An independent, unbiased review of The Links at Bowen Lake in Montcalm County, Michigan using the Michigan Golf Matrix Scoring System.
All public Michigan Golf Courses are considered for review.

Address: 12900 Bradshaw Rd., Gowen, MI 49326

Front 9: Par 35

Back 9: Par 36

Overall Course: (all 18) Par 71

Yardage: Green tees – 4,337; Red tees – 5,174; Gold tees – 5,678; White tees – 6,199: Blue tees – 6,716
Stimp meter: 8.1

Links at Bowen Lake Clubhouse

Clubhouse and Amenities – Rating 7.50

The new clubhouse at The Links of Bowen Lake has a pro shop with a limited selection of apparel and equipment, all at average pricing. The amenities are good and there is adequate parking along with cart paths. The carts are solid and in good shape. Where the clubhouse stands out is with the Bowen Lake Bar & Grill. This has a full bar and a wide menu selection including various handcrafted cocktail drinks and homemade pizza. Additionally, there is an outdoor patio available. Service was outstanding all around which makes your time there enjoyable.

Links at Bowen Lake Front Nine

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 1

Hole 1 – Par 4 – Rating 7.00

Green: 249 yds
Red: 284 yds
Gold: 329 yds
White: 364 yds
Blue: 397 yds

Start your round on a small but level tee box. The rolling fairway runs uphill with medium length rough. There are real sand bunkers near the green and a maintained fringe. The rolling and receptive green is medium in both size and speed.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 2

Hole 2 – Par 3 – Rating 6.34

Green: 68 yds
Red: 147 yds
Gold: 159 yds
White: 174 yds
Blue: 194 yds

Medium size, level tees provide a tee shot over a flowing stream and wetlands to this beautiful par 3. Rough is medium length and the multiple bunkers are real sand. A maintained fringe edges the medium sized green with a rolling, receptive, and medium speed surface.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 3

Hole 3 – Par 4 – Rating 7.00

Green: 229 yds
Red: 286 yds
Gold: 324 yds
White: 379 yds
Blue: 395 yds

Level, medium size tees lead you to a mostly flat fairway that does have some rolling aspects to it. Rough is medium length and bunkers are real sand. The medium size green has a maintained fringe and a surface that is receptive, rolling, and putts at a medium speed. 

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 4

Hole 4 – Par 4 – Rating 7.00

Green: 313 yds
Red: 348 yds
Gold: 385 yds
White: 417 yds
Blue: 458 yds

Small and level tees begin hole 4. The fairway is a combination of flat and rolling with rough of medium length. Real sand bunkers guard the right side of the fairway and the green with a maintained fringe. The green itself is rolling, receptive, and medium in both size and speed.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 5

Hole 5 – Par 5 – Rating 7.00

Green: 400 yds
Red: 460 yds
Gold: 489 yds
White: 530 yds
Blue: 575 yds

The first par 5 you come to has level and small tee boxes. Next, the rolling fairway runs downhill, doglegs slightly left, and is edged by medium length rough. The bunkers are real sand and the fringe is maintained. Green is medium size with a receptive and rolling feel. It runs at a medium speed.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 6

Hole 6 – Par 3 – Rating 6.66

Green: 116 yds
Red: 120 yds
Gold: 138 yds
White: 169 yds
Blue: 184 yds

Hole 6 is a challenging par 3 from level, medium size tees, where hitting the green in regulation is difficult but needed. Tee over a large gully with a flowing stream and wetlands. The green is guarded by real sand bunkers and medium rough. Surrounded by a maintained fringe, medium in size and speed, the greens surface is receptive and rolling.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 7

Hole 7 – Par 4 – Rating 7.00

Green: 247 yds
Red: 342 yds
Gold: 372 yds
White: 400 yds
Blue: 438 yds

Medium size, level tee boxes start this straight-away par 4. The fairway is rolling and runs downhill and back uphill. Rough is medium length, bunkers are real sand and fringe is well-maintained. This green is receptive, rolling, medium in size, and putts at a medium speed.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 8

Hole 8 – Par 4 – Rating 6.58

Green: 272 yds
Red: 315 yds
Gold: 341 yds
White: 380 yds
Blue: 414 yds

This par 4 has level, medium size tee blocks to start. Fairway is rolling and there is a stagnant water hazard to the right. Medium length rough, real sand bunkers, and a maintained fringe surround the medium size green with a receptive, rolling surface running at a medium speed.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 9

Hole 9 – Par 4 – Rating 6.58

Green: 286 yds
Red: 315 yds
Gold: 343 yds
White: 377 yds
Blue: 403 yds

The final hole on the front nine has small but level tees and a combination of a rolling and flat fairway, depending on where you are. Medium length rough and multiple bunkers of real sand are near the green. Fringe is maintained around the medium sized, rolling, receptive green. It putts at a medium speed.

Average Rating Holes 1-9: 6.80

Links at Bowen Lake Back Nine

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 10

Hole 10 – Par 5 – Rating 7.34

Green: 354 yds
Red: 394 yds
Gold: 445 yds
White: 477 yds
Blue: 500 yds

The 2nd par 5 on the course starts the back nine from large and level tees. Fairway runs uphill and slightly doglegs right with a rolling surface and medium length rough. Bunkers are real sand and fringe is maintained. The medium size and speed green is rolling and receptive. 

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 11

Hole 11 – Par 4 – Rating 6.58

Green: 268 yds
Red: 310 yds
Gold: 331 yds
White: 344 yds
Blue: 356 yds

Start on medium size, level tees for this challenging and tight par 4. The fairway runs uphill, then downhill, and doglegs right. Avoid the wetlands pond out there and the medium length rough. Real sand fairway bunkers are to the right and there are multiple bunkers at the green. Fringe is maintained around the medium size green. The surface is receptive, rolling, and runs at a medium speed.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 12

Hole 12 – Par 3 – Rating 8.40

Green: 98 yds
Red: 109 yds
Gold: 122 yds
White: 135 yds
Blue: 156 yds

Your first par 3 on the back nine has small and level tee blocks. Rough is medium length, bunkers are real sand and fringe is maintained. Everything seems to run to the left here, especially the medium size and speed green with a receptive and rolling feel.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 13

Hole 13 – Par 4 – Rating 7.00

Green: 297 yds
Red: 397 yds
Gold: 409 yds
White: 433 yds
Blue: 448 yds

Level, medium-sized tee boxes give you a good look for your tee shot. The rolling fairway runs uphill and has medium length rough and a long string of fairway bunkers to the left that are real sand. Medium length rough runs right up to the maintained fringe. The green is rolling, receptive, and is both medium in speed and size.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 14

Hole 14 – Par 4 – Rating 7.00

Green: 270 yds
Red: 302 yds
Gold: 342 yds
White: 376 yds
Blue: 407 yds

Hole 14 may have level and small tees, but it is a big dogleg left with rolling fairway that runs both uphill and downhill with medium length rough. There are a couple fairway bunkers lurking in the fairway center to grab your ball. A maintained fringe surrounds the medium size green that has a receptive and rolling feel and putts at a medium speed.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 15

Hole 15 – Par 3 – Rating 6.66

Green: 112 yds
Red: 125 yds
Gold: 139 yds
White: 156 yds
Blue: 185 yds

This tight par 3 has small and level tees, so hit it straight. There are some wetlands off to the right and the rough is medium length, guarding the green along with a large real sand bunker. The green has a maintained fringe, a receptive feel, a rolling surface, and is medium in speed and size.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 16

Hole 16 – Par 4 – Rating 7.00

Green: 230 yds
Red: 275 yds
Gold: 300 yds
White: 329 yds
Blue: 383 yds

Level, medium size tees start hole 16. The rolling fairway has medium length rough and the bunkers near the green are real sand. A maintained fringe sides the medium size green. Putt on this medium speed green with a rolling and receptive surface.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 17

Hole 17 – Par 4 – Rating 7.00

Green: 228 yds
Red: 262 yds
Gold: 289 yds
White: 302 yds
Blue: 334 yds

Small, level tees start this tree lined, tight par 4. The rolling fairway has medium length rough with a large, real sand bunker down the left side. The green has a maintained fringe, a rolling and receptive feel, and is medium in size and speed.

Links at Bowen Lake Hole 18

Hole 18 – Par 5 – Rating 6.58

Green: 300 yds
Red: 383 yds
Gold: 421 yds
White: 457 yds
Blue: 489 yds

Tee off over wetlands from level, medium size tees to a rolling fairway that runs uphill and then back downhill. Rough is medium length, bunkers are real sand, and fringe is maintained. This final green is medium size, medium speed, as well as receptive and rolling.

Average Rating Holes 10-18: 7.06

Overall Course Rating: 6.93

SUMMARY:

The Links at Bowen Lake is a public golf course consisting of beautiful wetlands, dramatic sand bunkers, and bentgrass fairways all at 30-acre Bowen Lake. This upscale public golf course caters to golfers of all skill levels, which includes Tee it Forward for shorter hitters. It provides a variety of challenges from tee to green and has great consistency from hole to hole. Combine the course with a wide menu of great bar food at the Bowen Lake Bar & Grill, and it makes for a great day of golf and fun with friends. We consider The Links at Bowen Lake a recommended play. See our video of The Links of Bowen Lake.

The greens rate the highest and most consistent at a score of 8.11.

Pricing: Refer to www.linksatbowenlake.com or call (616) 984-9916 for tee times and pricing

Value Rating: +2.12

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