Picking the top par 3’s in all of Minnesota Golf is virtually impossible. In a state that boasts more than 400 golf courses, when undertaking this task, you’re bound to omit hundreds of beautiful golf holes that are tucked away at some of the best golf courses in the country. Yet, here’s a list of some of my favorite par 3 golf holes in Minnesota.
Deacon’s Lodge – Par 3, 17th
Put it this way, the 17th at Deacon’s Lodge is among the “King’s Dream 18,” a list of Arnold Palmer’s favorite 18 holes which he’s designed. The full listing is here in Kingdom Magazine. From the tips it plays 200-yards and from the forward tees a polite 108-yards. Regardless of where you tee it up, you will get a stiff challenge and a gorgeous view!
The Legend Course at Giants Ridge – Par 3, 17th
You’ve been through a challenging round. One hole no more spectacular than the next. You’re in your golf cart traveling to the 17th tee and you walk up the steps and see this view.
Guess what? You’re crossing water from one way or another. From the back tees, this beauty is a beast at 226 yards and there’s not much relief from the next set of tees at 216 yards. Your buddies might snicker and call you names, but no one will blame you if you have a career round going and play the forward tees from 137, but even there, you have got to carry the junk. So, as you’re sizing up the image, here’s one more thought – it plays a little longer than you think. Once you’re on the green, you’ll realize the view is even better than it was from the tee.
The Wilderness at Fortune Bay – Par 3, 3rd
The par 3, 3rd at The Wilderness at Fortune Bay may be the most majestic hole in the state. In a word – breathtaking. Standing above the hole on the tee box you have an intimidating carry, a tiered green that looks like footsteps and one that plays like a rollercoaster. Placement is key on this tee shot, but when you play this hole, all you can think of is, “just put it on the green!” Push it back to the tip and you’ll play 220 yards. It’s 166 yards from the white and a challenging 133 yards from the forward tees. Forget the yardage, when you get to the green, you’ll find a whole new set of challenges, but guaranteed, you’ll remember this hole for a long, long time.
The Pines at Grand View Lodge – Par 3, 7th Lakes Course
The Pines at Grand View Lodge started it all in the Brainerd Lakes Area back in 1991 and since then the area has become a golf mecca in the Upper Midwest. The Pines is a wonderful golf course with 27 holes of Championship Golf. The three nines include: The Lakes, The Woods and The Marsh. Tucked away on the 7th hole of the Lakes course is a gem of a hole and no one has captured the beauty of this hole (or most other golf holes in the state of Minnesota for that matter!) like Peter Wong. At 152 yards from the tip, the number alone won’t scare anyone, but the hole is cut out of the woods in a serene and gorgeous setting. Are there more dramatic and challenging par 3’s in the state? Sure. But this gem is, elegant. It’s pettite and lovely, but take it for granted and it’ll bite you in the behind!
The Legends Club – Par 3, 13th
Visit the Twin Cities and a trip to The Legends Club in Prior Lake is a must. You’ll feel like you’re in the north woods for the entire round and you’re less than 30 minutes from MSP International Airport. The 13th hole at The Legends Club is majestic and daunting. From the tips, you’ve got to negotiate trees and water from 209 yards out. The green is generously sized, but tiered, so you need to hit your shot to the “right” spot. No matter how you slice it – forward tees or back tees – you’re covering water, so if the hazard makes you squeamish, prepare to squeam! This golf hole is visually perfect and if you get to this course during the change of seasons, you’ll see why it’s one of my favorite par 3’s in the state.