White Tee Slope Rating - 129 Front 9 - 131 Back 9 - 126
Yellow Tee Slope Rating -129 Front 9 - 130 Back 9 - 127
Red Tee Slope Rating - 133 Front 9 - 133 Back 9 -132
Course Hole By Hole
Hole 1 Quarry - Par 3 White Tee 148 yds Red Tee 122 yds
A straight drive over hilly terrain will land your ball on the slope which should feed it nicely on to the putting surface. However, the prevailing wind from in front and left can easily catch your ball if hit too high and deposit it on the flattish ground to the right from where it is difficult to hold the green with your 2nd shot.
Hole 2 Catteral Corner - Par 4 White Tee 406 yds Par 5 Red Tee 401 yds
From the elevated tee bed you can see all the way to the green, your ideal line is the centre of the fairway between the trees. The beck which runs down the middle of the fairway up to the corner of the green is the challenge for your 2nd shot: do I take it on or not ? An already long Par 4 could become even harder.
Hole 3 Coffin Wood - Par 4 White Tee 354 yds Red Tee 317 yds
From the tee, your line is the corner of the left to right dog-leg. Longer hitters may be tempted to cut the corner, driving over the wall towards the crow's nest but should be aware of the trees and the internal OOB down the right hand side. A second shot of around 150 yards should land you on the green but anything long and to the right may find the water.
Hole 4 Tems Beck - Par 4 White Tee 341 yds Red Tee 334 yds
A straightforward left to right dog-leg offers a good birdie opportunity if played well but presents similar hazards to the previous hole. In order to see your way into the green, keep your drive down the left hand side of the fairway. Do not be long with the 2nd shot as the mound behind the green provides good nestling ground for your ball.
Hole 5 Dry Tarn - Par 4 White Tee 382 yds Red Tee 303 yds
From the elevated tee, it's WYSIWYG all the way to the putting surface. However, the cross beck is waiting to swallow your drive, the grassy mound front right of the green will arrest any run and the dry stone wall at the back could lead to a penalty drop if you get too close.
Hole 6 Scar View - Par 4 White Tee 356 yds Red Tee 349 yds
The landing area from off the tee is very wide but the ideal spot is on top of the hill from where the green is clearly seen. The trees down the right hand side, however, are to be avoided and so the 'safe' drive is along the flank of the hill. This may lead to an awkward 2nd shot, but to leave the elevated, 2 tier green with a 5 is no disgrace.
Hole 7 Huntworth - Par 4 White Tee 354 yds Red Tee 300 yds
With OOB down the left hand side AND on top of the hill to the right, a straight drive on to the short grass is essential, if this hole is not going to spoil your card. The approach shot is over a farm track and stream, which widens into a pool directly in front of the 2 tier green. But a ball landing directly on the putting surface, especially in summer, may well run up to or bounce over the dry stone wall at the back.
Hole 8 Buck Haw Brow - Par 3 White Tee 137 yds Red Tee 110 yds
A par 3 and stroke index 17 & 18 should not deceive you! The uphill green is difficult to hit, especially if the wind is in your face. The bank round the sides and back will help but beware the pin at the front!
Hole 9 Craven Fault - Par 5 White Tee 507 yds Red Tee 427 yds
A straight drive over the marker post should get you off to a good start. The ideal way to find the green is to keep to the left hand side, parallel to the road, but there is a cross beck at the bottom of the slope, 150 yards from the flag, which will make you think about your 2nd shot.
A Brief History
Settle Golf Club's roots go back to the 19th Century. In 1895 Open Champion Harry Vardon designed a 9 hole course on moorland, in the lea of Giggleswick Scar. Members today still play the same moorland course but adjoining meadows have meant that holes have changed over the years. The low lying fairways were once at the bottom of a lake which was drained in the Middle Ages to develop farm land. The original flagged drains still remain and a network of ancient drainage can be seen clearly in dry summers when the bottom field becomes a patchwork of brown stripes filled with green.
Members now reap the benefits of Vardon's vision, and generations of Settle golfers have presented us with the well-manicured fairways of today. Only 30 years ago there were sheep and cattle grazing on the fairways. Square greens were protected by rigid fences. The skill of chipping was an art form, particularly if a fence post and a sleeping beast was to be avoided. Free drops were allowed for a ball embedded in a cowpat, and members were reminded not to lick their ball before cleaning it!
During the war years the future of the course was in the balance. No records show how it survived WW1 but Harold Lambert and a handful of seniors ensured that there was a course for returning soldiers - and their wives after WW2. We are grateful now to these men who ensured that we have a club to be proud of today. Giggleswick School now maintain the course and continue to present superb fairways and greens, which are playable throughout the year.
There is not an opening par 3 in golf better than the glorious first at Settle. 179 yards, usually into a prevailing wind with nothing for short, an ancient quarry to trap anything left and a steep bank on the right. The best of the challenging par 4s is Huntworth - hole 7 - don't be left, or you’re off the course, don't be right, or you won't find your ball, then, make sure you hit a good second to clear the beck which protects the small 2 tiered green. A hole, which is pleasing to the eye but requires precision golf.
Today members are fortunate to be part of the 1895 club. It allows members to play all affiliated 1895 courses in the UK, free of charge. These range from seaside links to courses in the Scottish Highlands.
Some people play golf for fun others enjoy fierce competition, but at Settle all can enjoy the primroses and cowslips in Spring or the peregrines which patrol Giggleswick Scar. Settle is a gem of a golf course. Don't miss it!