Back in the late 80s, I started a putt-putt rivalry with my friend James. Who knows how many rounds of putt-putt we played in Austin while in college (Peter Pan Mini Golf on Barton Springs, and another one near Highland Mall were frequented quite a bit). Graduation moved James to Houston and me to Temple, but there were courses in both of those towns and we visited each other semi-regularly. Finally, James moved to Africa 14 years ago, so our playing time has been limited to furloughs for him. But we’ve played in Atlanta, and it seems some other places as well.
Today we resumed the rivalry after 4 long years by going to Helen, GA, which has three different locations, one of which has two courses. Needless to say, we made up for lost time, but getting in 72 holes of mini golf. We finished 2-2, alternating wins.
If you are ever in Helen and happen to want to play a little putt-putt, Bavarian Mountain is the best course of the three:
In addition to being the best course in town (with two separate 18 hole courses), the owners, Jim and Doris were extremely friendly and we enjoyed visiting with them greatly (and Romeo and Juliet were nice too).
This was followed by Pirates Cove (where one has to pay for parking!?).
And bringing up the rear was Alpine Golf. It was the prettiest of the courses with lots of flowers everywhere, but the holes did not role very true, and the layout was rather bland and unimaginative.
The only redeeming factor for Alpine Golf was the ice cream shop.
One of the oddities of all three that we had never experienced before was all the holes were lined with bricks, with small gaps in between each brick. While it made for a pretty layout, bricks (with gaps in between) don’t produce accurate bounces consistently.
We ate lunch at Cafe International, a little gazebo, sandwich shop overlooking the Chattahoochee River. They make a good reuben sandwich.