Golf Course Review: Hawks View Como Crossings

The night before Labor Day, my friend Eric and I decided we wanted to get a round in early on Monday morning. The problem was that most clubhouses were already closed, and those that weren’t either had minimal availability or else higher rates for the holiday weekend.
So, as I do often, I went online to GolfNow to start looking for available tee times and good deals. Eric had to get back to Chicago in the late afternoon, and was not willing to travel more than an hour to play. I took advantage of this by checking out the Lake Geneva area, and came across a course I have wanted to play for years: Hawks View’s Como Crossings.
My friend, Mike, played Hawks View a couple weekends ago for a bachelor party, and reported back that the course was awesome. His one complaint is the same one complaint that I have: It would be nice to have a set of tees between the extremely long blacks (7,074 yards) and the medium-range blues (6,595 yards). 7,000 yards is just too long for me, and for most double-digit handicappers. At 6,210, the white tees were out of the question.
That being said, the 6,595 for the blue tees was comfortable while still challenging. The par fives were a little on the short side: 512 for the seventh, 492 on the ninth, a meaty 550 on the tenth, and 501 on the fourteenth. The par fours are very interesting, but I found myself hitting driver-wedge on almost all of them. The longest of the par fours is the 415-yard thirteenth, which is one of just two par fours over 400 yards.
The course is pretty open off the tees. Errant tee shots will find sand and water, but very infrequently woods. I personally love that!
The clubhouse is very nice, with a huge pro shop, really nice bar and grill area, and very classy wood-laden restrooms/locker rooms. The driving range was alright – you can hit for miles, but the target greens are built in to a hillside that raises extremely high, making it very difficult to gauge distance. The grass on the range is more than adequate, though, and I was happy about that.
A quick stop at the practice green (pretty quick – probably around a nine on the stimp meter) precluded our journey to the first hole tee boxes, and I wish I would have spent a little more time on it – it probably could have helped me avoid at least one of my six three-putts of the day.
We made our drive to the first hole tee boxes, which gave us our first view of the drastic difference in yardage between the black and blue tees. The blacks played over a vast wide prairie area, while the blues were on the other side and featured a straight shot down the fairway. The tee shot is a bit deceiving: The left side is a little more open than it looks, but the fairway falls off to rough and then to fescue. I hit a bomb on down the left side on this hole, which was swallowed up by the fescue and would prove to be my only lost ball of the day.
Hole 1: Par 4 (441/366/350/321/309)
The on-cart GPS tells you all you will need to know off the tee on the second hole. Water is 230 yards away, so take less than driver and try to cut it. A huge wooden statue of a hawk guards the left side of the fairway, and gives a good aiming point off the tee. Most of the right side is blind, but the fairway juts that direction slightly with a hillside that will usher slightly right balls back down toward the short grass. The hole finishes over a small creek that is surrounded by rough.
Hole 2: Par 4 (365/355/331/319/280)
Hole 2: Par 4 (365/355/331/319/280)
The third hole is the first of two extraordinarily elevated par threes at Como Crossings. At 183 yards, this tee shot is considerably longer than the other elevated par three seventeenth. With a wide green, make sure to measure the right distance and wail away. Then, if possible, try to get on the relevant side of the green. The pin was right for our round, and I hit the left side to set up a perfect three-putt opportunity from about 60 feet.
Hole 3: Par 3 (215/183/152/119/92)
Hole 3: Par 3 (215/183/152/119/92)
The fourth is a nice downhill par four that measures 386 yards from the blue tees. The fairway is as tree-lined as any at Hawks View, but the driving area is wide and very hittable. A good drive will receive a charitable downhill run, and the green is widely unprotected from the front, left and right.
Hole 4: Par 4 (415/386/361/336/280)
Behind the fourth hole green is the black tee box for the fifth hole. The blacks tee off over a sizable prairie area, while the blue, white and gold tees are 82 yards shorter and have a much easier, more direct tee shot. This small green is protected by a large sand trap on the left side, and is elevated to add to its difficulty.
Hole 5: Par 4 (460/378/365/352/316)
The sixth hole is a gorgeous par three over water. The front and left side are embanked with a stone barrier, while the right side is wide open for bailout. This huge green is steeply sloped toward the water.
Hole 6: Par 3 (194/180/165/150/123)
Hole 6: Par 3 (194/180/165/150/123)
Seven is one of my favorite holes at Como Crossings, and was certainly one of Eric’s after he two-hopped a 30-yard bunker shot straight in to the cup for eagle. The tee shot can be played straight toward the central sand trap, which is about 270 yards from the blue tees. The right side can also be used, but can find some awkward lies behind trees and on a number of mounds off the fairway. The second shot can be played considerably right to stay away from the water, while the approach has to carry a plethora of sand traps to a risen green. The left side of the green features another fairway that can be used long of the fairway bunkers.
Hole 7: Par 5 (527/512/486/441/382)
The eighth is one of the more elementary holes at Como Crossings, with a straight-away layout that measures 408 yards from the blue tees. Carry the right side sand trap for an ideal approach in.
Hole 8: Par 4 (433/408/394/361/324)
Nine is the second of Hawks View’s four par fives. At 492 yards, it is also the shortest. Woods lines the left side, and should be avoided at all costs. The traps short-left and long-right are the key hazards to avoid, but the front-right hole location left a sliding putt that proved difficult to hole.
Following the short par five ninth is the course’s longest par five, and my favorite hole at Como Crossings. The tenth sets up similarly to the eighteenth hole at one of my favorite Wisconsin courses, The Oaks. The fairway sets up laterally with hundreds of yards to short grass to hit from the tees. The farther left you drive, the shorter the drive will be. If the tee shot is long and left, there will be a chance to hit the green in two, but it will likely be 200 yards or more. If the middle or right side of the fairway is hit off the tee, the only option will be to lay up before Como Creek. A beautiful wooden bridge crosses the creek and leads to a short layup area that fronts an elevated green. This is an awesome par five that for almost all players will require three shots to hit.
Hole 10: Par 5 (600/550/539/515/507)
Hole 10: Par 5 (600/550/539/515/507)
Hole 10: Par 5 (600/550/539/515/507)
Hole 10: Par 5 (600/550/539/515/507)
Eleven is the longest of the par threes at Hawks View, at 205 yards from the blue tees. The green is sloped heavily from the right to the left, so the right side is the best target area. Don’t overhit the green right, though, or else find a tough downhill approach that will be very difficult to hold.
Hole 11: Par 3 (213/205/182/159/114)
A shorter par four, the twelfth green is best approached from the right side, but tee shots must carry a large fairway bunker to be safe. The left side can be used, but water is about 260 yards away, and the approach will likely have to carry it to hit the green safely.
Hole 12: Par 4 (395/387/351/315/283)
Finishing up twelve, the thirteen runs along the opposite side of the same pond and requires a tee shot that stays considerably right for the best approach. The green is quite highly risen, and a back pin location makes for a very challenging two-putt situation.
Hole 13: Par 4 (424/415/375/342/303)
Fourteen is one of the holes shown on Como Crossing’s website. A picturesque garden area and waterfall resides on the left side of the driving area, and actually has a sign that reads ‘Free drop from the garden.” This is awfully generous, for sure, but was used by my friend to keep par in play. The right side has a few more hazards to watch out for, including large trees and a small pond around the tee boxes of the previous hole. This par five finishes over a bevy of huge sand traps, and a green that is split by a substantial wall that separates the left from the right side.
Hole 14: Par 5 (509/501/474/440/413)
Hole 14: Par 5 (509/501/474/440/413)
The tee shot on fifteen looks intimidating from the scorecard, but the left side water hazard is short and can be carried with a drive over 200 yards and some change. The right side is accessible, too, but can leave a tricky stance for the approach shot that follows.
Hole 15: Par 4 (410/382/372/345/330)
Sixeen is a short par four that actually reminded me of several holes from University Ridge. With woods on both sides of the fairway, a straight tee shot is important. At just 345 yards from the blue tees, hit whatever club you hit straight and focus on locating the tee shot for the best possible uphill approach.
Hole 16: Par 4 (354/345/312/280/239)
Leaving the green on sixteen gives a beautiful view of the skyward tee boxes of seventeen. Located atop the old Mt. Fuji Ski Hill, the back tee boxes afford a view of much of the surrounding Delavan and Lake Geneva area, and 87 feet down to the putting surface of this gorgeous par three. At 153 yards, the wind was swirling, and club selection proved to be quite difficult. My eight iron looked to be on the back of the green, but showed up in the back-side sand trap, making for a tough out that would finally be made for bogey.
Hole 17: Par 3 (169/153/136/120/91)
Hole 17: Par 3 (169/153/136/120/91)
Eighteen proved to be the easiest hole of the day for both of us. A downhill drive to a liberally wide fairway was simple enough to hit, and was best played to the right side. This right side kept the front, back and left greenside bunkers out of the equation on a shallow green with a right-side pin. Eric tapped in for birdie on this hole, while I had a simple enough par.
Hole 18: Par 4 (424/397/381/337/313)
We both agreed that Como Crossings was the perfect place to get in a round on Labor Day weekend. At $70 on GolfNow, the cost was a little steep, but the course experience turned out to be well worth it.
Lake Geneva provides an ideal location for attracting golfers from both the Milwaukee and Chicago areas, which is nice for golf buddies like Eric (from Chicago) and me (Milwaukee area). Just under an hour from Menomonee Falls, the drive was merited by a great course on a nearly perfect, albeit muggy, September day.
In an area that has a number of phenomenal golf courses (three at Geneva National, two at Grand Geneva, and Abbey Springs), Hawks View’s Como Crossings is one of my three favorite tracks in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin.
Course Wrap-Up:
Location: Lake Geneva, WI
Yardage: Black-7074, Blue-6595, White-6210, Gold-5701, Red-5115
Slope/Rating: Black-133/73.1, Blue-128/71.0, White-124/69.2, Gold-118/66.9, Red-115/69.3
Par: 72
Weekend Rates (with cart): $85

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