The most picturesque golf course at Ford's Colony presents many challenges to golfers of all abilities with water coming into play on 13 holes, a total of 9 doglegs and bunkers guarding every green. There are many elevations changes and the prevailing winds are usually howling, making this course play a lot longer than the 6,621 yards stated on the scorecard.
The best example of Blackheath's beauty can be found when standing on the 12th tee. You are looking straight down to the green and must carry water the entire way. If you turn to your left, you will look down the 16th fairway and an intimidating tee shot that you will have to hit later in your round.
The eighteenth hole, a short par 4 with an island green best describes the challenges found on the Blackheath golf course. Water protects the entire left side of this hole, forcing you to hit an accurate shot to the fairway. Your approach shot is the most intimidating shot at Ford's Colony, because you are hitting to an undulating green that is completely surrounded by water. Par is a great finish on Blackheath.
A favorite to Ford's Colony members, this continuous 18 consists of long and challenging par 3's, fair and forthright par 4's and intimidating par 5's. Blue Heron provides some room for error off of the tee, but makes up for it by having 17 out of 18 greens guarded by bunkers. Many of these holes are carved out of dense wetlands, which provide not only a unique golf course setting, but a home to many different species of birds, fish and other aquatic life.
The fourth hole is a good example of the course's challenges. An accurate tee shot is a must, because the wetlands border the entire left side of this par 5 and there is a fairway bunker on the right. You must play your second shot over a long water hazard, to a narrow landing area that is guarded by bunkers. Your approach shot is to a green that is severely sloped from right to left and back to front. A front right hole location is almost impossible to get to. A par on this hole is a good score any day of the week.
The Marsh Hawk golf course was an instant classic when it opened in 1985. The traditional tree-lined fairways, undulating greens and the best finishing holes around, create a complete journey through the property. A par 72, measuring 6,650 yards from the back tees, Marsh Hawk's greatest defense are narrow fairways and strategically placed bunkers. The real beauty of this golf course lies within the contour of the holes around natural lakes and elevation changes that can delude your depth perception.
Marsh Hawk has played host to the 1998 and 1999 Virginia State Opens, Monday qualifying for the 2005, 2006 and 2007 Nationwide Tour's Henrico County Open and the Monday qualifier for the PGA Tour's Michelob Championship for 12 years straight.