By Katie Bowles
Spring is finally here–what better way to enjoy the warm weather than by spending some time on the fairway? These three NoVA golf courses are near enough to make it back to work after a morning tee time (but we won’t judge if you spend the whole day). Before heading out on the links, up your game with our pro tips from Bryan Zell, Director of Instruction at Westfields Golf Club.
This Clifton course was built by former Masters champion Fred Couples, but you don’t have to be on the PGA tour to enjoy its facilities–Westfields is a public course. It has won numerous awards, including being listed a Four Star “Best Places to Play” golf course by Golf Digest, and includes a pro shop, multiple dining options, driving range and fitting studio. Those who really enjoy Westfields have the option of becoming a member, which comes with benefits like preferred tee times, discounted greens fees and use of a practice facility. Want to relax while your partner or friends play a round? Westfields recently renovated clubhouse features Mulligans, an indoor/outdoor dining area that includes a flatscreen television so you don’t miss any sporting events while on the greens.
Westfields Golf Club
13940 Balmoral Greens Ave., Clifton
See rate schedule here.
Located in Fairfax Station, Burke Lake Golf Course is a public course open year round (under the Fairfax County Park Authority). This 18-hole course offers a clubhouse with food service, pro shop, club rentals and a driving range. The golf course is located on nearby Burke Lake, which also features frisbee golf and mini-golf for those just looking to enjoy the scenery without playing a serious game. Young golfers can enjoy Burke Lake as well: the course also offers a “Junior Golf Program” for kids ages eight to 17. This program includes greens discounts, free clinics and a free rule book, among other amenities. Grab the kids or come solo for an enjoyable game at Burke Lake Golf Course.
Burke Lake Golf Course
7315 Ox Road, Fairfax Station
See rates here.
Lorton’s Pohick Bay Golf Course is another nearby choice if you’re looking for luxurious links. The course was designed by George W. Cobb, who was also design consultant for (most notably) Augusta National Golf Club, where the Masters tournament is held each year. Pohick Bay has a driving range, practice facilities, snack bar and golf shop and also offers membership options without a yearly fee. The greens are located on the Mason Neck peninsula in Lorton. Got kids? Bring them along and let them check out nearby Mason Neck State Park while you golf.
Pohick Bay Golf Course
10301 Gunston Road, Lorton
See rates here.
Bryan Zell, Director of Instruction at Westfields Golf Club, on improving your short game:
“An important step to your short game pre-shot routine is visualizing what you want the ball to do for it to go in the hole. As the famous saying goes, ‘What your mind perceives, your body can achieve.’ Start your process by imagining how the flight of the ball would travel if you were trying to make the shot by tossing a ball underhanded. In situations where you need a soft landing with less roll, the toss would be higher and therefore the club should be more lofted. When you need to play less carry and more roll, the toss would be lower and the club should have less loft. Following that process will paint the picture of the shot in your mind and will help you determine the correct trajectory, landing spot and proper club selection.”