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Front Nine At The Lakes, A Photo Gallery

The front nine at The Lakes doesn't get the respect it deserves because of the grand scale of the back nine and generally sad perception that great golf must be on a large, sharply undulating scale.

The first plays with water on the left--certainly not ideal--before crossing under a road and traversing back and forth on beautiful terrain. The holes are separated by sandy areas which look old and full of character despite having been unveiled less than two years ago.

The greens are large and bold, with a plethora of great hole locations and only a couple that struck me as not being of great interest. The tee complexes sit in the ground beautifully and offer plenty of options, as well as a model for "proper" tees. Little splashes of sand and scrub make the blend in beautifully, but never get in the way of setting up the hole.

But mostly, the front has the appearance of being a fun, challenging nine with a solid variety of holes if you can look past some of the routing constraints. Hopefully these images help supplement the television coverage starting Wednesday night at 11 p.m. ET. (Click on the photos page to see captions.)

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Reader Comments (11)

Let's hope the Non HD channel nine broadcast does it justice.Go easy on the VB tonight Geoff.
11.8.2011 | Unregistered CommenterKeith86
I thought the NSW beer brands were like Tooheys and Hahn.

He can save the ubiquitous VB for when he is in Melbourne next week.

Aussie Sheilas start looking great around six pints - so aim for that as a minimum.
11.8.2011 | Unregistered CommenterMarky Mark
You in Australia taking pictures of the country with more of the world's best presented courses is the next best thing to going...I haven't been so in order to live vicariously stay a while and give us photos of all 9 gems once in Melbourne too please.
11.8.2011 | Unregistered CommenterBouje
Not to worry, more photos to come, WiFi and Internet restrictions willing!! I'll spare you the Coogie Beach photos from this morning, but what a place that is.
11.9.2011 | Registered CommenterGeoff
Well, well, you're staying in Coogee too. My own backyard. You have got a rough week ahead!

Well said about the tees. They are underrated and i love the way they can be mixed up to change the hole dramatically.
11.9.2011 | Unregistered CommenterMichael
That level of scruffiness and informality looks like a model for American courses--it's smart about what is groomed and what is left to nature. I don't even mind the road--concrete roads are as much a part of the modern landscape as manicured grass, so as long as they aren't physically disruptive, I don't mind having a road at some point next to the course.
11.9.2011 | Unregistered CommenterJim S
What a beautiful place. Actually the beach pictures would be fine, I'm sure. Tough work, but somebody's gotta do ti.
Ahhh Coogie, where men are men and women are usually scantily clad.....

11.9.2011 | Unregistered CommenterDick Mahoon
Geoff - The photos are great, but I can't see any captions - clicked on photos page as instructed. Are they labelled?
11.9.2011 | Unregistered Commentertitleist38
I too like the scruffiness of the layout. The thing I like about The Lakes vs. Royal Melbourne is that there is a strip of scruffiness to the bunkers. In the U.S., having closely mown turf right to the edge of the bunkers like RM would require hand-watering in just about every climate in the U.S. This is far closer to the model for the U.S.
11.9.2011 | Unregistered CommenterKS

What is your reaction to the on-course billboards? I wonder if they come across differently in person than they do on television and in your pictures?

Have fun!
11.9.2011 | Unregistered CommenterNick Adams

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