Bear Trace at Cumberland Mountain Golf Course is situated in the heart of Tennessee’s scenic Cumberland Plateau and is one of the most sought-after sites among the five Jack Nicklaus designed Bear Trace courses in Tennessee.
Located just outside of Crosville, Tennessee (about an hour west of Knoxville) this course is a MUST PLAY and well worth the drive. The staff is exceptional, everyone is friendly and willing to share local knowledge about the course with you. The facilities have a rustic feel but everything was top notch including the well stocked golf shop.
The 6,900-yard (gold tees), par 72 layout features a design that capitalizes on elevation changes as well as natural features, such as flowing brooks and clustered, mature pines. The signature 7th hole, a 393-yard, par 4, incorporates another of the region’s natural resources, layered flagstone, along the front of the green.
The day I played, weather was not my friend, it was a cold, dreary day with rain on the horizon, but I didn’t let the weather dampen my spirts. Had I visited a couple of weeks earlier, I would have been treated to what must have been a spectacular exhibition of fall leaves. My plan is to return in late October or early November on a bright sunny day and I think I will be in for an incredible day of beauty and hopefully some good golf as well. If the golf isn’t good, it won’t be the course’s fault.
“I think visitors to The Bear Trace will be pleasantly surprised when they find unique golfing experiences in places where the entire family can participate in or enjoy a variety of sports — and they can enjoy these sports together.” – Jack Nicklaus
What I Remember the Most About Playing at Bear Trace
Just a sampling of some of the holes that made the biggest impression on me. All yardages are from the Blue Tees
Number 1 (Par 4, 362 yards) – Relax While You Can
A great starting hole, nothing too challenging to get you warmed up for your round. But like I said, relax and enjoy it while you can because they all won’t be this easy.
Number 7 (Par 4, 371 yards) – The Signature Hole
A straight drive will leave you with an approach shot that forces you to carry a small stream to an elevated green surrounded by a layered flagstone rock wall. It’s no wonder why this is the signature hole!
Number 10 (Par 4, 421 yards) – The Bell
A blind tee shot over the hill will get you to the bottom, where your approach shot is up hill, to a green framed by magnificent trees. Don’t forget to ring the bell after your approach shot, so golfers on the tee will know that it is safe to play.
Number 11 (Par 5, 490 yards) – View from the Top
This par 5 could be the signature hole. An elevated tee shot down the right side will give you your best shot of reaching in two, but smart golf says to play it safe and reach the green in regulation, and hope for two putts to make par.
Number 18 (Par 4, 433 yards) – Coming Home
This finishing hole will put you to the test. It doesn’t look that difficult but looks can be deceiving. This hole will take all you’ve got left to finish.
Final Thoughts about Bear Trace at Cumberland Mountain
Beautifully maintained, memorable holes, very challenging. You’ll use every club in your bag and have to think your way around this course where position is everything. Typical Nicklaus layout with lots of mounding, contoured fairways and tiered greens. I only wish it was closer, because I would play it every day if I could!
Designer: Jack Nicklaus
Status: Open For Play (1998)
Location: 407 Wild Plum Lane Crossville, TN
Telephone: (888) 800-2327
The Bear Trace at Cumberland Mountain Online: http://www.tngolftrail.net