Greywalls Open for Play


The Upper Peninsula of Michigan, long known for its natural wonders and outdoor tourist attractions, is the site of a new golf course as of June 16, 2005. The Greywalls course is part of Marquette Golf Club, which has been a traditional golf venue in that part of the U.P. since opening in 1926. Greywalls joins the original Heritage course and give the popular club 36 holes of fun and challenging golf.

"The Upper Peninsula has always been a great tourist attraction for its natural wonders. Greywalls has already been tagged a ‘natural wonder’ by the media because it embodies many of the same traits that this region possesses," explains Marc Gilmore, head golf professional at Greywalls. "Greywalls epitomizes our geographical region and will become something all Upper Peninsula residents will be proud of."

Greywalls was created by Mike DeVries, a golf architect based in Traverse City who has designed other Michigan layouts such as the Kingsley Club near Traverse City and Pilgrims Run near Grand Rapids. Greywalls’ design is already receiving accolades similar to those of the Kingsley Club, which has a strong national following.

Greywalls is one of the more unique layouts in the region. Spanning over 230 acres, the course combines views of Lake Superior with natural rock outcroppings. Working on the project was enjoyable for DeVries, who knows a great deal about routing golf courses. "The most important aspect of golf course design is the rhythm and flow of the routing," he said. "With Greywalls, my challenge was to find sequences of holes that flowed together so golfers could view Lake Superior and to bring out the indigenous rock outcroppings in a way that provided a strategy and challenge for all levels of golfers.

"The mark of a great golf course is also one that allows people to play it and learn something new from each round about the design. I believe we have achieved that with Greywalls," DeVries added.

Greywalls begins with a first tee that is at the highest point of the property. Golfers there will enjoy views that stretch nearly 50 miles and that involve the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, a popular tourism attraction.

A distinguishing feature of the course – and the source of its name – are the many rock outcroppings that enter play. These become more pronounced as the front nine progresses. The fifth hole features a green closely guarded on the right by a 60-foot high rock wall. The championship tee box on the par-3 sixth occupies a rock wall. The 188-yard tee shot must cross a wetland and a 20-foot rock wall to reach an elevated green in a canyon.

While the front nine offers some fine views and interesting rock formations, the back nine is arguably tougher. Lake views and more outcroppings enter play on the 10th, 16th, 17th and 18th holes, with the best stretch of pure golf found on Nos. 12-14. These holes feature sandy soil, rolling fairways, and strategic bunkering and green placement. These are also the longest stretch of holes on the course measuring 463, 559 and 449 yards, respectively.

The Upper Peninsula of Michigan has not been known as a major golf destination, unlike other communities in Northern Michigan that have focused on golf. Greywalls may change that. "Quality public golf is something this area has been unable to provide in the past," Gilmore said. "The quality and drama of Greywalls will not be lost with the golfing world."

For more information or a tee time, call 866/678-7171 or visit www.marquettegolfclub.com.


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