Over this past weekend, Chris Theisen and I had the opportunity to play Mystic Hills Golf Course in Culver, Indiana. Mystic Hills is the northernmost course on the Pete Dye Golf Trail (Check out the VisitIndiana site for more on the trail). With the Pete Dye Golf Trail officially launching last Thursday, I was anxious to check out one of the 7 courses on the trail I hadn’t yet played.
We arrived in Culver early so we’d have time to swing by Cafe Max for breakfast. Even though this was a golf trip, I must mention the delicious breakfast at this small town cafe. The Blueberry oatmeal pancakes and sinful french toast (basically a fried cinnamon roll) were outstanding. After getting some energy, we were ready to check out the course we’d heard so much about.
One thing I really appreciate about Culver is that whole “small town” feeling (you know, the kind where you can tell people are really sincere and appreciate life) and upon arriving at the course that feeling was continued. We were greeted promptly by Shirley who welcomed us to the course. She told us how much fun she had at the Pete Dye Golf Trail launch event and seemed thrilled that Mystic Hills was able to be a part of it. Shirley also filled us in on the Dye Tees (the back tees at the course marked with a skull pictured to the right). The “Dye Tees” are a great idea – something Chris and I definitely feel like they can use in marketing.
Shirley then introduced us to Earl, the Golf Course Superintendent. Earl told us the key to the course were the greens – boy was he telling the truth! They were some of the smoothest, quickest greens I’ve ever putted on and it was a treat. They were so well maintained, I’d compare it to taking a hockey puck and just giving it a soft push across the ice – the ball just kept rolling!
The front nine at Mystic Hills is a links style open feel which was built on sand. The back nine features some tighter holes with a more traditional look. As Chris said, “it really is the best of both worlds.” The weather was perfect and there seemed to be a steady flow of golfers out on the course, especially by the time we got back in the clubhouse. Overall, the course was in very good shape, even with the lack of rain we’ve had this summer in Indiana.
After finishing up our round, we had the chance to chat with the Head Golf Professional, Dave Pugh. He told us the story of Mystic Hills and how Pete Dye was very hands-on once he decided to commit to the project. At one point, Dye even kicked Dave off a tractor to take over creating a bunker! Knowing the story behind the family-run course sure does make it seem special to Indiana and the Pete Dye Golf Trail.
The Head Pro (Dave Pugh) even mentioned that he’d recently bought some more property on the course and would be opening up a stay-n-play package for golfers that wanted to check out this course – perfect for people from out of state or even those traveling a long distance within Indiana. I am sure VisitIndiana.com will add this to their site as soon as it’s ready.
In conclusion, Mystic Hills Golf Course is definitely worth the trip to Culver, IN. In fact, if you like the small town feel and good eating – I’d recommend making a day of it. There were a few additional places we wanted to check out in downtown Culver, IN, but I guess we’ll have to save that for the next time. :)
If you love checking out new golf courses, take a look at this free directory of Indiana golf courses.