Cutters' Ridge

A chance for yet another very out-of-the-ordinary round of 18.


The thinking golfer’s favorite among the marshes of Manistee, Michigan. One of the great things about our Cutters’ Ridge Course is how its personality differs from that of Canthooke Valley, giving you, the golfer, a chance for yet another very out-of-the-ordinary round of 18. The variety will amaze you. While Canthooke lies on sandy soil, Cutters’ Ridge has a more clay-like soil. The fairways as well as the greens at Cutters’ Ridge are paved with bentgrass. While Cutters’ Ridge also has stunning trees, its major distinctions are the marsh and wetlands on this site. Michigan’s outstanding golf architect Jerry Matthews, known for his designs at the Grand Hotel at Mackinac Island, Hunter’s Ridge in Howell and TimberStone in Iron Mountain, laid out this course in 1999. It opened in 2000. At Cutters’ Ridge, Matthews succeeded in blending the beauty of the site into one of the state’s most outstanding courses. This is also a course that accomplished golfers from throughout the state long to play because it has one of the highest slopes in Michigan. Shorter hitters can relax, however, as there are five sets of tee boxes here, with one set sure to match their skills.

Matthews is known for his elevated greens, in particular some where you have to hit up from the fairway without seeing the bottom of the flagstick. Perhaps the most challenging aspect of Cutters’ Ridge is that the wetlands here offer you more chances to test your skill at carrying the ball over water. You’ll really get to know the look and feel of Cutters’ Ridge when you come to the third hole on this course, a slight dogleg left par-4 (408 yards from the back and 282 from the front). You’ll find a mix of different kinds of pines along the fairway here because once upon a time this area was a Christmas tree farm. But the most notable landmark here is the large cherry tree standing at the crook of the dogleg. A little creek also runs through your landing area. Long hitters should play a 3-wood off the tee for safety. At the turn, you’ll be playing across a creek to the elevated green protected by a sand bunker on the front right and a grass bunker front left. No. 4 is a par-5 that plays at 518 yards from the back and 391 from the front. No cutting the corners here to trim yards off your distance. No. 8 is a par-3 (162 yards from the tips and 119 from the front) that gives you a chance to test yourself against the marshlands of the course. You have to carry the marsh to get to the green, but the distance isn’t great. There’s also the danger of bouncing your ball off the back of the green into the marsh. You’ll finish the front with a par-4 (415 yards from the back and 260 from the front) that will remind you a lot of No. 18 on Canthooke. This hole at Cutters’ Ridge has marsh on the left side of a fairway that makes a sweeping dogleg left. The green is elevated. On the back tees, you’ll encounter a three-hole swing 11, 12 and 13, that is almost picture perfect and also demands your strategic thinking. One of the most scenic holes on the course is No. 11, a par-4 that measures 417 yards from the back and 270 from the front. Prepare to be intimidated when you get into the tee box for the first time. From the tips, you will need a carry of 180 yards over marshland; from the women’s tees, it’s only 50. There’s also an elevated green. Recently, we remodeled No. 12 at Cutters’ Ridge, making it a par-3 instead of a par-4, in order to improve the variety of the layout. Although the hole is now 60 yards shorter than before, it remains an exciting test. It now measures 209 yards from the back tees and 115 from the front. No. 13, a par-4 that measures 369 yards from the back and 259 from the front tees, requires a carry over wetlands to the fairway and then another carry from the fairway to the green. It’s also a slight dogleg right. No. 17 is a marsh hole, too, but has a very different feel to it. You make your drive on this par-4 that measures 411 yards from the back and 263 from the front from a very elevated tee box down to a fairway that goes to the right and then to the left around another marsh. No. 18, is a par-4 (402 yards from the back and 271 from the front) that requires a tee shot over a lake to a fairly small landing area. Par is a great score for your final hole.

Distances, ratings and slopes at Cutters' Ridge:

Tee Yards Course Rating / Slope
Black 6,654 73.9 / 149
Blue 6,321 72.0 / 144
White 5,819 69.1 / 130
Gold 5,301 67.6 / 128
Red 4,571 68.8 / 125
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Canthooke Valley

New excitement around every corner at classic Canthooke Valley. Get ready to play fabulous traditional-style golf on our Canthooke Valley Course. This was the first course built at Manistee National and is beloved by everyone from high handicappers to scratch golfers.