Bradley Klein and Martin Kaufmann with early impressions of Sand Valley, the Mike Keiser-led midwest development featuring a Coore-Crenshaw design, with more on the way.
Sand Valley’s grass-covered dunes, some of them 50-60 feet high, are the product of massive outwash from glaciation and an abrupt flood 15,000 years ago. Coore and Crenshaw’s routing meanders through broad valleys, climbs atop those dunes and at times circulates through flatter ground that had been planted for decades in the dead straight rows of a pine tree farm.
The scale of the place can be disorienting, given the wide berth of playing options available. The par-72 layout tips out at 6,909 yards (72.6 rating/128 slope). But those black-tee numbers are virtually meaningless in the midst of the prevailing wind and the intensity of ground-game roll. The vast bulk of rounds will be played from more comfortable yardages of 6,514 yards (orange), 6,087 (sand), 5,574 (green) and 4,586 (blue). Get it – no gender-biased red colors here. Just play it from where you think you can have fun.