WISCONSIN GOLFER l SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2011
piece of golf course property. Golf has
been played on this parcel of land at the
foot of Granddad’s Bluff since at least
1892, and it was home to La Crosse CC
from 1900 until 1994, when the private
club moved to Onalaska.
Forest Hills is also special because of its
wonderful terrain. Fairways crawl up rocky
bluffs, clutch to wooded hillsides and
tumble down through hollows. Nos. 12-16
occupy a particularly pretty distant section
of the property. The highest point on the
course is the 16th green.
FOREST HILLS GC BEGINS
AND ENDS WITH A RAILROAD THEME. A BUSY
RAILWAY – AVERAGING
ABOUT THREE TRAINS PER
HOUR – PASSES THROUGH
And Forest Hills begins and ends with a
railroad theme. A busy railway – averaging
about three trains per hour – passes
through the property. The rails cross the
first and 18th fairways and extend all the
way down the left side of Nos. 8 and 9.
(Warning: The choo-choo always has the
right of way. No racing the train. No hitting
balls at or over the train.)
course, is a links-style layout situated on a
plateau just east of the Mississippi River
and Trempealeau’s historic downtown.
Designed by Ed Riley, the course offers
hazards in the form of mounding and long
grasses, and water comes into play on
Trempealeau Mountain also offers a terrific practice facility.
holes, and lots are still available.
Forest Hills is owned by the city of La
Crosse and managed by Kemper Sports.
Located just east of La Crosse in the
Barre Mills area, Fox Hollow GC features a
fun 18-hole course winding through a mix
of bluffs and lowlands. The course measures 5,686 yards from the back tees and
offers more elevation changes on the back
nine. The par-3 17th and its island green
are a focal point of the inward nine, and
the 16th and 18th greens are impacted by
Fox Hollow is busy with weddings
throughout the summer season. And local
folks in the know flock to the facility’s
sports bar and grill year-round for fish fries,
burgers and homemade pizzas.
Maple Grove opened as a nine-hole layout in 1929. The second nine was added
in the 1960s, but by the early 2000s the
course began to show some wear and tear.
Since 2005, a new effort has been initiated
to bring the course back up to its previously high standards.
The Swift family has owned Walsh Golf
Center in La Crosse since 1980. The operation includes a nine-hole executive course
measuring 2,200 yards from the back tees
and a miniature golf course, but the business focuses on instruction as much as it
does play. Individual, group and junior sessions are offered, and the facilities include
a full range, practice green and bunker.
Maple Grove also offers a “Concerts on
the Green” series throughout the summer
Walsh Golf Center offers leagues and a
full golf shop with PGA professional instruction.
The rugged terrain east and north of La
Crosse holds a few additional golf treasures.
Another memorable hole is the scenic
fourth, a medium-length par-4 forcing a
tee shot over a deep ravine.
Maple Grove GC in West Salem is located about 15 minutes from downtown
La Crosse and just south of I-90. The par-
71 course plays through rolling hills and a
housing development and measures 6,411
yards from the back tees. Nos. 16-18
wander through a cluster of ponds, and
the picturesque par-4 fifth hole requires a
carry over water.
The Scenic Valley Addition is a residen-
tial development adjacent to the final four
The ridges and hollows of the Coulee
Region are more distant visual treats than
actual golf course challenges at Trempealeau
Mountain GC in Trempealeau.
“The Mountain,” as some locals call the
The Riverbend GC near Melrose is a
family-owned nine-hole course on densely
wooded property adjacent to the Black
River in southern Monroe County. The
course was designed by Dr. Gordon Emer-