Paul Atkinson of Newcastle Upon Tyne, reviews the Queen’s Course at Gleneagles, Perthshire, Scotland
Following an early morning outing on the King’s Course I wanted to settle the score on the small, cuter and equally impressive Queen’s course.
Right behind the clubhouse the first tee awaits with a sweeping dogleg stretching away in front of you on this 370 yard hole that plays more like 400.
My tip is don’t even think of drawing it around the trees as you won’t carry it far enough. Keep it right and take an extra club for your second shot.
The second is a lovely little par 3. Finding the green is a great result, the cavernous bunkers in front of the green spell double bogey.
The third is a long straight par four generally played into the prevailing breeze making it a good hole to par, even moreso with the half dozen or so bunkers protecting the greenside.
The fourth is a nice little par four with out of bounds close to the green so be careful.
Five is a corking par four that’s definitely a club more than it looks, and once again the green is three putt country if you don’ t club up.
#6 Paul’s favourite hole at the Gleneagles Estate
The sixth is the best hole on the estate in my opinion – a sweet par four straight and tight with out of bounds on the right and a cheeky bunker near the landing area with trouble on the left.
Not much to worry about there then – if you’ve held your nerve the mid/long iron to a raised green will test them again, but err to the left and you’ll have a canny chance for par.
Another brilliant hole follows and the 7th is the only par five from all tees on the Queen’s and takes you out to the furthest westerly point on the course.
Watch out for Deer as this is where they seem to gather. Keep your drive down the right of the fairway and just go for the second over the bunkers to the well protected green.There’s not future if you miss the green right.
The front 9 finishes with a toughie. You have to drive blind aiming toward a large bunker just to get a view of the green with your second and a whiff of a chance at par.
Lovely hole the 10th .Sweeps around the corner (don’t mess with the left as you have huge trees to overcome for your second if you do) through a tight entrance to a large flat green – a birdie chance but only for the most accurate.
Birdie Central at the 11th – Short, slight dogleg hole, you’ll have a wedge in after a good drive.
Rare sighting of Golden Eagles
Another belter on the 12th. Drive to the top of the hill and down to the green – plays long off the yellows, short off the Reds (par 5 off the back tees) so it was nice to make par here. The day was made special by the sighting of a pair of Golden Eagles playing just above us – magical!
Little Tiddler follows but avoid the Eerie grave to your right but a good 9 iron will see you ok.
Keep your head on the next par 3, played a little longer than expected, beautiful looking hole though with a huge tier (read Tears) that can (read did) cause grief.
Potentially driveable par four 15th if you’re a huge hitter, but best kept to the left, wedge in and you have a good shot at your birdie – great hole.
Keep your drive left on the 16th which is relatively mild with large bunkers to your left on the approach with what should be a mid iron.
The 17th par three is a real gem with a long iron into a two tier green 200 yards below you. There is a huge bunker to your right, the lip is about 11 feet high, (witnessed a career up and down here by my playing partner Barry).
With sadness in the heart the 18th (our 36th today) arrives which demands a good drive to leave a short iron to the green right of the clubhouse (don’ t hit it!) to close out the deal – Ahh what a great place to play golf and a fabulous experience.
Our group preferred the Queen’s over the Kings, there’s little in it but she is a little prettier on the eye.
Thank you Gleneagles for providing these once in every 20 years experiences, an experience so good you’ll never forget it, and be sure to grab any chance you get to play here, at any time of the year.
You can also read Paul’s review of Gleneagles’ King’s Course in our Reader Review section.