Golf Hole of the Week: No. 11 at Settler’s Hill

The view of the par-5 11th green at Settlers Hill from the fairway. A shot off the tee faces water, then woods on both sides, followed by a creek and marshy area, then an undulating green on a hill surrounded by bunkers. |  PROVIDED PHOTO
The view of the par-5 11th green at Settlers Hill from the fairway. A shot off the tee faces water, then woods on both sides, followed by a creek and marshy area, then an undulating green on a hill surrounded by bunkers. | PROVIDED PHOTO

Settler’s Hill Golf Course general manager John O’Connor says he hears someone who just played the course mention the 11th hole almost every day.

“Whether it’s the greatest hole or hardest hole or just unique, that’s what you hear,” O’Connor said. “There’s no question it’s as tough as any hole around.”

Disaster awaits literally on every side on the 11th at this Kane County Forest Preserve course in Batavia. A double bogey is not a bad score here. Single digits might be the better goal.

The par-5 hole plays 562 yards from the far back tees and 523 from the second set. The tee shot from the back requires a carry of 212 yards to get into play, and 185 just to avoid the water. Once on the dry side, the difficulty only increases.

“If they get across, there’s a strong pitch to the fairway, right to left that can cause the ball to go into the rough or into trees on the left,” O’Connor said.

And a slicer isn’t clear, since there are woods on both sides all the way down the fairway to a layup area in front of a creek and marshy area about 100-110 yards from the green. Long hitters might try to go for it in two or at least to try to carry the creek and marsh.

“The ideal spot is about 120 yards where it is semiflat,” O’Connor said.

The hard part isn’t over at this point, since the green is perched atop a big hill, leaving golfers who lay up guessing the distance on an uphill shot to a green guarded by big bunkers.

“Even the green isn’t that easy,” O’Connor pointed out. “It’s an undulating, pitched green.”

The hole plays at 388 from the front tees and 465 from the second set.

Players might not feel safe until they get to No. 12. And perhaps not then.

Settler’s Hill plays at a slope rating of 72.1 from the tips and 70.3 from the second set of tees and is operated for the forest preserve by GolfVisions Management Inc.

Gene Chamberlain

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