It’s been nearly 4 years since I last played Chick Evans Golf Course, which was my first round for the project and my first course played in Chicago. This weekend, Markus and I, along with David, a fellow flight member in the Windy City Golf League, headed over to Morton Grove, Illinois for a round at the course. Since the overall structure of my posts have changed quite a bit since the start of this project, I thought I would provide a bit more detail on the course.

Located approximately 15 miles from downtown Chicago, Chick Evans Golf Course is part of the Forest Preserve Golf courses, which operates ten golf courses throughout Chicagoland (including Joe LouisBilly CaldwellIndian BoundaryRiver Oaks, and Meadowlark, five other courses I have played so far). Like all other Forest Preserve Golf courses, Chick Evans is a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary. The course is one of the closest 18-hole, 68+ par courses to downtown Chicago.

The course features three par-3 and two par-5 holes for a total par of 71 at a length of 5,626 yards from the back tees. Playing from the white tees, the length drops to 5,363 yards. Being a par 71 course, as you can imagine, many of the par-4 holes are really short, averaging around 300 yards in length. This gives players with straight drives and a good short game many opportunities to make birdies and shoot low scores. The fairways are generally straight, open, and surrounded by large trees, though on many of the holes, if you slice your ball right, it’s probably going to go out of bounds. Water hazards touch six of the holes, five of which you’ll need to carry over either on your tee shot or on your way to the green. The most notable hole, mainly because it’s known to be the most difficult, is the 3rd hole (a 489 yard par-5), where you’ll need to carry water twice, once on your tee shot and once on your approach shot. The water hazard that runs through four of the holes is actually part of the north branch of the Chicago River. Some bunkers can be found throughout the course, mostly near the greens, but are very seldom (there might only be two or three). The greens are pretty large and generally flat. The speed of the greens were seemed very random throughout my round.

After playing many of the Forest Preserve Golf courses, I think I can safely say that Chick Evans is one of the worst maintained courses they oversee. The tee boxes and greens were in pretty poor condition, and many areas of the fairways were under repair or should have been marked as under repair. I have a couple different opinions on this matter. With Chick Evans being one of the closest full courses to Chicago, it would be nice if it was in better condition. On the other hand, I think this is a good course for beginners to play, primarily because of the short course length and many opportunities to shoot low scores. With these two thoughts in mind, I think that the cost of the greens fees should be lower, primarily because at some of the other Forest Preserve Golf courses that cost close to the same amount, the level of play is much better and the course length is more (like Joe Louis, River Oaks, and Indian Boundary).

Luckily, I played a better round than the first time I played this course (thank goodness… that would be bad if I didn’t). My drives were random, but mostly pushing right, again. I think I have too many swing thoughts going on in my head during my back swing, and as a result, my swing doesn’t feel as smooth as it used to. I tried a couple of times to ignore my pre-shot routine and just hit the ball. Sometime this works, sometimes it doesn’t. The fun thing about this course though, is that when I would make a solid drive, my approach shot would be less than 100 yards from the green, which is a distance I’m comfortable and confident with. I had some inconsistencies and distance problems with my iron shots. Throughout the round, I tried to remember to keep my posture correct, which seemed to cause the most issues last time. Overall, my iron shots were random. I thought my wedge shots could have been better, mostly in the distance control area. I need to work on setting myself up for easier 1-putts. My putting was pretty random, but I’m going to blame that mostly on the quality of the greens. I ended up 1-putting five times and 3-putting once.

I ended up shooting a 99 (28 over par, 57 on the front nine, 42 on the back nine). Much my round at Glencoe Golf Club, I had a bad front nine, plagued by penalties, and a much better back nine. My score consisted of four pars, seven bogeys, three double bogeys, and all others worse. David ended up shooting a 96, which gave him a league win by three strokes. He had a much more consistent game and sunk a couple of clutch putts to secure par on a couple holes. If it wasn’t for those penalties in the front nine, it would have been a much closer match (and I might have came out with a win).

Chick Evans Golf Course – Scores & Stats
Course length: 5,363 yards (white tee boxes)
Course par: 71
Course rating/slope: 66.0/109 (white tee boxes)
My score: 99 (28 over par)

Chick Evans Golf Course
6145 Golf Rd
Morton Grove IL 60053