Ronald Palmer, course designer, and Michael Hurdzan, course architect, didn’t design Mallard Creek for the sake of the golf course, they designed it for the sake of the golfers. On the far west side of Cleveland, Ohio, in an era when many golf courses were being created to sell homes in country club developments, or to mimic the championship clubs we see on television each week, Mallard Creek was built instead with the real golfer in mind.
The fairways are wide and open. The roughs are trimmed right to the tree trunks. The trees themselves are trimmed up about 20 feet off the ground. The greens are large and rolling. The tees are spacious and elevated. The length is only average and there are no sand traps. All of these things keep play moving without the interruptions and frustrations of looking for balls, digging out traps, or searching into the woods.
However, this doesn’t mean that either of Mallard Creek’s regulation 18 hole courses are overly easy. Off the tee most golfers will see the wide, inviting fairways and get a bit overzealous. That’s when they find out how the rough cut got its name. And some oversized greens may leave many golfers feeling great about their approach shot, that is until it’s time to test those putting skills on true breaking, bent grass greens.
As a result, the “four handicapper” goes home unsure how they shot above their usual and the “double bogie golfer” finishes feeling good about hitting a lot of good golf shots. This design has proven to be a perfect balance of challenge and forgiveness, making Mallard Creek the ultimate destination for league play, outings, and the “real golfer” in general.