Maples dynasty renovates Olde Mill


Maples dynasty renovates Olde Mill
Sean Dudley

The renovation of the Olde Mill golf course in Virgina is almost complete. Originally designed by the late Ellis Maples, the course is being reworked by his son Dan, and his son Bradley, the latest in the Maples dynasty of golf architects.

The project – part of a US$12 million upgrade of the Blue Ridge Mountains resort, includes irrigation improvements, layout changes to several holes and a new look for the course.

“The course which Ellis Maples conceived was based in large part on his respect and admiration for the work of Donald Ross,” says Hagen Giles, the club’s general manager. “Dan and Bradley did a great job helping us bring the course up-to-date without losing classical original design principles.”

The original Maples design stretched 6,833 yards, and championship tees have been pushed even further back for better golfers. For women and seniors golfers, the course has in fact been shortened to 4,875 yards.

Cart paths were repositioned and bridges rebuilt. All 70 bunkers have been renovated with sand from the sandhills of North Carolina. Fairway and greenside bunkers were reshaped, removed or added on twelve holes. The ninth has new tee boxes and a fairway raised by eight feet with. And the work on the fifteenth hole, perhaps the most dramatic in the renovation, will include removing trees and bunkers and the repositioning of the fairway.