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Banff Springs Golf Course

Banff Springs

golf course tips from our resident pro

Banff Springs golf course

Try not to blink for fear of waking from the dream that is this stunning course. The Banff Springs is a formidable golf course nestled comfortably in a sea of pine trees in the very heart of the monumental Canadian Rocky Mountains. Complete with beautiful bodies of water, undulating greens and plenty more to delight the senses, playing this course is something like stepping into a painting.

Banff springs golf course

history of the course

In 1927 the Canadian Pacific Railway hired Canadian Stanley Thompson, who mentored the likes of the famous Robert Trent Jones, to compete with the magnificent course he had designed in the nearby Jasper Park. After much examining of the grounds Thompson decided that he wanted the course to go all the way up near the Banff Springs Hotel which was soon to be named the Castle in the Rockies. The fact that his employer was a railway made it much easier to transport the materials needed to make the design a reality. Upon completion of the course in 1929 the cost was estimated to be over a staggering $1,000,000. They were the most expensive 18 holes built at that time.

golf holes at banff springs golf course

get top tips before your round of golf

To those of you unfamiliar with Mr. Thompson’s works, he loved variety and beauty packed with tests for golfers of every level. He liked to have golfers use every club in the bag, with a well-balanced number of short and long holes distributed nicely to challenge both low and high handicap golfers. He also believed in a smooth ascending order of difficulty to give the golfer a chance to warm up. 

The first five holes are played right under the beautiful Mount Rudle, bringing you some truly enchanting and distracting views. Thankfully the holes themselves have a healthy dose of challenging without being overwhelming allowing you the chance to admire your surroundings. The 6th is a very well done transition hole with a wide fairway, but also the smallest green on the course. Beware the high shoulders on the green and plan your approach well. 

On the 8th hole you are first introduced to the thrashing waters of the Bow River which will continue roaring on your side for the next 7 holes. The right half of the green is dangerously protected by an elbow of water. That paired with the unruly wind leaves a very difficult decision in your hands, especially considering that this is the first time you play in that direction on this course. The 12th is a brilliant par 2 in which the hole is within eyesight from the tee zone. Temptation will be to hit it right in the direction of the flag and if you choose to do so you may set yourself for some trouble with the trees. 

The 17th hole is quite a crafty one. Large bunkers line the left side of the fairway encouraging a right side approach which is actually the opposite of what you should be doing as the angle to the green gets more brutal the farther right you go. From tee of the 18th you need to carry your ball long and to the right avoiding the out of bounds mark. This is where you will meet what is known as the ‘Hell’ bunker which is a whopping 15 feet deep. Avoid that, shoot with precision and you should be home free. 
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golf tips for banff springs

"Take this chance to play among one of Canada’s greatest treasures, the Rocky Mountains, in a fairy tale setting in the backyard of the Castle in the Rockies, on the course brought to life by a mastermind designer that inspired generations of golf course designers and architects alike. You won’t regret it. 

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