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Iron Horse Golf Course Review

Texas Outside Rating: 8.0

Golf - Public Course · 18 Holes · Par 72
N. Richland Hill
Website · Locate This Course
· Discounted Tee Times
Date Last Played: August 14, 2008

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Iron Horse Golf Course Review

Iron Horse, designed by Dick Phelps and named after the railroad that crosses the creek, is a fun and enjoyable round of golf. In 2007, Avid Golfer rated Iron Horse in it's top five "Value Priced Courses." The layout traverses through a solid hardwood forest across meandering creeks and under a railroad trestle. The course builds upon the railroad theme by deploying 3 authentic vintage railroad cars as restrooms, a snackbar and an office for the teaching staff. According to the Iron Horse website, "Iron Horse is considered a 'thinker’s course' by many because of its fantastic variety of holes and the requirement for draws, fades, "boomers" and lay-up shots off the tees and strategic plays into slick, undulating greens, that are well bunkered."

Iron Horse is a little short form all the tee boxes and only has 2 par fives and par is 70. However, the well protected greens and the dog legs require good club selection and course management. Each time we've played Iron Horse it has been in very good condition. The greens are large, fast, and gently rolling. The fairways were in above average condition.

Although there is nothing unusual or exceptionally memorable about Iron Horse, it is a good value, in above average condition, and a fun and enjoyable round of golf.

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Course Slope & Ratings

Tee Box Yardage Rating Slope
Gold 6,580 71.8 130
Blue 6,203 69.8 122
White 5,684 66.9 114
Red 5,083 69.6 119

Course Information

Course Architect:
Dick Phelps
Greens Type:
Champion Bermuda
Greens Condition
8.5
Greens Difficulty
7.5
GPS:
No
Walkable:
Very
Beware of water on 10 holes and the 36 sand traps.

Texas Outside Rating

Overall Rating:
8.0 out of 10
Beauty:
7.5
Difficulty:
7.0
Variety:
8.5
Fun to Play:
8.5
Value:
8.0
Condition:
8.0
Front Nine Rating:
8.0
Back Nine Rating:
8.0
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FEES & AMENITIES

Approximate Weekend
Rates:
$26.00 to $52.00

The club house is great, the pro shop is well stocked, and the food and bar are good. Iron Horse seems committed to providing you with a great round of golf.

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Here's How Texas Outside Determines the Scorecard Rating

The Texas Outside rating scale ranges from 1 to 10 – a perfect 10 course would be something like this:  links along a cliff overlooking the Pacific ocean and bordered by tall trees; lush fairways on rolling hills with lots of natural hazards; water (which is crystal clear) on most of the holes; immaculate greens (but they are undulating and tough); lots of variety and character (each hole is completely different and includes blind shots, elevation changes, doglegs, and significant challenges); perfectly manicured traps with the whitest and prettiest sand you’ve ever seen; a nice club house with great food and a 19th hole; a GPS; plenty of beverage carts or your own cooler and ice; and it only costs $40 bucks! What this means is that you probably won’t find any 10s in Texas – try Cabo San Lucas, Pebble Beach, or some of the Hawaii courses! 
Texas Outside rates courses on the following:

  • Beauty – tall trees, rolling hills, beautiful houses, waterfalls, and similar stuff would score high; a 1 would be flat, bushes or cactus instead of trees, and some grass but mostly weeds
  • Difficulty – a straight, 300 yard par 4 with no traps or hazards, no out of bounds or water would probably get a 1; if it is a 460 yard par 4 over two ravines, with water along one side, natural hazards on the other, strategically placed traps or that dreaded tree right in the middle of the fairway, we are talking a 10. 
  • Variety – what would you give a course where all the holes looked and played exactly the same (“I thought we just played that hole!”); were side-by-side, which is good for finding or dodging other people’s balls, but not much fun; and you can see the flag from every tee box?  That’s right, it gets a 1.
  • Fun Scale – a 10 is where you walk off the course and say “now that was fun” and you can’t wait to get back, or you immediately turn around and play another 18 holes
  • Value – a 5 is $50 to $60, a 10 is $20 to $30, and 1 is $200 or so – of course all of this is dependent upon how you liked the course.  For example, if a run down, boring municipal course, with six players on each hole was only $10; it would still get a value rating of 1.
  • Condition – this one’s pretty easy – what condition are the fairways. A 10 commands very lush perfectly manicured fairways, compared to a 1, which has fire ants, weeds, and more dirt than grass!
  • Condition of Greens and Difficulty – very hard to read greens with lots of undulation and tough pin placement, rate very high on the difficulty scale.  Condition is self-explanatory.  

All of the above determines the overall score for the golf course.  In other words, we like courses that are pretty, fun, very challenging with a lot of variety, and fairways and greens in excellent condition – all for $40.  We also tend to play the courses that are affordable for the masses, which means in the $30 to $80 range. We rate hard and we haven’t found a 10 in Texas yet – don’t worry we haven’t given up and we’re still looking.