One of the greatest things about golf (besides the beverage cart) is that you can play a ragged, run-of-the-mill course and have the time of your life, or you can play a world-famous course and have the time of your life — the fun factor doesn’t necessarily correlate with the price. Mountain golf courses have an elevated appeal based on location alone. Here are three to play this summer.
Low Budget: Waterton Lakes Golf Course
Price: $59 (walking)
Course: 6,120 yards, Par 71/72
A visit to the century-old Waterton Lakes Golf Course is like stepping into some sort of funky golf course time machine. Year after year, decade after decade, not much seems to change here. And, to be honest, the “relic” qualities and vintage feel make for a pretty cool overall experience, while the jaw-dropping scenery is worth the price alone.
Medium Budget: Crowsnest Pass Golf Club
Price: $99 to $129; includes cart and driving range admission
Course: 6,659 yards, Par 72
In the heart of the Crowsnest Pass in Blairmore, Alta., the Crowsnest Pass Golf Club features eight new holes by talented Alberta architect Gary Browning and a stunning new-ish clubhouse (it opened in 2020), overlooking the action. The new additions give this historic club a contemporary vibe for a mountain golf experience that exceeds expectations.
Big Budget: Fairmont Banff Springs Golf Course
Price: $229 to $369; includes cart and practice facilities; Alberta resident discounts available
Course: 6,938 yards, Par 71
Designed by the legendary Stanley Thompson in the 1920s, the Fairmont Banff Springs Golf Course remains the gold standard for mountain golf: views of the historic castle hotel, amazing par-3’s, challenging riverside holes, eye-popping bunkering; the sum of all the parts equals a phenomenal day in a phenomenal setting.