Bobby Weed Golf Design has completed a three-year renovation project on the Championship course at Grandfather Golf & Country Club in Linville, North Carolina.
Located in a valley between two mountain ridges, the club has two golf courses originally designed by Ellis Maples. The Championship course was laid out in 1968 and the Mountain Springs layout in 1977.
“My past conversations with golf course architect Ed Seay – who mentored under Ellis Maples and served as the on-site project manager – assisted our firm in understanding Maples’ true design objectives,” said Weed, who has provided consulting services and developed master plans for both courses over the years. “Seay also revealed how challenging the golf course construction was in difficult mountain conditions. From those discussions, we have upheld their design philosophies, while improving upon the golf course’s infrastructure, maintenance and aesthetics.”
Construction work, which took place during each autumn and spring from 2019 to 2022, involved rebuilding fairway bunkers on holes eight, ten, eleven and eighteen for improved maintainability and visual contrast.
Tees on the eleventh hole were shifted to the left for a new playing angle and sightlines for drives. A new tee complex was built on the sixteenth to add length and reduce the severity of the dogleg down to a treacherous creek bed.
Work to improve drainage and playability has seen diversion swales reinstalled on the high sides of many holes to better contain surface runoff. Herringbone drainage systems were also installed in every fairway to promote firm playing conditions. Both the diversion swales and drainage systems now convey water into a new primary storm drain that features new high-density polyethylene (HDPE) pipes.
“Ongoing golf course infrastructure improvements are imperative to maintaining our high standards,” said John Cunningham, general manager of Grandfather Golf & Country Club. “We are appreciative of Bobby Weed Golf Design for their long-term relationship and commitment to our club.”