COPPER HILLS Golf Club (248-969-9808)
Michigan Golf Course Review - A U-tube video is available at the bottom of this review.
Located in Oxford Michigan, The Copper Hills Golf Club features 27 holes of unique championship golf. Each nine is quite different, providing great variety regardless of the
combination chosen for an 18 hole round. The Hill/Marsh layout plays up to 6734 yards long with a slope rating from 127 to 145. This is the toughest of the three possible 18's.
The Jungle/Hill plays to 6539 with slopes fluctuating from 123 to 141. Similar yardages and slope ratings are found on the Jungle/Marsh (6493 yards and 124-141 slope). All three
provide an interesting and challenging test and keep you on your toes. With 3 distinctive nines, it is like having 3 quality courses on one property. Golf publications have
determined this to be a top rate design. Out of 968 public golf courses in Michigan in 2001, Copper Hills was rated in the top ten by Golf Digest.
During our visit to Copper Hills on a gorgeous late May afternoon, we found the course to be in great shape. Two putting/chipping greens near the temporary clubhouse were put
to good use prior to our scheduled round. The club and ball washers provided for on each cart were a much appreciated perk. Most importantly, we were thankful for the highly
visible 150-yard stakes in the center of each fairway. When playing a course for the first time, a good yardage marking system helps with shot selection and speeds up play. In this
case, the stakes were effective as targets, particularly on doglegs and par fives. The Hill opens with one of the most beautiful and toughest holes of the course. This par five is
open off the tee, and demands an accurate and long second shot to the right center of the dogleg (right). From this side, you will find the easiest approach to a beautiful green
protected by water 30 yards in front. The par 4 second is a challenging uphill par four. Mounds on both sides of the fairway and a pond short right of the green make it tough. Make
it three challenging holes in a row - as the long par four third plays uphill over a marsh and water hazard, to an extremely undulating green. The 4th is a relatively short par 5. After
an uphill tee shot on this dogleg left, the approach will play downhill, with a marsh 60 yards in front coming into play. A very narrow fairway featuring sloping mounds and un-even
lies will confront you off the tee on number 5.
Take out an iron or "heaven wood' and lay-up to the 150 stake for a chance to score well on the shortest par four of this layout. The next few holes provide a little breathing room.
Six is an easy par 3 which is all carry, but plays at just 114 from the mid tees. The seventh is another short par four that is fairly open and plays to a slightly elevated green. A mid
range par 3 is next, featuring a carry over water and a ravine. The closing hole is the longest par four on the front. A marsh 90 yards from the putting surface means the approach
is all carry.
The Marsh nine opens with a very short dogleg right par four. A long tee shot over a marsh will put you in good position to score. Water near the back left of the green on # 2
(another short par 4) will add strokes for any approaches hit long. Play it short and this is an easy hole. The third is a very reasonable par 5, though ranked as the # 1 handicap on
the Marsh. Your second shot demands a carry over water. Negotiate this hazard successfully, and you should fare well. The fourth is a long par four that bends to the right off the
tee. Stay to the right side of the fairway for the best approach, which must carry a pond 60 yards out. Another reasonable par five (number 2 handicap) will play easy if you are long
off the tee to the uphill fairway. This is followed by one of the Copper Hills' signature holes.
This beautiful par three is almost all carry over water, with bunkers, marsh and ponds guarding the green. From the mid tees (175 yards), this hole plays tough. The seventh is a
short par four that demands accuracy on the approach. It is better to be long here, as water and sand guards the front of the putting surface. After a do-able mid-range par four, you
will find a unique finishing hole. Playing at just 107 yards from the Whites, this par three gives you a great shot at birdie on your final hole. Overall, we found the Marsh nine to be
quite a bit easier than the Hill course.
The Jungle nine features some extremely challenging green complexes (james Hoffa may be buried under the ridge to the right third of the green on 15!) with mounds and swales
plus interesting undulations. It is as beautiful as the other two layouts, and is one of the most demanding. Copper Hills Golf Club is well on its way to becoming one of the most
talked about golf courses in SE Michigan. The challenge and superior layout and conditions are definitely there. The surrounding country side is hilly and beautiful. The many
natural ponds and creeks found on this rolling terrain, provide a peaceful, isolated setting. A day here is well spent - and is definitely not "a good walk spoiled".
Check out the Two Guys Who Golf detailed information page on this course (which includes a link to the course's website if available) - click here.