Posted : July 10, 2014
Our blog is chock full of great ideas for fun things to see and do in York Durham and Headwaters. We are always adding new content and updating old posts, but sometimes you might stumble upon something from our vault. If this article has inspired you to hit the road, be sure to double-check that the featured stops in this post are still welcoming visitors.
Have you ever had the “Hey Honey, can you pick up a few things on the way home from golf” request as you walk out the door to meet up for a round with your buddies? If that sounds like your house, there is a way to fit in a fun time on the links and still come home with a completed shopping list all while keeping the better half from snapping your clubs? Hy-Hope Farm, in the middle of Central Counties can satisfy any golf need and get you home after a quick round with a backseat full of yummy treats for everyone to savour.
Hy-Hope Farm is located south of Uxbridge on the west side of Lakeridge Rd. in the far northern reaches of rural Pickering. Home to a terrific 18 hole executive golf course, the farm is the pride and joy of the Bibb family. Owners Dave and Carol Bibb have been farming this lovely little piece of the Oak Ridges Moraine for decades. With their children Lisa and Stewart, the family has made a living growing fresh fruits and vegetables and raising livestock. This tradition to farming continues to this day as the farm is a working farm and just so happens to be home to a wonderfully fun and surprisingly challenging 18 holes of golf as well. My parents owned a small hobby farm where we raised chickens and grew our own vegetables for freezing. This visit to Hy-Hope brought me back a few decades to my own childhood roots.
Your golf visit to Hy-Hope Farm isn’t just another round of golf; you become a guest of the Bibb family when you arrive. This most welcoming family greets guests with appreciation and smiles. Looking around the farm you see fields filled with orchards, gardens, and vines. The family not only grows delicious fresh eats, but also staffs a country store on-site to tempt your taste buds. This farmer’s market is filled with farm fresh produce, naturally raised meats, shelves of locally made preserves, handmade crafts, beautiful hanging baskets of flowers and delectable home-made baked goods like pies, tarts and breads all made with fresh ingredients by Carol, Lisa and Dave. A terrace BBQ and live entertainment on weekends and holidays gives the store a family friendly atmosphere.
It was the golf course that drew me to Hy-Hope and I was excited to get a chance to play with son Stewart Bibb, course superintendent. Having a conversation while playing the first few holes was an enlightening experience highlighting the beginnings and growth of the facility. Asked about the origins of the course, Bibb told of watching a TV show with his dad nearly 25 years ago that highlighted a farmer in Western Canada that transformed part of his sheep farm into a home-made golf course. They found inspiration and Dave and Stewart began the journey that continues to this day. Playing 3075 yards from the tips, the par 33 layout features six par 4 holes all on the front nine. The course opens next to the country store and on the day I played, we were serenaded by the live music that is customary on weekends and holidays. Not often do you have to focus on your opening tee shot with Elvis and Willie Nelson in your ear.
Bibb gave a few cautionary pieces of advice as we were hitting our opening long irons into the face of a 2 club wind. “This is not an easy golf course,” he said explaining the overview of the routing. This wonderfully conditioned course is not a typical golf experience. The layout features two very different sets of tee decks and true rolling greens. Another of Bibb’s wisdoms came after looking down the first fairway and seeing a row of high trees in the middle. “Oh Yah and here you have to hit over stuff,” he said with a smile and a chuckle.”
The course’s first nine is home to the newest holes on the routing, with most traversing the flatter areas of the farm. A drive through a cherry orchard on Hole 2 gives you a taste of things to come, so to speak. Holes 4-6 have the newest greens, gigantic in comparison to some later in the round. Surrounded by apple trees and grape vines, be careful not to pull hook a shot and take out one of the farm hands picking crops. The older holes get routed over very steep terrain, with many holes playing across deep gullies and to high perched greens. Many of the older holes have greens fitting to the size of the pie plates used by Lisa and Carol in making the delectable deserts. Greens in regulations should be the farthest thing from your mind when playing Hy-Hope Farm, unless your wedge game is tour worthy.
This little trip back to a simpler time is far more than a routine round of golf. The next time you find yourself heading toward Durham Region, or if you are looking for a family outing that brings great fun on the course and teases your nose and taste buds all at the same time, make Hy-Hope Farm a place for you and yours to connect with the Bibb family.
5450 Lakeridge Rd.,
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