Shortly after my lesson with Greg Baresel, I headed over to Meadowlark Golf Course for my first match of my Windy City Golf League season. Meadowlark is located in Hinsdale, Illinois, approximately 15 miles west of downtown Chicago. The course is part of the Forest Preserve Golf courses, which operates ten golf courses throughout Chicagoland (including Joe Louis, Chick Evans, Billy Caldwell, Indian Boundary, and River Oaks, five other courses I have played so far). Of the ten courses, Meadowlark is one of two 9-hole courses, with the other being Billy Caldwell. Like all other Forest Preserve Golf courses, Meadowlark is a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary.

The course features two par-3 and two par-5 holes for a total par of 36 at a length of 3,404 yards from the back tees. Both of the par-3 holes are long, measuring in at more than 190 yards from the back tees, and the par-5 6th measures in at 563 yards from the back tees. The fairways are wide and mostly flat and straight, surrounded by large, thick trees on all sides. Water hazards touch only two holes, one of which (the par-5 6th) you’ll need to carry over on your tee shot. There are no bunkers on the entire course, which gives some relief to those prone to finding themselves in the sand. The greens are large and generally flat, and didn’t really give me any problems throughout the round. They played slow for my round, but that could have been because of the morning rains.

I played this round with a fellow league member, Cory. We decided on playing Meadowlark for a couple of good reasons: it’s close enough to downtown, playing nine holes is less of a time commitment for those (i.e. Cory) having other engagements, and, coming off a lesson that changed my swing plane, I didn’t know if I would enjoy playing a full 18.

Surprisingly, I didn’t play too bad during the round. Since I had new swing-thoughts from my lesson, I really tried to focus on my takeaway and general swing plane. My drives were a little inconsistent, but mostly pushed right. I’m completely fine with this, as anytime I can play a round with no drastic slices, I’m happy. My iron shots were pretty good. I was making solid impact, keeping my shots straight, and getting the distance I should expect from my usual iron shots (maybe even longer than normal). Overall, I’m really happy with the improvement is saw out of my irons. My wedges were pretty good again, as was my putting. The only thing that gave me troubles were the trees. I hit a couple shots into the trees, which promptly batted down any ball hoping to make it through. I thoroughly blame the trees for my high scores (all in good fun, of course).

I ended up shooting a 52 for the round (16 over par), which broke down into five bogeys, two double bogeys, and others worse. I 1-putted twice and had no 3-putts. Cory ended up shooting a 55, which gave me a league win by 3 strokes.

Before I end, I’ll mention that, while I was waiting to tee off, I ran into Nick (from my round at Billy Caldwell), who is now the manager at Meadowlark. Along with talking to Nick, I also had a nice chat with Mary, who works in the golf shop (and has been around Meadowlark for a long time). It was really nice talking with both them. As I’ve mentioned many times in the past, it’s meeting people like Nick and Mary that makes this project so much fun.

Meadowlark Golf Course – Scores & Stats
Course length: 3,253 yards (white tee boxes)
Course par: 36
Course rating/slope: 35.1/111 (white tee boxes)
My score: 52 (16 over par)

Meadowlark Golf Course
11599 31st Street
Hinsdale, IL 60523