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Tradition is in good shape. Greens were rolling good, above average speed and no issues. They are not quick, mind you. Fairways, tees and bunkers were all fine. Off of those and it’s just okay, which is what Tradition is, in my opinion. It’s a good course and worth playing when it is in good shape like it’s in now. However, it will never be one of my favorites. You have almost no chance to find a ball that veers off course. So much thick brush and trees and little creeks on every hole. It’s easy to lose balls if you are not keeping the ball near the fairway (can you tell I had a rough day off the tee?). So I wouldn’t recommend this course for a beginner or high handicapper. Not because the course is that difficult – it’s got several great scoring opportunities for better players – just because it isn’t that fun to play when you are losing a ball and having no option to play another shot on so many holes. I’m sure if I played here more I would get used to it and know which holes to be conservative off the tee. Let’s just say this course isn’t very forgiving. And the $46 price for a weekday morning is no bargain. That said, the round played swiftly as far as pace and the experience itself was good. Tradition is using upside hole cups and they didn’t affect play.
This is part of my oft-mentioned pet peeve about penalty markers. Since Tradition is so punishing just off the fairway, as is Larkin and many others, they could easily mark at least the worse areas as penalty areas, allowing for drop and one stroke vs. heading back to the tee or dropping and taking two. They also have the option now of invoking new rule E-5 which allows a drop in the fairway, with two strokes, even to where a ball goes out of bounds or is deemed to be lost. They have options, but either don’t know it or choose not to use these to speed up the game and/or take a bit of the sting out.
I agree! I had to use that drop in the fairway rule 3 times because of lost balls! I don’t think I’ve used it more than twice before today.