Course Architects: Lindsay Bruce Ervin and Steve Klein
Year Opened: 1999
Location: Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
Slope: 140. Rating: 73.9
Par: 72
Yardage: 7,031
Hole-by-Hole: 1 - Par 4 394 Yds    10 - Par 4 395 Yds
                      2 - Par 4 395 Yds    11 - Par 4 396 Yds
                      3 - Par 3 187 Yds    12 - Par 3 163 Yds
                      4 - Par 5 510 Yds    13 - Par 4 440 Yds
                      5 - Par 4 371 Yds    14 - Par 5 575 Yds
                      6 - Par 3 183 Yds    15 - Par 3 233 Yds
                      7 - Par 5 600 Yds    16 - Par 4 490 Yds
                      8 - Par 4 323 Yds    17 - Par 4 441 Yds
                      9 - Par 4 396 Yds    18 - Par 5 539 Yds
                      Par 36  3,359 Yds     Par 36  3,672 Yds

Key Events Held: The Gettysburg Championship (Futures Tour) - (2006-07).

Awards Won: Rated 4 stars by Golf Digest - Best Places to Play (2005-06),
            Ranked #9 by Golfweek - America's Best State by State Public-
            access courses (Pennsylvania, 2006).


HISTORY:  Located just across the Maryland-Pennsylvania border on, you guessed
it, Mason Dixon Road, The Links at Gettysburg congers up memories of the Civil
War  and The  Battle of Gettysburg. In  fact, you'll need your full arsenal to
attack this breathtaking layout.

Originally  laid  out by Lindsay Ervin  and finished by land developer Stephen
Klein,  the cousin of  the owner, Rick Klein. A member of the American Society
of  Golf Course  Architects since  1979,  Ervin has  had his  hand in  several
outstanding  projects in  the  Mid-Atlantic region,  including  Hog Neck  Golf
Course and Queenstown Harbor Golf Links in Maryland.

Opened  in  1999, The Links at  Gettysburg received a four-star rating in just
three years in Golf Digest's Places to Play and is ranked in the top-10 in the
state of Pennsylvania for public-access courses by Golfweek.

Just  recently, the  course  played  host to  the  Duramed  Futures Tour,  the
developmental  circuit for the LPGA Tour. Song-Hee Kim needed a playoff on the
final  day, but she  was able to overcome Jin Young Pak and win The Gettysburg
Championship  in 2006.  Kim closed with a four-under 68 to get to 10-under-par
206. Pak, who led by two after two rounds, managed a one-under 71 in the final
round  to join  Kim in the playoff,  but lost on the second extra hole. Kristy
McPherson,  who finished  alone in  third, set  the tournament  record 18-hole
score of 64 in the second round.

REVIEW:  The course  opens with a sharp, dogleg left, downhill par four. Under
400  yards in  length, the first requires  just a fairway metal off the tee to
set  up  a wedge to the  green. The landing area  is devoid of sand and fairly
tight, with trees and a steep slope left, so bail out right to avoid disaster.
Your  approach to  the green  drops  off severely  from the  fairway, so  club
yourself  appropriately.  The large,  sloping putting surface  is fronted by a
creek  bed and a  rock wall with one trap deep and one, short and left. Just a
precursor of some of the striking holes at Gettysburg.

In  contrast, the second is an uphill, dogleg-right par four, roughly the same
yardage  as the opener. The fairway is quite ample, so let it rip with the big
stick  for a short-iron to the green. The second shot plays across a ravine to
a  green fronted  by a  deep  bunker. The  putting  surface is  very wide  and
undulating.  Make sure  you take enough club  to get home in two, as the green
sits above the fairway.

Easily  one of the signature holes at the Links at Gettysburg, the third is an
outstanding,  downhill par three featuring a spectacular red rock cliff behind
the  green.  A mid-  to long-iron is  required to negotiate  the creek bed and
reach  the very wide putting surface. Sand protects the entire rear portion of
the  putting surface,  prior to reaching the rock wall. The green is extremely
undulating,  so  even  if your  successful  off  the  tee,  a two-putt  is  no

The  par-five fourth is most definitely a birdie hole. Just 510 yards from the
tips,  the hole  plays downhill as it  bends to the left. A sweeping draw down
the  left side will  set up a mid- to long-iron to an inviting green. The long
putting  surface features a ridge down the middle, as putts slope from left to
right.  Long is jail,  as it drops 25 feet over the green. Anything worse than
par  and you'll lose  a couple to the field. This hole is rated as the easiest
on the front side.

Not much to the straightaway, par-four fifth. The lone obstacle off the tee is
a  fairway trap, 250 yards out down the right side. Avoid that and you're home
free  for a  realistic shot at birdie. The green features two massive bunkers,
one  on each side  and a long putting surface, sloping to the front and to the
back. Staying below the hole should give you a shot at a three.

A  fairly plain par  three, the sixth is just a mid-iron in length with a pair
of  traps towards  the rear  of the  green.  The defense  of the  hole is  the
massive,  7,400  square foot green that  slopes from back to front. Any mishit
off the tee could result in a three-putt.

Without a doubt, the seventh is one of the hardest holes on the course and not
because  of the  length. The longest hole  on the course at 600 yards from the
gold  tees, this par five features a very difficult tee shot. From an elevated
tee,  the  view is  spectacular, but the  shot ahead is  scary. The hole bends
towards  the  right with water on  both sides of  the sliver of fairway. A big
blast  down the right should clear the hazard, however any type of mishit will
be  wet. The fairway  continues its narrow ride to the green, with mounding on
both sides and a 30-yard trap on the right side of the approach area. A common
mistake is not taking enough club for your third shot to the slightly elevated
putting  surface.  One trap,  short and right  guards the slick, back-to-front
green. Par is a great score!

Another  sensational hole, the par-four eighth is a gem with multiple options.
Just 323 yards from the tips, the dogleg left features a 20-foot high red rock
wall behind the fairway and green and wetlands down the left side and in front
of  the tee.  Option one. Long-iron or  hybrid to the right fairway, leaving a
wedge  to the green. Option two. Five-metal short of the fairway bunkers, with
just a pitch to the putting surface for birdie. Finally, a big, high draw with
the  driver as you go for the green in an effort for a routine three. Who said
short couldn't be fun.

The closing hole on the outward nine is a straightaway, solid uphill par four.
The multi-tiered tee box overlooks a ravine fronting the fairway that rises to
the green. A pair of fairway traps down the right side are 45 yards in length,
while  a stand  of trees guard the  left. The fairway is undulating and rarely
features  a  level lie as you  try to gauge  your approach shot. Take an extra
club  as you climb  to the fairly large putting green. The surface slopes from
back  to  front with bunkers  on either  side and a  grass hollow in the rear.
Birdies can be made if you stay below the hole.

Following a brief cart ride, the back is a tale of two different nines, as the
final holes feature plenty of water. The 10th is a simple dogleg-left par four
of  395  yards in length.  A fairly wide  fairway should accommodate even some
offline  hits, however  any ball missing the landing area will result in bogey
or  worse.  Mounds and  deep rough  guard both  sides of  the fairway and four
distinct bunkers cover the right side. A successful tee shot will leave just a
wedge  to a downhill green with two large traps left and one deep. The putting
surface  slopes hard  from left to right  and back to front, so stay below the
hole at all costs.

Although  rated  one of the  easier holes on the  course, the 11th is anything
but.  Similar in length to four other holes on the course, this par four plays
downhill  and doglegs  to the right. Trees  and out of bounds guard the entire
right  side through  the green, while the left side features mounding and tall
fescue.  What makes this  hole difficult is the water that lurks down the left
side  by the landing area. A fade down the right will set up a short-iron to a
well-guarded  green with sand left and right. A word of caution, any shot long
will be tree bound, as the green drops off severely.

As  close to  an island green as  you're going to get in central Pennsylvania,
the  12th is a challenging par three with water surrounding the entire putting
surface.  The green is  quite wide and deep with a ridge running in the center
from  left to  right. A pair of bunkers  in the rear will keep you honest, but
with a short- to mid-iron in hand, par should be no problem.

Another  bear  of a  hole, the 13th  is one  of the longest  par four's on the
course,  stretching 440 yards from the tips with a pair of lakes down the left
and  trees  and out-of-bounds on  the right. Angling  from right to left, this
hole  is  two-fold, requiring an  accurate and long tee  shot to a very narrow
fairway  and  a mid- to long-iron  to a very  difficult green. The lake by the
green  creeps ever so close to the putting surface, making club selection from
the  fairway crucial.  The green  is very  undulating and  large, making  two-
putting a chore.

The  only  difference between 13  and 14  is the length,  as the latter is 135
yards  longer and  plays as a par  five. Once again, two bodies of water guard
the  left side,  while trees and OB  flank the right. The fairway is extremely
tight  as the hole  bends to the left. Your approach shot to the layup area is
even tighter with water left, a trap on each side and the cart path protruding
on  the right. If successful, just a wedge will remain to an accessible green,
so birdie is a definite possibility.

Usually par three's are ranked as the easiest on the course, well not the 15th
at  The Links. This monster is a whopping 233 yards from the back markers, 200
of  which is  all carry over a lake.  The water runs down the left side of the
green  to add insult  to injury. The putting surface is very long and when the
wind  is  up, this  could be one  of the  hardest targets to  hit, even with a
cannon. Making par here could be an amazing feat.

It  doesn't get any  easier as you reach the 16th, the longest par four on the
course  at 490 yards.  Water down the left is the first obstacle. Then a drive
of  over  220 yards  is needed  just to reach  the fairway.  No bunkers in the
fairway,  but mounding  right and thick rough lines the landing area. A hybrid
or  long-iron remains to a slightly elevated putting surface, fronted by a red
rock  bed. Two bunkers guard the entrance to the green and two stand deep. The
surface  flows  sharply from back to  front with a  ridge on the left. This is
certainly not a birdie hole, unless you're playing from the forward tees.

Bending  to  the right, the sleek,  par-four 17th is another solid hole. Water
again  reigns supreme, with 200 yards of carry over a lake and another body of
water  down the  entire left  side of  the fairway.  Bailing out  right is  no
bargain  either, as a deep fairway bunker guards the corner of the dogleg, not
to mention thick brush and fescue outside the cart path through the green. The
elevated  putting  surface is guarded by  a double-trap in front and the green
itself is very undulating, especially deep.

The  closing  hole is a  stellar, dogleg-right par  five, featuring all of the
attributes  that  you witnessed throughout your  round at The Links. Start out
with  water down the left side off the tee and on both sides of the fairway at
the  landing area for  your approach. Two traps guard the corner of the dogleg
from  the tee, not  to mention out of bounds (poorly marked past the traps) on
the  right. More water encompasses the rear of the green like a horseshoe with
a  beautiful  and dramatic, 30-foot red-rock  wall as a sensational back drop.
What a great finish!

FINAL WORD: The Links at Gettysburg is one of the prettiest and scenic courses
in  the region.  Offering sensational views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, slick
undulating  greens and plenty  of water (14 holes have the wet stuff). The red
rock  canyons  and creek beds are  beautiful, especially the third, eighth and

The  course features  five sets of tees.  In fact, the tee markers are replica
copies  of Civil  War cannons.  Yardages vary  from 4,861  to just  over 7,000
yards, so it's fair for all levels of play.

A  few  things do bother me  about The Links  at Gettysburg. First of all, the
yardage  guide which  is  bolted to  the cart  is  useless. For  example...the
seventh hole yardages are not enough to make a decisive club selection off the
tee. In addition, there are no green depths in the guide.

Secondly,  make  sure you  bring your  own drinks.  Does $3  for a Gatorade or
similar  product sound  fair? I think not, especially when you're shelling out
$80 for a round of golf.

Finally,  the course  conditions.  The website  raves  about their  immaculate
conditioning, however when played in the middle of August prior to the Futures
Tour  event, the surroundings were less than ideal. The greens were spotty and
the  tee boxes  were rough. Even some  of the hazards were overgrown, like the
par-four eighth.

Overall,  The  Links at  Gettysburg is a  terrific, well-conceived layout with
just  a few  average holes. From the Baltimore and Washington-area it's just a
mere  hour  away, but from  Philadelphia, getting there  is not the easiest of
chores,  but it's  worth the ride. The  question is, would I drive another two
hours  and  play it again?  Yes, but  I would call  first to check on aeration
schedules and course conditions.