Forest Creek Golf Club Review

Texas Outside Rating: 9.0

Golf - Public Course · 18 Holes · Par 72
Round Rock
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Forest Creek Golf Club Review

Review of Forest Creek Golf Club in Round Rock

Designed by Dick Phelps and opened in 1984, Forest Creek is a somewhat traditional tree lined course with rolling fairways, pristine greens, an abundance of native foliage, some very fun holes that require some strategic play, good conditions and challenging greens, and reasonable rates for such a quality course. It's not surprising that Forest Creek was named as "Best Public Golf Course in Central Texas" by Golf Digest and it also made Texas Outside's list of the Best Austin Area Golf Courses!

The City of Round Rock took over ownership of Forest Creek Golf Club in 2018 and invested over $5 million in improvements and renovations, some of which included:

  • new golf carts with a great GPS (Bluetooth, touch screen, pace of play, and more)
  • rebuilding of the greens, putting green, and chipping green
  • renovation of the driving range to include new tee area, regrading of the range, target greens, bunkers, and LED lighting for night time practice
  • improved drainage in low lying areas and installation of a new irrigation system
  • reconstruction of all bunkers unisng the Better Billy Bunker method

The City also hired Kemper Sports (one of the best golf course management companies) to manage the course and staff. 

We loved the front nine because each hole is a little different from the previous holes, the fairways are lined by trees on one side and beautiful homes on the other side, the terrain is rolling and contoured, and you need to deploy some good course management and strategic shot-making to turn in a good round.  Plus Forest Creek's front nine is home to some really fun holes like:

  • #3 is a 552-yard par 5 with a slight downhill tee shot leading to  a green guarded by a left side bunker, 2 right side bunkers and water off the back side - there are also 5 bunkers in the fairway you need to avoid
  • #7 is a blast - a 537-yard par 5 dog leg left where off the tee it's easy to overshoot the fairway and end up in the trees; a second shot that needs to carry a creek and avoid a huge sprawling oak in the middle of the fairway that covers most of both sides of the fairway; and an approach to a green off to the right guarded by 4 good sized bunkers
  • #9 is a challenging 405-yard par 4 that takes a sharp dog leg left - your drive needs to be perfect to not overrun the fairway and to give you a good angle at the approach shot which needs to miss  two ponds that pinch the fairway that leads up a big hill to the green - and halfway up the hill trees on both sides narrow your approach shot and the steep fairway slope can take your ball back down into or near the water

Most of the holes on the front require accuracy off the tee as well as some strategic shot making to avoid hazards and position your ball for the next shot.  The driver will most likely enjoy a stay in your bag!  You'll also encounter some excellent risk-reward opportunities.

The back nine seems easier and a more forgiving - on the first three holes the fairways are huge and you can pull out the big dog and let-er-rip.  But this nine is no walk in the park: you'll find dog legs, creeks to cross, an intimidating 200-yard par 3 with a carry over the lake to a big green with 3 bunkers, some demanding green complexes, plenty of bunkers, and a really fun 16th hole.  Our two favorite holes on this nine include:

  • #15 is a long 474-yard par 4 with a slight downhill tee shot, two bunkers at the end of the fairway where it takes a sharp dog leg right, and a pond on the right front of the green waiting for your approach shot
  • #16 is a fun 539-yard par 5 that takes a right turn in front of two big bunkers (a good risk-reward shot to fly the trees to shorten the hole) - trees on the left and right side of the fairway make for a challenging approach shot to the oblong green with a ridge across the middle

The fairways at Forest Creek Golf Club are lined with trees on one side and some big beautiful homes that can come into play on the other side. The fairways are rolling with some uphill and downhill shots (including a couple blind shots) and they are heavily contoured with some mounding and plenty of strategically placed bunkers. When we played the fairways were in good condition and firm providing some good extra roll. 

The greens at Forest Creek are huge and a wide variety of shapes.  All have some degree of slope ranging from gentle to severe, several have spines or ridges or tiers and mounds, and all but two are guarded by one to three bunkers.  When we played the greens were running very fast and pin placement made putting very challenging - three putts were fairly common.  The good news was we found it fairly easy to get on the green in regulation. 

The bunkers range from some steep and deep pot bunkers to some large nasty monsters!  The sand was perfect and a joy to hit from.  They were well manicured.

The rough was very dense and thick and ball eating when we played - they were letting to grow in preparation for an upcoming tournament.  Normally, the rough is playable.

Bottom line - very good conditions, a great rate, and a fantastic 18 holes that requires some good putting and excellent course management skill to score well.  The second time you play the course, you'll find it a little easier.

Head Pro's Corner

From Jeff Dayton, PGA General Manager

Forest Creek offers a diverse golf experience, depending on what tees you play from. The course favors a straight hitter, but then again, what course doesn’t? Our new tif-eagle greens are rolling fantastic and our new golf carts with GPS offer a hill country golf experience like no other. Come see for yourself if you haven’t played Forest Creek in a couple years…you will be glad you did.

If you are looking at improving your game, we have 4 instructors on staff to help you do just that. For golf course programs and upcoming events, visit us at www.forestcreek.com. Also, like our Facebook page and follow us on Instagram.

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Course Slope & Ratings

Tee Box Yardage Rating Slope
Blue 6,498 71.2 128
White 6,026 68.8 122
Gold 7,147 73.8 136
Red 5,394 71.9 124

Course Information

Course Architect:
Dick Phelps
Greens Type:
TIF Bermuda
Greens Condition
9.0
Greens Difficulty
8.8
Fairway Condition
9.0
Bunker Condition
9.0
GPS:
Yes
Walkable:
Yes
Scorecard
Beware of water on 11 holes and the 38 sand traps.

Texas Outside Rating

Overall Rating:
9.0 out of 10
Beauty:
8.7
Difficulty:
8.9
Variety:
9.0
Fun to Play:
9.5
Value:
9.0
Condition:
9.0
Front Nine Rating:
9.2
Back Nine Rating:
9.1
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FEES & AMENITIES

Approximate Weekend
Rates:
$25.00 to $69.00

Service is excellent - very friendy from the pro shop to the cart ladies. The pro shop has a fair selection of everything. The grill has burgers, dogs, and sandwiches made to order. Other amenities include an event center and an outstanding practice range enhanced by a putting green and short-game complex.

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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. 

 

About Texas Outside

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