Robert and I talked a bit about my quest and we all had a fun night at the reception.  Fast forward a few months later and I reached out to Robert about playing at Colonial and if he had any connections.

Luckily, a good friend of his is a member.  Plans were made and the wife and I made travel plans.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a connect for Dallas National this time, but it’s a good reason to go back.

With all this planning, I had time to invite my buddy Lance who lives in Oklahoma.  The drive was much easier for him than it was for me from South Carolina, but I love to drive.  Lance is a good dude so I was happy to help him out with this one.  Other than his OU fandom we get along great :).  Sorry buddy!

A brief history of Colonial starts with its founding in 1936 by J Marvin Leonard of Leonard Bros. Department Stores.  With over 1,500 members it can be a bustling place.  The website recommends checking out the book Colonial Country Club: The Diamond Jubilee Celebration by Fran Trimble for an expanded history.

The playing history of Colonial is quite extensive as well.  It has hosted a PGA Tour stop from 1946 to the present.  Ben Hogan is a five time champ 1946, 1947, 1952, 1953, and 1959.  While it is undergoing some sponsorship trouble right now, I hope it can remain in the rotation as it is a wonderful stop.

Additional tournaments contested there include the 1941 US Open, 1975 Tournament Players Championship, 1991 US Women’s Open.  Ben Hogan is a five time champ 1946, 1947, 1952, 1953, and 1959.

I have a few photos from the grounds before we get into the tour.  The place is dripping with Hogan history.  His office sits directly next to the pro shop and is seen in the picture below.

There is also a small Hogan museum in the clubhouse that has some really cool artifacts.  I don’t have any pictures, but I highly recommend checking it out.

The logo is stitched into some of the most comfortable golf cart seats I’ve ever sat in.

The expansive range is below.  You can’t tell, but the wind is blowing about 25 in this picture.

We were very lucky to play on a Saturday morning.  We were getting to tee it up in what the member’s call the Saturday Big Game.  Some large names have played in this tradition including Nicklaus.

We were also fortunate to play the with head pro, Dow Finsterwald Jr.  He’s one of the fastest players I have ever seen.  That is not hyperbole.

Alright, that was long-winded for me!   Let’s get to the golf.  We played the gold tees.

Hole 1 – 546 yards – Par 5

The first tee shot is pretty open, but in front of 10 members it can be daunting.  Keep up the left side as trees block the right side of the hole.

As you maneuver around the corner you can see that the trees continue.  Leaving yourself on the right side of the fairway for the third shot gives the best angle.

Here is a look at the approach shot view.

A closer look at the green reveals some of the slope.  Overall it is back to front, but with some drop off in the back.

Hole 2 – 359 yards – Par 4

I mentioned briefly before that it was quite a windy day.  This is a great example because I hit a decent drive that got up in the breeze and went absolutely nowhere.  On normal days you can carry the trees on the right.

The green is elevated and really requires an aerial approach.  The bunkers are quite deep and no guarantee of an up and down.

Hole 3 – 450 yards – Par 4

I only captured the tee shot here so I’ll focus on that.  The hole doglegs to the left.  Depending on how solid you hit your drive you can carry the bunkers on the left.  Beware though as they are pretty deep.

Hole 4 – 201 yards – Par 3

This hole played straight into the wind.  I hit driver and was still 10 yards short!  The raised green and deep bunkers make it plenty challenging.

Hole 5 – 440 yards – Par 4

This slight dogleg right hides a dry creek bed up the left side.  This hole is also flanking the driving range making the landing area somewhat tight.  If you have a fade in your arsenal now is the time to use it.

The view from the left side shows that you can be blocked out by trees a bit.  You still have options on this side compared to missing right in a hazard.

Hole 6 – 381 yards – Par 4

The tee shot is pretty benign here.  Avoid the bunker on the right side and a short iron should await you.

A good angle to this green signals a birdie opportunity.  Be careful not to miss on either side, however, as the bunkers are par killers.

Hole 7 – 395 yards – Par 4

Just a straight hole from tee to green.  Avoid the left as dense trees await.

A deep front bunker guards the green here.  Shots missing to the left will get into the trees quickly.  The center of the green is a worthy accomplishment here.

Hole 8 – 169 yards – Par 3

Tucked among the trees this hole is still susceptible to the wind.  Greenside bunkers are obviously a huge factor at Colonial and this hole is no exception.  The slope in front of the green will send short shots back towards the tee.

Hole 9 – 370 yards – Par 4

Pretty easy off of this tee as you can take less than driver.  Keep it up the left side to avoid some tree trouble.

Our first encounter with a hazard makes the approach shot somewhat nervy.  The green is big though and you will want to make sure to be on the proper tier.  Shots to the right have a longer distance to clear the water.

Hole 10 – 381 yards – Par 4

The fairway sits at an angle to this tee.  Depending on your length you have options on this tee.  A dry creek bed sits in the area where my drive landed.  It was playable, but worth noting.  A draw is the preferred shot shape here.

You can see the creek bed below is bone dry.  The green is open in the front, but drops off behind the flag.

Hole 11 – 586 yards – Par 5

This is a long damn hole and that is all there is to say.  Bust a drive as long as you can and you’ll probably still be pulling out three wood for your second shot.

The open green will only punish shots off line with bunkers.

There is some interesting internal contours on the green seen below.  Putts can definitely be made here though.

Hole 12 – 400 yards – Par 4

Fly your drive straightaway on this one, the longer the better.

The approach plays to a raised green.  Avoid short-siding yourself in one of the bunkers.

Hole 13 – 145 yards – Par 3

Be mindful of the wind on this hole as it is all carry.  Like number 9, if you flare one right it will have farther to carry.  The green has serious slope from back to front.  Our host mentioned you can putt it in the water here!

Hole 14 – 405 yards – Par 4

This hole opens up a bit, but you can run out of room on the right side.  A power tee shot up the left center of the fairway will leave you in a good spot.

I told you Dow Jr was fast.  Look at him up there on the green!  This is one of the easier looking approaches as the green/target is framed by sand allowing you to hone in on the flag.

Hole 15 – 380 yards – Par 4

A slight dogleg to the right here doesn’t require a bombed drive.  Avoid the left fairway bunker and a shorter club should get you home.

The green is elevated and will repel shots that come up a bit short.  Long and left is not good here as a hazard sits in that spot.

The green is seen below.

Hole 16 – 174 yards – Par 3

The water hazard draws your eye, but only really poor shots will find it.  The green sits at an angle to the tee and favors a fade.

The large slope on the right side will affect putts on that part of the green.  Overall the slope is back to front.  You can also see the grade of the ground from left to right.

Hole 17 – 355 yards – Par 4

The penultimate hole favors a fade off the tee.  With less than driver the bunker is a good aiming point.

Trees continue up the right side and will block out drives that veer too far right.  An elevated green is guarded by deep bunkers.

Hole 18 – 390 yards – Par 4

The final hole has some history from all the PGA events here.  I will always remember Phil getting on the green from the left trees some years ago.  A draw is preferable from the tee.

The water hazard lurks to the left so avoid that side.  The bunker on the left is deeper than most on the rest of the course.

The green is a pretty small target and it slopes from right to left.  Shots from these closer bunkers will be nerve wracking with water beyond.

We had a great fivesome on this day and had a blast.  The famous Texas wind was whipping and provided plenty of challenge.  We were playing so fast that I didn’t get a chance to photograph many of the greens, so sorry about that.

After our round we hung out in the clubhouse and had some drinks with the members that had played in the Big Game.  They were all very welcoming.  The vibe in the bar was very chill.  I could see myself spending plenty of time there as a member.

Colonial is a members club that doesn’t seem to take itself too seriously.  I loved the atmosphere.

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