Review of The Hills of Lakeway Live Oak Course – Lakeway Texas
The Hills of Lakeway is home to two very good golf courses (Live Oak and Yaupon) both of which are private but available for play if you stay at Lakeway Resort & Spa. Of the two courses, Live Oak is more challenging for lower handicap golfers thanks to tight tree-lined fairways and small push up greens and easier than Yaupon for higher handicap golfers. Yaupon has some fantastic holes and more dramatic elevation changes – to learn more, read Texas Outside's review of Yaupon.
Live Oak was the first Lakeway course and was constructed in 1967 and is currently owned and managed by Club Corp. Live Oak is a fun and challenging course to play and it demands very good course management and club selection to score well. The course is lined with houses of all shapes and sizes and lots of magnificent live oak trees which add both beauty and problems. Most of the holes are tight with thick roughs and if you tend to spray the ball you're going to have a long day. There are several ups and downs and lots of dog legs where you can't see the pin from the tee box – which makes it a little more challenging the first time you play the course.
Those of us who hate bunkers and always seem to find the sand, will love this course – it only has 3 traps and they are all on the 18th hole and easy to avoid. However, water comes into play on 7 holes, a couple of which are challenging and may require a layup.
We liked Live Oak's back nine much more than the front nine which is fairly traditional and not as much fun as the back nine which has some great holes and more character, water, and elevation changes. Some of the notable holes on Lakeway Country Club's Live Oak course include:
- #1 gives you a good sense of what you're up against on the other 17 holes – it's a 360-yard dog right with a great risk-reward shot off the tee if you think you can carry the trees and manage the right to left sloping fairway
- #3, a 207-yard par 3, is commonly referred to as "Jaws" because it's all carry from an elevated tee box over a deep ravine that gobbles up any shot that falls short of the green
- #9 is a fun 459-yard par 4 with an elevated back tee box, a carry over water, and then uphill to a tough two-tier green
- the back has a little bit of everything – a fun up and down on the rolling hills of #10, a good risk-reward shot off the tee on #11, and #14 includes an elevated tee shot over a natural area, then a dog left across water, followed by an uphill shot to the green
- #18 will make you want to play Live Oak again – an elevated tee shot that needs to avoid the lake on the right and a big uphill shot past the only three bunkers to a tough green complex
Both times that we've played Lakeway Country Club's Live Oak Course, the fairways and rough have been in good condition. The fairways are a tad tight and tree-lined or lined by homes on one or both sides and if you spray the ball you could be in the back yard or out of bounds. The rough is typically cut thick and challenging. If you miss the fairway and don't go out of bounds, you'll typically have an easy chip shot back to the fairway.
The greens at Live Oak were also in very good condition and they range from small to medium size and a variety of shapes. Most are raised and the fringe is small. They were running true and at a great speed of around a 9 to 10. All have some subtle breaks thanks to slope and undulation.
Bottom line – a very good quality course and Lakeway Resort has an excellent stay and play package. Read Texas Outside's Review of Lakeway Resort to learn more about why we like this resort.
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Service is very good. The pro shop has all of the basics and the practice facilities are adequate. The grill and restaurant serve a variety of food. The practice facilities are adequate.
Trey comped our round, sent review to firstname.lastname@example.org