Cougar Creek Golf Resort offers what golfers are looking for … and more
By Gord Montgomery
Tranquility. Beauty. Challenge. Those are the three main things people look for when they head out for a day of golf and that’s exactly what they’ll find, and more, at the Cougar Creek Golf Resort.
Located on the Yellowhead Highway west of Edmonton, Cougar Creek provides an exceptional golfing experience right from the first tee until the meal at the end of the day, said first year Head Professional Jake Behiels, who is entering his ninth year on the job at the track. Above all though, there is one major concern the staff at the facility have.
“Customer service is a huge aspect of our business,” Behiels noted. “We strive to continue that and really make it a fun and relaxed environment. People can come out, have fun on the course, have a meal, and leave happy.”
“We have to keep in mind we are a public golf course,” Behiels pointed out. “We do have a membership base as well so we have to ride that fine line where we don’t have too many tournaments where our members and public can, and can’t, book. We don’t have any events on Sundays and only one or two on Saturdays. We space those events out so we’re not blocking ideal tee times for our members and the public. And, we make sure we don’t have two events per day.”
The neat thing about Cougar Creek is its unique design, where the front nine holes are treelined and feature shorter yardages while the back nine opens up and stretches out making golfers use every club in their bag more than once during a round. Tee box selection is critical here and while the blue tees may seem the ideal spot for some to play from on the front, the yardage differences between there and the back can swing a good card to “oh-oh” territory in a hurry.
The third and fourth holes on the front nine are two great tests, the first a short par 3 and the second a long par 5. If you can stay out of the trees, or the water, which come into play on both, you know you’re off to a great start on what is a great golf course.
Since most players like the time to warm up before they hit the links, Cougar Creek fits the bill to perfection here. There is a great practice area at the course from the aquatic driving range to a couple of different areas that allow players the chance for some pre-game short game work in order to get your swing in fine form prior to stepping onto the first tee box, with its narrow, tree-lined fairway.
“The driving range is a nice feature we have that not many golf courses in Alberta have,” the head pro noted. “Then there’s the smaller putting green that’s near the first tee and also the large chipping/putting green where people can get warmed up.”
As with many golf courses these days, tournaments play a part of the yearly plan at Cougar Creek and with its setup it lends itself well to staging such events. But be assured, those big events don’t override the fact that this beauty also counts on the general public stopping in to have a few good whacks and a really good time.
“This is a great place to raise money for charities and give back to their customers, really make it a place where people can come out and have a blast! We are extremely well designed for events,” Our banquet hall seats 220 people and the golf course is great with a peaceful front nine with lots of room on the front nine for some cool and interesting things. We have a massive cart staging area,” so clubs are easily loaded onto the GPS-enabled rides. “On the screen, we can let everyone know who sponsors are, who’s putting on the event.”
The thing is though, those tournaments still leave a lot of room on the tee sheet for the casual player who just wants to go out and test their skills on a course that is fun to play and always leaves you wanting to come back for more.
While there are a lot of golf courses in the greater-Edmonton area, Cougar Creek Golf Resort is one of those that stands out from the crowd because of a number of things, said Behiels in closing. Included on his list were the fact that to the staff you’re the focus of their attention from the moment you walk into the pro shop until the time you leave.
“It’s relaxed out here. Laid back. Everyone comes out to enjoy themselves, have fun and that’s the way a golf course should be. People are happy and excited when they get here and it’s important to us that they’re happy and had a great time when they leave!”
To book an online tee time at Cougar Creek Golf Resort go to playgolfalberta.com and follow the links.