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Among the prairies and wheat fields of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan in the western half of Canada lies unexpected pleasures for golfers. You might think that this northern clime would be too cold for good golf, and that is true for part of the year.
But when the warmer months come along, Saskatoon can be a welcome respite from the blazing heat of places farther south. Combine that with the abundant sunshine, Saskatoon gets more sunny days than almost any other city in Canada, and you get a great place for summertime golf.
Little wonder that Saskatoon is one of the fastest growing cities in Canada. Here are some great places to play in the Saskatoon area.
Dakota Dunes may just be the top public golf course in the entire province of Saskatchewan. Indeed, SCOREGolf magazine named it at the top of its rankings.
This is a world-class facility just a 15-minute drive south of Saskatoon. It has five tee boxes that give the course a range of anywhere from 5,100 to 7,300 yards. That variability helps make Dakota Dunes a proper challenge for golfers of all abilities.
Dakota Dunes gets its name from the natural sand dunes that form a significant portion of the property. Throughout the course are prairie grasses native to this part of the country. If you are thinking the flat landscape that this part of Canada is known for means a boring view, you will soon be disavowed of that notion.
The golf course sits near the South Saskatchewan River, which winds its way through the heart of Saskatoon. It is located on the Whitecap Dakota First Nation lands and the area continues to be developed. The course opened in 2004, with a new clubhouse opening in 2016.
It may seem odd to see links-style courses in a city roughly 1,000 miles from the ocean, the relatively flat landscape and plentiful water features makes that a popular design style in Saskatoon. Both Dakota Dunes and The Legends are links-style courses. Saskatoon is noted for its sandy dunes and lightly undulating grounds quite similar to Scotland, where links golf began.
The Legends is a fine choice that rivals any course the Saskatoon area has to offer. Just 10 minutes north of Saskatoon in Warman, The Legends has the thick fescue rough and rolling fairways you expect from links golf. It also has water coming into play on 10 of its 18 holes. This is a great challenge for any golfer. Like Dakota Dunes, there are five tees to choose from.
The Legends opened in 2011 and prides itself on offering a complete golf experience with superb service. To that end, the club offers not just the championship 18-hole course, but a pro shop, driving range, professional instructions, and excellent dining options.
The course at Saskatoon Golf and Country Club differs from the two courses listed above in its style. This one is a woodlands layout surrounded by trees. Of course, you will still find undulating grounds, especially on the greens.
Shot-making is crucial here, as well as positioning off the tee. This is no grip-it-and-rip-it course. Finding yourself above the hole on many of these greens can put you in a precarious position.
Saskatoon Golf and Country Club is known for a unique practice facility. Along with the practice tee and range you find at most courses, there is also a Practice Loop of three holes, a par 3, par 4, and par 5. You can play the loop as many times as you please.
This makes for a pleasurable experience for novice golfers and allows for players to practice under real conditions. This makes it one of the best practice facilities anywhere in Canada.
Originally opened in 1907, the course was redesigned in 2009.
Another Scottish-style links course, Moon Lake has three nine-hole courses with the highest slope ratings in Saskatchewan. This is a real test of golf, with dunes, rolling fairways, numerous water hazards, and long native grasses.
Moon Lake promises a memorable golf experience and it delivers. It also has a unique dining experience in the form of the Station Restaurant and Patio. The Station houses its restaurant, patio, and administrative offices in an old railway station that was moved to the area almost 40 years ago.
Renovated to provide a relaxing and enjoyable environment, the Station is a great place to relax after a fantastic day of links golf.
Many of the courses listed here are private clubs, but there are three city-run courses that are open to all golfers.
Holiday Park Golf Course
Holiday Park has a full 18-hole, par-71 course as well as a nine-hole executive course. The 18-hole course is tree lined and, as expected, is more challenging than the short course.
Holiday Park has everything you could want at any full-service club, with a driving range, practice green, pro shop, and beverage-cart service.
Silverwood Golf Course
Not often do you find full 18-hole par-3 golf courses, but that is exactly what you find at Silverwood. Located along the banks of the South Saskatchewan River, you can play this course in under two hours.
This is a great option for less-experienced golfers as well as those looking for a quick golf fix. Along the way, you might also improve your short game.
Wildwood Golf Course
A full 18-hole course, Wildwood is known for attractive intermediate level golfers. Many of the area’s younger players honed their golf skills at Wildwood.
Wildwood is known for its small greens, making precision a must if you want to post a low score.
All of the municipal courses have various specials aimed to give locals a less expensive option to play the great game of golf.
Saskatoon’s prairie landscape resembling Scotland affords locals and visitors alike a chance to enjoy golf in mild summertime temperatures, something lacking at many North American golfing locales.