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I will be spending 3-4 weeks in Southeastern Wisconsin and Northeastern Illinois in late May and June. The past few years I have enjoyed playing Thunderhawk in Beach Park, IL. Are there any courses you would recommend at a similar price point in the region?
The Robert Trent Jones Jr.-designed Thunderhawk ($52-$85; 847-968-4295, lcfpd.org) is pretty strong, but if you're craving variety in an area roughly one hour north of Chicago, start with Stonewall Orchard Golf Club ($70-$95; 847-740-4890, stonewallorchard.com) in Grayslake. This 7,074-yard, par-72 Arthur Hills creation, situated almost due west of Waukegan, between Libertyville and McHenry, boasts a formidable 140 slope, owing to water, wetlands and a superb set of par-3s.
Next, check out Shepherd's Crook ($42-$55; 847-872-2080, shepherdscrook.org) in Zion, an open, prairie-style Keith Foster product that sports wild, wavy greens and a wildly low price tag.