Westfields Golf Club Clifton, VA

Fall 2002
Westfields Gof Club Website

FACILITIES
CONDITIONING
COURSE
STAFF
Pro Shop
9
Tee Boxes
9
Yardage Marker
8
Attendants
8
Range
8
Fairways
9
Pace of Play
9
Starter
9
Practice Green
9
Rough
8
Scenery
8
Marshals
8
Carts
8
Greens
9
Architecture
9
PGA Pro
9
Restaurant
8
Bunkers
9
Challenge
9
Pro Shop Staff
9
19th Hole
9
Water Hazards
9
Overall:
9
Overall:
9
Overall:
9
Overall:
9

REVIEW:
When one considers all the factors that make up a golfing experience, Westfields golf club is an ideal golf course. This is not so say that golfers will plan vacations around it like Pebble Beach or flock overseas to play it like St. Andrews. However, it embodies everything good one would want in a golf course for just about anyone who plays the game. And even more so, it stands as a middle ground in ways that other courses don’t seem to do these days. It is a course that can be all things for all people. Starting with the design of the course, Westfields mantra is simple. Good shots are rewarded and bad shots are not. The layout is straightforward with distinguishable landing areas & greens. There are no blind shots, yet the course has enough shaping to keep each hole interesting. After a round, one can uniquely remember each hole. Designers tend to fall in to the trap of having a few signature holes, generally consisting of water-laden par threes, excessive bunkering, or highly perched tee boxes as their main distinction. The result is often a couple of memorable holes and the rest are rather ubiquitous par 4’s and 5’s. Instead, Westfields relies on solid layouts generally made up of from tree-lined holes winding through acutely sculpted fairways with large bunkers and green sizes/sloping that run the gamut. Add to it tee boxes suitable for every ability, and you have a course equipped for beginners, accomplished, and professionals alike. Additionally, Westfields is a superb venue for corporate outings.

While just about every course in the DC area was punished by the severe heat and drought this year, somehow the conditioning at Westfields managed to flourish. With the exception of some thin rough (no golfer should ever complain about that), the course was in exceptional shape. The greens are among the best in the area and rolled true on all 18 holes. As even in more mild months, the fairways were still lush and green. The greenskeeping staff are certainly among the best in the area.

The standout holes include the front side include the par 3 third and par 4 sixth. Hole 3 first catches your eye as you turn down the road that leads to the clubhouse. Surrounded by boulders and wild grasses, it really wets your appetite for the upcoming round. However, the hole is more than just eye-candy. Where as the first two holes are void of any real trouble, Westfields may get some strokes back at the first par 3. Playing almost 200 yards from the tips to an oblong green with trouble in all four directions, accuracy is at a premium. If you are fortunate to hit the green in regulation, par is a good possibility, but not a guarantee.

The sixth hole is a long par four with a peculiar entry to the green. That’s not to say it’s unorthodox, but one must execute two exceptional shots in a row on what is the longest par four at Westfields. Ball position in the fairway will decide if you have to hit over 100 yard long sand bunker guarding the green nestled behind it or just over the corner of the bunker. As with many holes at Westfields, pin position here can mean the difference between birdie, par, bogey, or worse.

The par 5 eleventh and par 4 sixteenth provide the best holes on Westfields back nine. A slight dogleg left from the tee boxes, it is reachable to the longer player at just over 500 flat yards. However, a deft putting stoke is also need to navigate the roller coaster like hump splitting the green into two distinct shelves not readily apparent from the fairway. The eleventh is the kind of hole that can turn a golfers momentum in either direction during a round.

On the sixteenth tee, there is no room for argument. There is a precise landing area and one must try to put the ball there. It’s not necessarily true target golf, but it’s pretty close. The idea on this hole is to hit enough club to have a crisp approach to a suspended green leveled into the side of a steep hill that runs down to water below. Those who are adept at shaping shots can be more aggressive from the tee. However, there is little room for error with both a gully running diagonally if a draw is accentuated. Additionally, a steep grade runs parallel to the gully provides for only for a pitch out for those shots that fade or roll through the landing area.

The amenities at Westfields are all in place. There is an extensive clubhouse that features a well-stocked proshop, full locker room facilities, and a restaurant. Westfields is truly an ideal golf experience.

RATING:
GolfTest USA recommends Westfields Golf Club as an “Elite Course” golf course in the Washington, DC area.

Elite Course:
The best the area has to offer
Must Play Course:
Don’t miss playing here
Quality Course:
Good solid track
Average Course:
A standard golf experience
Only in a Pinch:
Below average golf