Nicklaus Visits Bear Mountain in British Columbia

Jack Nicklaus returned to the Bear Mountain Golf & Country Club in Victoria B.C. last week for what was billed a “legendary day.” Nicklaus played a round of golf on the course he and son Steve Nicklaus co-designed. Having opened in 2004, the course is now the cornerstone of Bear Mountain Resort, one of Canada’s first master-planned communities.

“This is a gorgeous parcel of land for a golf course,” said Nicklaus. “People will enjoy playing here as it has so much to offer and they won’t get tired of playing it. There are also some unbelievable views.”

After a morning golf clinic, Nicklaus teed off on the front nine with Bear Mountain’s investors. The group includes Bear Mountain developer and former NHL hockey player Len Barrie, and several current and former NHL players: Mike Vernon (Calgary Flames), Gary Roberts (Florida Panthers), Rob Niedermeyer (Anaheim Ducks), Greg Adams (Vancouver Canucks) and Stanley Cup winner Ray Whitney (Carolina Hurricanes). All were thrilled to play with the golf legend.

“Some of the guys were more nervous teeing up the ball with Nicklaus than playing for the Stanley Cup,” said Barrie. “With these guys as investors, it’s like having a second family. I used to play hockey with or against them and now we are one team working together on a fantastic project. This is one of those great days you just dream about.”

On the back nine, Barrie and Nicklaus had the course to themselves and, even though Nicklaus currently spends most of his time designing courses (more than 250 to date), he still dazzled onlookers with his golf game, getting two early birdies.