Course Previews for First Time Plays

How many times have you showed up to a course for the first time, and thought about how differently you would play holes/shots if you had seen them before (e.g. I had no idea there was so much room there!?!??!)?

I get irrationally annoyed at this phenomena, and it sometimes ruins the entire playing experience. If you’re a golf course management perfectionist like me, you go on google earth and measure out different shots, carries, tee shot start lines, etc. I started putting together course previews together for an upcoming golf trip, and realized there are likely some other sickos doing the same thing. If you happen to fall into the aforementioned category of individuals, upload your course previews here for all the refugees to use as they see fit.

Here’s an example PowerPoint slide (lol) I put together of Lochenheath Golf Club’s 12th hole in preparation for a big golf trip. Feel free to comment, leave feedback, or improve upon my quick analysis.

Never again will we fall victim to phantom O.B., or the blind tee shots because it’s our first time at a venue. Cheers!


I draw my own yardage books and the like for courses I play a lot, so don’t get me wrong I’m totally into this kind of stuff…

But what I’ve found is the grint app provides just as much information as I can get myself, or more usually as well, for $40/year and it includes a HC.

That hole IS dope.

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I’d never heard of this app – from my initial research it looks super legit and eliminates the need to do any of this. For whatever reason, I can’t get into golf GPS apps on my phone during a round consistently and become way less analytical on the tee box if that’s the source of my information. Two reasons I still like putting this previews together:

  1. I draw from other sources of information, like flyovers, drone footage, etc. I pick up on details that apps generally don’t offer, like the slope on/around the green, or tell how drastically elevation changes for a given shot/hole. I usually jot those details down like you would on a yardage book.

  2. As you map out the hole, you think through the strategy of the hole and how you want to play it (like the example above). A lot of times, you can figure out exactly what the architect is trying to make you do/think about on a tee box when analyzing from an aerial view.

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Bluegolf is a great website for accessing course aerials and drawing out yardages.


Yes, shoutout to Blue Golf. I always like to prepare a hole by hole guide for a new course. I get made fun of by my group for doing this even though it’s not as if I print them out and hand them out to everyone. They just know I like to over prepare. But when the complaining starts after someone hits into a blind hazard off the tee I feel SO validated. Some of the sheen comes off when I then mishit it into the exact hazard but…alas.

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Hopefully some help in this department coming on the new website redesign… :grimacing:


i love this so much. I don’t go to this extent but if I’m playing a tourney or a great course on a golf trip and am only playing the course once I will find everything I can online for course management and take notes to bring when i play. Ideal scenario is doing that, then getting a practice round to confirm or adjust my notes and then have a good plan for the actual tourney but obviously that’s not possible in all cases.

Glad to know there are people that take it even further than I do!

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To be clear, I definitely don’t do this for every round. My thought is that if enough people have done something like this for enough courses, we can build up a pretty good library for people to use.

‘new website redesign’ is quickly approach ‘I promise we’ll drop the inside jokes pod’ level.

sorry for the cheap shot, siriusXM is playing through LCD Soundsystem “This is Happening” today to commemorate 10th anniversary so i’m feeling frisky right now

if enough people have done something like this for enough courses, we can build up a pretty good library for people to use.

Or if nothing else, we can enjoy the disagreements about “the best place to miss the green on hole x” and how many clubs difference a specific elevation drop is on hole Y. I am here for that.

I have also mapped out courses I have no chance of playing (ex. Pine Valley and Cape Kidnappers) which I think is the next level of obsession with this.