Lakewood G.C. in Kanagawa

Lakewood G.C.

Playing Impression (East Course)    (West Course)        Yardage
Hole 1 sets the tone for this fair and well manicured course with a relatively friendly par 4, bordered on the left with a glistening lake adjacent the tee and fairway bunkers on both sides of the landing area to penalize drives that miss this relatively generous first fairway.

In contrast the 432 yard 14th dog leg right plays long into the prevailing winds. A row of trees on the right extends into the fairway about 240yards out, making an approach tough from that side. Very seldom would anyone hit it far enough down the preferred left side to see the green, making this holes second shot essentially blind.

The course meanders through the forest with a good variety of picturesque, strategic yet fair holes climaxing at the end with the signature 18th. You are required to carry your tee shot over water onto the fairway perfectly laid out on a green peninsula with the lake continuing all the way down the left side. This beautiful 527 yard par 5 is a slight dog-leg left is an absolute pleasure to play presenting long hitters with an interesting risk-reward decision over the water on both their first and second shots! Wave Hi, to the folks in the club house as you make your approach onto this generous three tiered finishing green. Don't get distracted however, as the left side has little room for error with waterfalls and a pond waiting to penalize any errant shots.

Playing Impression (West Course)
Note: This course has a two green configuration so be weary of which side your flag is on, on each hole as yardage markers (left or right) represent the yardage of that sides green.

The west course is not as spectacular as the east course, but it represents a purer distillation of the attributes that make a good course great. The location is beautiful, occasionally breathtaking, with changes in elevation and vistas to the nearby mountain range. Multiple lakes at every turn help create a fun to play and tremendously user-friendly golf course. That's not to say it's easy, just that it requires more of an enlightened course strategy emphasizing finesse and course management skills rather than just raw power to produce a good score and is with out a doubt the more difficult of the two courses.

Two perfectly groomed large practice putting greens greet you directly as you exit the main doors from the club house towards the West courses 1st tee. Take in the tranquil sounds of the small waterfall that leads to the large pond and enjoy views of Mt Fuji towering in the distance directly ahead.

The starting 1st is lined with Japanese cherry trees from the tee, that blossom in spring making a mid April round on this course a favorite of the members and locals in the know. This down hill 557 yard par 5 starts you off with a generous fairway inviting you to unleash an un inhibited first tee shot. However, don't be fooled into letting your guard down, as a glance at the score card will tell you, this hole is handicapped #3 (3rd hardest on the course!)@

Your second will require you to advance the ball at least 180 to 200yards to allow a high approach shot into the green. Look to keep your 2nd shot to the side of the course that will allow you to avoid needing to carry the large and rather nasty bunker guarding the middle of these two greens.

The signature 4th is a spectacular par 3 with a 4 tiered waterfall between the A & B greens that flows into a rather ominous lake that borders the entire front middle section of both greens.

It's hard to not think about the water, just remember to use all of the tee ground well, and try to shoot away from trouble, while being ever conscious of the risk-reward ratio a shot straight at the flag might entail.

Though not overly threatening from the tee for the conservative player, the lake bordering the left side of the dog-leg number13 can cause you to forget your strategy and attempt the "hero shot" over it to gain some perceived advantage.

But rest assured, you won't be making the green, so it's a two shot process anyway you slice it, so to speak..! A safe shot down the right side is the money shot.

The 18th finishing hole is another water hole that highlights Robinson's mastery of the many lakes so prevalent in this natural landscape. With a lake down the left side (all the way to the green) and completely guarding your view to the green, this 381 yard par 4 will both please and test any golfers mettle.


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