Course Name: Wayland Country Club
Designer: Unknown (1920), Unknown (1950s, 9 holes added)
Location: Wayland, Massachusetts
History: Originally a 9 hole course, Wayland Country Club became a fully functional 18 hole course in the early 1950s.
Conditions: 7/10, Wayland prides itself on “private club conditions” and it follows through on it’s promises for the most part. The greens are impeccable, while the different cuts around the green are truly impressive. The bunkers were also in great shape. The only complaint I had was that some of the rough was patchy, but then again I played in November.
Value: 7/10, Wayland is one of the most affordable courses in the area. The Fall/Winter rates are especially impressive with peak weekend tee times only being $38.
Tee Par Yardage Rating Slope
Blue 70/69 6002/5967 68.5 118
White 68 5415 66.3 124
Red 71 4831 68.4 114
Best Score: 86 (Blue Tees), 11/19/2016 with Mike S. and two people we met up with
Front 9 Best: 45 (Blue Tees), 11/19/2016 with Mike S. and two people we met up with
Back 9 Best: 41 (Blue Tees), 11/19/2016 with Mike S. and two people we met up with
Hole Highlights: The 1st hole at Wayland eases you into your round as a short 454 yard par 5. The landing area is wide on this hole, and the only real danger comes in the form of a small, well-protected green. At 418 yards, the straightaway par 4 2nd is the number 1 handicap, mainly due to its length. Although trees line this hole, it is wide open and playing from the other fairways is certainly possibly. At 400 yards, the slight dogleg right 3rd was my favorite par 4 on the course and just a fantastic hole in terms of design. Uphill, trees lined the left side of this narrow fairway but are far more inviting than the right, which is lined by a steep embankment and pond. This tiny undulating green is difficult to hit, and shaved down embankments and well-placed bunkers make getting up-and-down a feat to be proud of. The first of three par 3’s on the par 34 front side, the 4th hole is a pretty fantastic short par 3 that almost certainly was one of the initial 9 holes designed in 1920. This downhill classically designed one-shotter places a premium on hitting the green, as slopes and funkily shaped bunkers make up-and-downs rare. In my opinion, the hallmark of a good short par 3 is one that rewards good shots on the green with reasonable chances at birdie, but punishes missed shots by making par very hard to achieve off the green.
After starting with some wide open holes, Wayland narrows considerably as you reach the 5th hole. This 381 yarder is lined tightly by dense trees on both sides. While there are no bunkers on this hole, the green is tiny and difficult to hit. At 193 yards, the long par 3 6th can best be described as somewhat claustrophobic. Dense woods guard the right, while a line of trees overhangs the left. A large bunker collects any balls hit just a bit right of this difficult green. The 7th is an interesting short par 4 and one that I’m not too sure I liked. At 265 yards, this hole is definitely reachable and a plaque commemorating someone who made two holes-in-ones within a 3-day span in 1961 makes this point abundantly clear. However, there is a lot of danger by this green and hitting long iron off the tee would only give you a pitch in. The 8th hole at Wayland is one of their signature holes at 155 yards. This hole requires a carry over a creek to large green with steep embankments on all four sides. Balls that find this green might leave difficult putts, as this green slopes hard from back to front. The finishing hole on the front side is a strong 412 yard par 4. While you won’t lose a ball on the hole, trees line the entire right side and may interfere a bit with ball on the right side of the fairway.
The opener on the back side is a bit quirky and is all about placement. At only 320 yards, this hole turns sharply left at about 250 yards. You are almost forced to hit wood off this tee because drives under 220 yards will be blocked out by the dogleg. A good drive here only leaves a pitch in, and makes this a very good chance for birdie. Another short par 4, the 334 yard 11th is a straighaway par 4 that plays as the easiest on the course on the scorecard. I recommend hitting long iron off this tee, as there is a valley of rough for about 100 yards before this green. At 503 yards, the 12th hole is only the second par 5 on the course and a good scoring opportunity. The key to this hole is three straight shots; this is sufficient to give you a good birdie chance. The par 4 13th is just a longer version of the 10th. This hole too is a sharp dogleg that requires a driver, but a longer approach shot and large bunker short left of this green make it a bit more difficult.
After a good strong 205 yard par 3, the 15th is a difficult par 4 at 378 yards. This narrow hole played directly into the sun, making finding the ball the most challenging part. This small green is tough to hit, as well-placed bunkers guard both sides. The hardest hole on the back, the 400 yard par 4 16th was a very strong hole. What you see is what you get on this hole, as a narrow fairway is guarded by rough on the left and trees on the right. Two bunkers and woods guard the left side of this large green, which slopes hard back-to-front. At 222 yards, the par 3 17th is the most challenging par 3 on the course. This green is much smaller than it appears from the tee, and deep woods guard the right side. The view from this green (seen below) is fantastic, as you can see for miles of marshland. At 457 yards, the finishing hole is a short par 5 that unfortunately played heavily into the wind when I played it. The drive on this hole must carry about 170 yards of pond to a pretty open fairway lined by trees on the left and OB on the right. The clubhouse is in the backdrop of this tiny green, and while it’s no mansion, it leaves for a nice approach shot.
General Comments: While there are no range or water coolers, Wayland has the feel of a private course. There are free tees in the clubhouse and the pace of play was simply fantastic when I played, as we played in under 4 hours despite the course being packed.
Verdict: Wayland Country Club is obviously a very well-run course. It’s affordable, well-conditioned, and offers better pace of play and design than other nearby courses. I highly recommend this course to those in the Boston area.