The Gleneagles Golf Course (formerly known as the Equinox Golf Course), now renamed "The Golf Course at Equinox", is a resort course owned by the Equinox Hotel, but open to public play managed by Troon Golf, LLC. Greens fees are in the broad range of $80-120 (lower during the week, high on weekends).
From purely a golfer's perspective, it is the nicest golf course in southern Vermont. The course is generally in great condition from May until late October. As you might expect for a course in Vermont, it is somewhat hilly. In avid golfer vernacular, it is a good track--- good not great in the universe of publicly available, modern courses. Fairways are open and forgiving, no trick holes, not rated as particularly hard (slope 129), minimal water hazards, and the holes are individually unique. My point here is that it is a pleasant and fair course allowing you to enjoy the surrounding environment of "Manchester in the Mountains" while playing golf.
What makes Equinox a must play is the setting--- spectacular Green Mountain scenery! More or less, the golf course is at the base of Mount Equinox. With minor exception, there are few houses along the course--- as such it is a pleasant and private walk or ride around the this beautiful golf course (not like some course where you are walking through a housing development). Bring your camera! Postcard photo ops are there to be had. My favorite photo vantage point is the elevated green on the 13th hole looking back toward the clubhouse and the church spire-- oh yes, and the back drop of Mount Equinox. Even if you are not a golfer, I would highly recommend having lunch or a drink at the club house patio overlooking the 9th hole. Now that I think of it, the patio at the course probably offers the best, easily accessible view of the valley of any place in Manchester--- food and drinks are pretty good too!
A few other Manchester thoughts--- If you have the time include a visit to Hildene. It is about a mile south of the golf course just off Scenic Route 7. It is a wonderful (Robert Todd) Lincoln historic site. The restored house and property (Hildene) is beautiful--- wonderful garden, great views of the valley, etc. I would also suggest a drive up Skyline Drive (my guess is that it is about 6 miles south of the golf course on Route 7). The toll road winds up Mount Equinox and terminates at the very top. Bring a jacket or a sweater-- it is chilly on top even warm summer days. The summit offers great views. Time-wise this is a morning or afternoon adventure. For a short, scenic drive after a round of golf I would suggest driving south along Scenic Route 7 (golf course is just off this road on Union Street) about 1/4 mile, turn left on to River Road, follow River Road for a few miles and enjoy the countryside, turn left on Richville Road, stay on Richville Road for several miles until you come to Union Street and turn left heading back up the hill to the Equinox Hotel--- Union Street bisects the golf course.
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