It would be easy to characterise Halifax in one hole – a quite preposterous par 3 with a vertical drop from tee to green of some 62 feet.
And while that 17th is fabulous fun, and what people largely remember most from an expedition to Ogden, it would also be rather dismissive of what is great golf over arduous terrain.
Nothing about Halifax comes easy, and nor should it. You arrive at the club, perched underneath the soaring Pennines, through a narrow road and you’d better take a good look at that high ground around you because you’re going to be climbing it.
You’ll feel like you require oxygen at several points as you traverse the layout and if you arrive on an inclement day, well, watch out. The weather can batter you just as much as the inclines.
But for the adventurous, this should feel like a challenge to be savoured and assaulting golf’s version of Everest brings plenty of rewards.
The routing is clever, yet honest, the turf excellent, and the views are worth the admission price alone.
Herbert Fowler, Alister MacKenzie and, principally, James Braid all found plenty to work with in West Yorkshire.
Halifax sets out its stall from the first tee box. Try that opening hole from the championship markers, found feet from the windows of the clubhouse and demanding a fearsome, and long, carry over a cavernous drop before trying to sink a putt on a winding green that will simply befuddle you.
The 2nd, an absolute belter of a MacKenzie par 3, might only be a wedge, but just gaze at that putting surface – raised, mounded on all sides, and demanding precision.
The experience doesn’t dip. From there, you’ll criss-cross fairways, weave through streams, hit between hills and become one with the bracken.
There’s many other holes to note but the 12th, which thrills from the back as a par 4 and is almost as difficult as a par 3 from the forward tees, makes you consider an almost blind tee shot to a low lying green. There’s something delicious about hitting a well struck shot and not knowing just how good it is until you’re only yards away.
The tee shot on the 16th, cut back from the fairway, is impressive but this slight dogleg is elevated further when you reach the green and gaze out at an outstanding Yorkshire panorama.
And then there’s 17, a hole so remarkable it’s spawned its own video tributes on the club website.
If you’re looking for an easy walk, Halifax is not your course. But if you want glorious surroundings, your senses heightened, and some genuinely remarkable golf course architecture, slip on some spikes and take on the challenge. You won’t regret it.