The last golf course played on the recent HOG World Tour visit to Michigan was The Bear at Grand Traverse Resort in Grand Traverse, Michigan. It was figuratively and literally, a bear.
The Bear is a Jack Nicklaus design. This par-72 layout features six sets of tees which range from 5,281 yards to 7,078 yards. I said it is a bear and the slope and rating would confirm that. Slope is 150 and the rating 76.1 from the tips.
The primary reason this course kicked my butt is because of the forced carries, and the fact that I was struggling badly to hit decent iron shots. You can see in the photos here a shot that doesn’t carry is going to meet a watery grave.
I’ll be posting a full review of The Bear soon, but I need to lick my wounds first. Next time I’ll wear Bear spray. Stay tuned.
I had the great pleasure of playing The Heather course at Boyne Highlands in northern Michigan today. There wind there today would make Scotland proud, and it had its way with my game but I still loved the Robert Trent Jones Sr. layout.
The Heather Course features some of the most amazing, biggest green-side bunkers I’ve ever seen. Okay, they are the biggest I’ve ever seen.
Robert Trent Jones’s courses have such a great flow to them, including the Heather. The conditions were also very wet, with heavy rains the night before. The pond below was flowing onto the fairway.
I’ve got to head out to the next stop here in northern Michigan. Stay tuned for my full review of the Heather soon.
On my recent golf trip to Morocco I had the fabulous opportunity to stay at the 5-Star Mazagan Beach & Golf Resort in El Jadida, Morocco. Mazagan Beach & Golf is a very large resort with hotel, casino, spa, huge pool, beach on the Atlantic Ocean, and a Gary Player design golf course.
Location Location Location
What a tremendous location Mazagan Beach & Golf occupies. It’s basically and oceanside paradise lined with palm trees. The huge grounds are immaculately maintained and full of fantastic designs and creative landscapes.
The resort’s architecture reflects traditional Moroccan traditions but still has a modern and clean look and feel.
Below notice the open door? That’s my room.
My room, lower right
Below is the view from inside the room, looking out to the pool area.
Turning around from the view out to the pool, this is the room.
Food and Beverage
My group enjoyed some traditional Moroccan food in the MORJANA Restaurant. The Lebanese/Moroccan food and Moroccan wine was fantastic.
Lamb, chicken, beef kebobs
Triangles with filo dough on the outside. Inside is either meat or cheese
The restaurant featured a musician playing a stringed instrument I’m not familiar with. Looked like a bouzouki but it wasn’t. Then after that we were treated to a belly dancer who was fantastic.
John (GolfBlogger.com) enjoys the show
John (above) enjoyed watching the belly dancer, but yours truly was the one she picked to dance. Never before have such awful dance moves (mine, not the belly dancer’s) been on display in the content of Africa. I guarantee it.
I had NO idea how many knots I had in my back. It was a great thing that I was able to get a massage while at Mazagan. The masseuse was incredible. She found, and resolved knots in places I didn’t know existed. It really helped out my endurance and flexibility for the rest of the golf trip.
While working out some knots the masseuse, who spoke nearly zero english asked, “you work on computer?” She could tell. I responded, “world famous golf blogger. If I’m not on the golf course I’m at the computer penning Blogitzer Prize winning golf blog posts.” Actually, I just said yes.
I did not test my luck at the casino, though I did take a quick look in. Very nice. My bank account thanked me for my self-control.
I’ll be posting a review of the Gary Player designed Mazagan Golf Club soon. The course runs along Mazagan beach. Huge breakers crash in on the shore. Huge. Now I know why some friends of mine take the trip to Morocco to surf.
The course is very fun to play, and not so difficult that it demoralizes you.
Think outside of North America.
Casablanca, Morocco is a 6.5 hour flight from JFK Airport in New York. From there it’s not a long drive to Mazagan. Rather than traveling in the USA or to Mexico for your next golf trip, you could be in fabulous Morocco enjoying a 5-Star resort, great food, beach, surfing, gaming, lodging, and golf at Mazagan.
Greetings from Rabat, Morocco. The HOG World Tour is here discovering what a great place to visit Morocco is, and to show the world that there is some great golf to be played here. For those who aren’t quite sure where Morocco is (I wasn’t sure either), the country is located in the north west corner of the African continent.
One highlight from today was my first visit ever to a mosque.
It has been an extremely long 2.5 days. I’ve had two red-eye flights and a 13 hour layover in NYC. I’m super tired. Today was a settle in day, and touring day for the city of Rabat. Tomorrow is the first round of golf. This is a quick check-in. I will be posting much more here and on Twitter and Facebook about this Morocco trip, so tune in.