Group golf trip from Moore Park
Recently I was lucky enough to escort a group of members from Moore Park to the unbelievable King Island, playing both Cape Wickham and Ocean Dunes golf courses.
This is definitely a trip you do not want to miss out on.
The first thing that struck me with King Island was how big it actually was. The distance between Cape Wickham and Ocean Dunes is a healthy 45 minute drive, through open fields and containing some of the healthiest cattle I have ever seen.
Our first course that we played was Cape Wickham, and it was played in no less than 60 km/h winds! Like when playing golf in Scotland or Ireland, you suck it up and just try your best!
The course itself is extremely rugged with some of the best views I have ever seen. It is Links golf at its best, with hard fairways and undulations galore.
What I loved about Cape Wickham was the amount of options one has when playing approach shots. It is not your traditional course where if you hit the ball short it will stay there but there is definitely the opportunity to hit a 5 iron from 100 metres, bounce it in to a slope which kicks the ball on to another slope on the green and in turn runs down towards the hole.
The views from every hole are extraordinary, the ocean is ever present and you really have the feeling you are in the middle of nowhere! The rough is unforgiving but the fairways are fairly generous. There are many holes that off the tee leave you thinking “so what do I have to do here?” but upon reaching the fairway, there are definitely bail out areas aplenty. It is definitely a course that you have to play more than once and if I was to do it over again, I would love to play each course twice again.
Cape Wickham - accommodation
The accommodation at Cape Wickham was really nice, beautiful rooms overlooking the golf course and all amenities you would need. The clubhouse is very basic with it serving as a restaurant and Pro Shop all in one.
Ocean Dunes is a very different course to Cape Wickham. Very basic clubhouse again, and I can only see both being upgraded as the courses becoming more established.
The Ocean is ever present again, but there is definitely more of a manicured look and shape to Ocean Dunes and a little different to Cape Wickham’s more rugged feel.There are certainly more bunkers, and definitely strategically placed to catch any errant shot both off drives as well as in to greens. The greens are definitely a lot quicker and more undulating than Cape Wickham. Cape Wickham has more of a feeling that the fairways run in to the greens and are a very similar grass whereas Ocean Dunes had more of a bent grass and different fairway grass.
There are massive distances between greens and tee-boxes and I would suggest booking a cart if you don’t like a good long walk! With these distances it does feel like you are playing each individual hole with not much of a few of other holes but more the natural scenery which I really loved about the course.
With Cape Wickham the fun was more with the approach shots whereas Ocean Dunes was all about where you place your drive, leaving different lines in to greens and opening the hole up so to speak. There is a lot of fun to be had on the greens as well, with their speed and slopes making you aim places that feel ridiculous, but end up at the hole somehow!
So which course is best?
In all I had a really amazing trip and lots of fun with our members. Of the two courses I preferred Cape Wickham due to it’s rugged look and more natural feel, but both courses are equally amazing and a trip I can’t recommend enough!
Moore Park’s chosen provider was Air Adventures with all transfers and pick-ups running seamlessly. There is constant communication and at no point do you feel like you are lost or in the wrong place!
As far as the trip goes, you are required to make the flight from Sydney to Melbourne. To be safe, I flew up on the night before to avoid any unseen delays. The following morning, there was a chauffeur from Black Fleet Chauffered Cars (organised by Air Adventures again) waiting for all of us for the short trip to Essendon Airport. All guests are required to bring a smaller golf bag on the trip, so no heavy tour bags!! The Aircrafts are very strict on weight allowances, and bags can be provided at both golf courses.
Private charter flight
Sharp Airlines looked after our flights from Essendon to King Island and back, they were very professional and the planes were relatively spacious. The pilots were very knowledgeable and we were given some interesting facts during the flights. The pilots also pointed out landmarks upon approach.
Once the plane landed, luggage was taken care of and our bus driver was on hand to help out and whisk us away!
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