Set in the heart of the beautiful Hunter Valley, Easts Leisure & Golf, incorporating Maitland Golf Club, provides the perfect setting for golfers of all levels.
The course at Easts is Australia's fourteenth oldest Golf Club, having been established on 12 June 1899, with golf still played on the original site.
The course has developed over more than one hundred years into a mix of magnificent tree lined holes, eight of which feature water hazards that flow from a One Mile Creek and strategically placed dams.
Every hole at Easts has a rich history of deeds past and these feats seem to get better every year. Following is a brief history of the course's holes and a guide of how to best navigate them.
Hole 1: The Hollywood (PAR 4) - 357m
Known as Hollywood after a former President of Maitland, Dr Hollywood, this straight away par 4 provides a forgiving tee shot best shaped left to right to a large sloping landing zone. This leaves a mid to short iron approach shot to an elevated oval shaped green with enough hidden borrow to ensure a regulation two putt is not achieved without caution.
Hole 2: Dunk (PAR 4-5) - 418m
This hole is named after the legendary Australian golfer Billy Dunk, who on his way to winning the prestigious 1960 NSW PGA Championship, made an albatross on the hole when it was a par 5. Since then, the downhill dog leg left has been transformed into the most challenging hole on the course, now as a par 4. An accurate and well struck drive is required to avoid water left and trees right, leaving a long approach shot to a small green. The green is guarded by both water and dense paper bark trees, further adding to this hole's tough reputation.
Hole 3: Brush Box (PAR 3) - 180m
Brush Box is a picture perfect uphill par 3, which has the teeing area surrounded by reed lined water hazards that are home to a large range of birdlife. Your tee shot needs to carry all the way to this generous but undulating green that slopes back to front. A bunker left and mounds and trees on the right make errant tee shots awkward to get up and down to salvage par.
Hole 4: The Oval (PAR 5) - 464m
The Oval is an undulating par 5 with a demanding green nestled into a hill that has out of bounds lurking only metres behind. A tee shot shaped to the right side of the fairway opens up an opportunity of hitting the green in two for longer players. If not in reach, a well position lay up to the left side of the fairway gives a short iron approach to a green that is best to have an uphill putt on.
Hole 5: Tubman’s Avenue (PAR 3) - 143m
Called Tubman's Avenue, this mid length par 3 features an out of bounds fence along the right hand side to a kidney shaped green positioned diagonally to the golfer on the tee. Narrow at the front and widening to the back, the green is well guarded by three bunkers. Club selection is critical to ensure the ball lands safely on the green so as not to leave what can be a very demanding chip shot.
Hole 6: Fade a Way (PAR 4) - 304m
Fade a Way was certainly named by a right hand golfer. A drive best shaped left to right leaves a mid to short iron to a large but undulating green. The green is protected by two bunkers with the large deep bunker at the front being the feature. Mishit approaches finding this hazard leave a very demanding sand save for par.
Hole 7: The Gap (PAR 5) - 465m
It's still known as The Gap, however the gap no longer exists on this tight dog leg par 5 that also features a very demanding green. The right hand rough line has become a heavily wooded area over the years that has progressively shut the gap where longer hitters used to be able to shape a second shot onto the green. Now best played as a three shot hole, a drive up the left side leaves a mid to long iron layup providing a short iron to the green. Any approach shot beyond the flag presents a difficult downhill putt across this heavily sloped green.
Hole 8: Postinatus (PAR 4) - 308m
This short but demanding par 4 is known as Postinatus. The hole is named after a champion race horse that won the 1913 Melbourne Cup and was trained on a track that encircled the golf course up until 1988. An exacting shot from the tee best shaped left to right will set up a mid to short iron to attack the green, which is protected by sweeping bunkers on the left and right side.
Hole 9: Cameron (PAR 4) - 348m
Cameron named after Mac Cameron, a past member who started the planting of the forest that now fiercely protects the right side of this dog leg par 4. Cutting this corner can leave only a short pitch to this historic green, but is a dangerous option. A shot to the corner leaving a mid to short iron to the green is the safer approach. Players should also note 'The Arbour' located on the right side of the green, which was the entry point to the course for many years. As legend has it at Maitland, the President of the day was the first to enter the course on each day's play and no golfers were allowed out until he had passed through.
Hole 10: The Creek (PAR 4) - 326m
The 10th is known as The Creek for obvious reasons as players hit their approach to the green. This short but demanding straight away par 4 features a water hazard in front that guards the green and will consume any shot not struck well. A mid to short iron approach from a downhill lie is required to hit this green. If in doubt, a well-positioned layup can be a wise option.
Hole 11: River Oaks (PAR 3) - 169m
One Mile Creek and the hazard that it provides features strongly on this solid par 3 raised green. A shot missed marginally left requires a lofted chip and can be the better option, as a short missed right leaves either a bunker shot or a delicate pitch to a green that slopes away.
Hole 12: The Dog Leg (PAR 4) - 335m
One Mile Creek again features on this classic par 4 hole aptly named The Dog Leg. Many players' hopes for the day have been dashed as they attempt to fly the corner of this hole that requires a progressively longer tee shot the further right they aim. The creek is out of bounds and not a hazard so a pruden tee shot is required to leave a mid to short iron to a long narrow green protected by a solitary bunker on the right.
Hole 13: The Quarry (PAR 3) - 121m
The old gravel quarry that divides the tee and the green makes this par 3 one of Maitland's most memorable holes. The Quarry requires an exacting tee shot across the abyss to this raised green encircled with sand and grass bunkers. The bunker to the left of the green in particular can leave all but the most skilled golfer a little frustrated. A well struck mid to short iron may avoid the dangers that this hole offers, but will still leave a demanding putt on this small but undulating green.
Hole 14: The Pipeline (PAR 5) - 464m
This par 5 is split by the pipeline that provides the hole's name and the two fairways that lead to an uphill second shot and then to the green. A tee shot placed just short of the pipeline allows a second shot to a target tucked away to the right, longer hitters can get close if not on with a shot shaped from left to right. If not in reach, a well positioned lay up to the left side of the fairway gives a short iron appoach to a large green that slopes right to left away from a sizeable bunker.
Hole 15: RAP (PAR 5) - 432m
Although now gone, this short par 5 still bears the name RAP, short for Regimental Aid Post. This structure was a feature on this hole for many years and for a long time housed the Club's halfway house just to the right of the tee. This hole gives players a chance to redeem their round with a drive placed just to the left of the fairway bunkers, giving them a possibility to get close and perhaps on in two. A smaller raised green still provides some defence to the hole, especially if approached from the wrong angle. A well placed pitch or putt can provide a much needed birdie late in the round.
Hole 16: Darcy (PAR 4) - 367m
This long downhill dog leg features lines of casuarinas down both the rough lines and frames this great looking hole beautifully. The hole, known as Darcy, after Australian boxing legend Les Darcy, who was born in Maitland in 1895, requires a solid tee shot best shaped right to left. This leaves a mid to short iron second shot played over One Mile Creek to a small elevated green guarded by two challenging bunkers.
Hole 17: Twins (PAR 3) - 146m
Two iron bark trees positioned directly in line with the heart of the green give this hole its name of Twins. The Twins guard this generous, but undulating green, that is protected left and right by two cavernous bunkers and One Mile Creek to the right and over the back. This is a target that if not hit from the tee, is best missed short.
Hole 18: Fry’s Forest (PAR 4) - 366m
Known as Fry’s Forest this challenging par 4 takes you back up the hill to a green framed by the facilities magnificent Clubhouse. This hole offers an open landing area with a drive best shaped left to right, once you are over One Mile Creek that cuts across the fairway that is. This leaves a long to mid iron to a green protected by two bunkers that will catch any errant shot. There are still challenges once on this large green as a fierce slope from back to front can make the last putts of the round even more interesting, particularly if the result of the game is in the balance.
Hole 19: 88m
No It’s not the Club’s famous Hargy Bar, and yes we can count at Maitland. We have a 19th that is brought into play when the Club is developing another hole on the course proper. Found to the left of the 7th tee at only 88 metres long, the 19th still demands some respect as the raised sloping green taunts golfers thinking of an easy conquest.