For the most part Meadow Springs shows off Robert Trent Jones II’s mellow side with its challenging but fair design. Play well here and your score will reflect it. The grooming is impeccable with superb putting surfaces in a variety of shapes and sizes, plus immaculate couch fairways bending delightfully around large native trees and voracious fairway bunkers and without cart paths to interrupt their beauty.
The first seven holes, carved through the open bushland, are the best on the course. The subtle undulation, classical bunkering and pure sand based surfaces remind one of Melbourne’s finest Sandbelt courses with each hole totally private and complete with a vast array of native flora and fauna (Kangaroos abound).
The nature of the land and composition of the residential development unfortunately dictated two significantly different nines with the character of the course altering drastically from the 8th tee. From serene Sandbelt to pure resort, water hazards feature prominently on the next four holes. The 8th and 11th are remarkably similar mid length par three’s over ponds while sandwiched between is a long hole with a water carry and a tricky short par four with a small slippery green best approached from close to the lake.
There is a further change in character as the finishing holes play through an ancient Tuart forest with towering 200 foot gums, dramatic elevation change and some trademark Trent Jones thrills and challenges. An example is the notorious uphill 17th with a wicked three-and-a-half tiered green that can turn the sweat into tears with one misjudged putt. If the pin is on the back shelf here you may need to take an extra three clubs from the fairway!
Like his father, Robert Trent Jones Jr. is a master of the extravagant yet Meadow Springs is proof that his company also has the ability to restrain this creative flair, moderate his design and create sensible classical golf holes.