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5 Golf Tips From Our Club Pro

Ryan Peterson is a PGA Head Golf Professional and instructor at The Wilderness at Fortune Bay. Ryan offers individual lessons to adults and junior golfers. He also offers group lessons, ladies clinics and our new “create your own clinic” in which you pick what works best for you!

We asked Ryan what he would say are his 5 top golf tips, and his answers follow:

Weight Transfer

One of the most common mistakes I see is the lack of weight transfer during and at the completion of the swing. You want to drive your legs towards the target, have a good hip turn, and completely transfer all the weight to the left side (for right-handed golfers - opposite for left). You should be facing the target with all the weight on the left side at the completion of the swing.



Your body and the target are on two different paths. The target line is the line between the ball and the target. The body line is how your feet, knees, hips, and shoulders line up parallel to the target line. Your bodyline is always slightly left of your target line (body line is parallel to the target line). So, don’t line your body to the target line as you ’ll have a good chance to hit it right!


The grip should be placed more in the fingers of both hands. You want to avoid putting the grip in your palms. It may feel stronger but is really the opposite. Place your hands on the grip like you would hold a suitcase.


Full Swing

The full swing is not about swinging as hard as you can. A full swing should be 80% of the max. By sticking to that you will have better distance control and more consistent ball contact. Then when you need a few more yards you can give it a little extra.


Avoid 3 putts by creating a consistent tempo and swing length. Try to have the putter head follow through after the ball the same distance as the backswing; if 6 inches back then 6 inches through. Create a consistent tempo/rhythm by thinking of a specific beat or melody or just by counting. Put them together and will start to have better distance control.

For more details on golf lessons at the Wilderness at Fortune Bay, call (218) 753-8917, or visit our contact page.


Gearing Up for Golf in 2018

The beginning of the golf season is approaching quickly. The weather is warming up and before you know it, you’ll be out on the green enjoying the great outdoors.


Here in Minnesota, beautiful outdoor scenery isn’t hard to come by, but you’ll only find one premier resort golf destination in a location as breathtaking as The Wilderness at Fortune Bay. We are so proud to say that our course is consistently ranked one of the best golf courses in Minnesota and the country by national golf publications.




As we gear up and prepare the course to open for the season on Friday, May 4, we couldn’t be more excited to share all the information you’ll need to plan your perfect weekend getaway.



Golf the Wilderness 2018 Rates and Packages

For the 2018 season, we have a few different options available for guests. First, we offer Daily Play on weekdays for $71 and weekends for $74. These prices will last through May 17. This is a great option for those who just want to come for the day, enjoy the views, and play some top-notch golf. Click here to learn more about the specials that we offer and to view prices for the rest of the season, as they vary slightly.


Second, we offer two different Play & Stay Packages; Play & Stay Weekday for $121 and Play & Stay Weekend for $135. These prices include golf and lodging for one night and will remain through May 17, to view the prices as they change over the season, click here. This package is ideal for those who want to make their experience with us at into a little vacation. Whether you’re from out of state or just down the road, a weekend with us on beautiful Lake Vermillion will not disappoint.


Finally, we do offer customizable packages for large groups of 12 or more during the golf season. Click here for more information about group packages and for contact information to plan your perfect group golf outing.


With Fortune Bay Resort on site, you do not have to hop in your car at any point of your stay. The 172-room resort has plenty of activities for all ages. We have a pool, sauna, arcade, exercise room, meeting rooms, casino, RV park, a full-service marina with boat rentals, complimentary non-motorized watercrafts for resort guests and several dining options.



Featured Holes

There are a few holes on our course that are particularly special and deserve to be highlighted due to their spectacular natural beauty. Don’t miss these exceptional views and golf experiences when you plan your outing.




#3 The Walleye

This hole is the first par 3 in the course and it’s located adjacent to a large wetland, which means that bird and other animal sightings are very common. The tee box sits just on the edge of a forest of evergreens and right in front of the box, you’ll find a scenic pond!



#7 The Osprey

This hole has the most stunning views on the course. The tees sit high above its surroundings and offer amazing panoramic views of Lake Vermillion, the hills, and beyond into wild northern Minnesota. Also, it is common to spot Ospreys hunting over the wetland behind this green.



#13 The Muskellunge

Number 13 is the signature hole here at The Wilderness at Fortune Bay. It runs right up to and along the shores of Lake Vermillion, where you’ll spot ducks, loons, eagles, ospreys, and more.



#16 The Eagle

A challenge awaits late in the game at this par 5. The fairway splits into an upper and lower; the upper offers a significant assist if you can get there. The green is perched on a hill high above the surrounding land and offers phenomenal views of large ponds and wetlands.


We are extremely lucky here at The Wilderness at Fortune Bay, we are nestled in one of the most beautiful and scenic spots that a person could ask for. From our beautiful course to our delicious food to our excellent lodging, we do our absolute best to provide an unforgettable experience.


We hope to see you out on the green this coming season!


Holiday Events at the Wilderness at Fortune Bay

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We invite you to join us this November for two exciting events at The Wilderness. Dig into delicious dinners at our top-rated grill overlooking gorgeous views of Fortune Bay.

Holiday Party

On November 11th, the grill will serve a four-course dinner with wine pairings and two specialty drinks: a holiday cocktail and spiced punch. Take home recipes to recreate these dishes at home. Plus, make DIY napkin rings and take home instructions to make a full set for your holiday dinner guests. The cost for this fun event is only $50 and the party starts at 3:00 PM – reservations required.

Fall Harvest Dinner Event

Looking for the perfect, upscale date night? Let us wow you with our Fall Harvest Dinner Event menu. It includes your choice of entree, a pork roast with rutabaga apple mash and rhubarb chutney for $32 or prosciutto wrapped trout with asparagus, roasted tomato, and white rice for $36. These delicious dinners also include cucumber crostini and fire and ice salad for starters as well as a strawberry rhubarb mousse cake for dessert. The flavor combinations will tempt your taste buds and deliver a truly delicious dining experience. Dinner is served from 4 PM to 8 PM on Monday, November 20th. Limited seating is available and reservations are required, so call today!

These exciting events will undoubtedly be some of the most enjoyable things you do this November! Reserve your seat to feast on gourmet food and have some fun! Whether you are interested in a holiday party, a dinner event, or both, call Darlene at 218-753-7508 for reservations to these upcoming events.

The Wilderness at Fortune Bay: The Best Way to Tee Off the Summer

You don’t have to do a lot of research to find the perfect northern Minnesota summer vacation destination. The Wilderness at Fortune Bay is more than just a place for a great game of golf. It has all the amenities for the perfect family getaway this summer. Fortune Bay Resort features a 173-room resort, RV park, marina, delicious dining options and the incredible view of Lake Vermilion. And, of course, one of the most beautiful golf courses in Minnesota.

The Hotel

Our hotel rooms feature deluxe standard rooms, premium rooms, suites and executive suites. All of our rooms have a mini-fridge and microwave, along with everything else you would expect from a first-class resort like Fortune Bay. To check availability, call 1-800-555-1714.

The Casino

Our casino features 850 different video games, including video poker and video keno. Visit during the week to take part in our Wednesday slot tournaments. Our table games feature Blackjack and Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em. Our summer hours offer plenty of time to go home with some cash in your pocket.

Play 10 different varieties of video poker on our 25 Game King machines. If you love good old-fashioned poker, our Poker Room is open Thursdays beginning at 6 PM, Fridays at 4 PM, and at noon on Saturday and Sundays.

The Wilderness Grill

If you’re hungry, The Wilderness Grill can help with that! Our breakfast menu has traditional favorites but also features unique items like our breakfast tacos and our pork belly sandwich.
We also offer up a late lunch menu with favorites like the 19th Hole Burger and Smoked Duck Pastrami. At dinner, try our house favorites like filet mignon and sea bass from 4 PM to close. To make a reservation, please call 218-753-7804.

As a bonus, enjoy your meal on the patio. You can’t go wrong with the scenic view from the deck at The Wilderness Grill. The view of Lake Vermilion will leave you breathless.

The Outdoors

The one thing you can’t forget is taking advantage of Lake Vermilion. The trails area will make any seasoned hiker happy with scenic views of the wonders of nature. The Black Bay Peninsula Hiking trail offers six miles of walking while the Tower Hiking Trail has miles of red pine forest to power through.

The camping options are also strong at our RV Park. We feature 16 drive-thru sites with water available. The park is in a spectacular setting and is just minutes away from everything at the resort.

The Links

The Wilderness at Fortune Bay is one of Minnesota’s top resort golf destinations. It’s designed by architect Jeffrey D. Brauer and is surrounded by the shores of Lake Vermilion. The course has six different tee options that range from 7,207 yards to 5,324 yards. No matter what your skill level is, you can find a tee option that works for you.

To get some warm-ups in, visit our extensive practice area. The driving range opens each day 45 minutes before the first available tee time. There is also golf instruction available from our head professional.

So, whether you’re looking to improve your golf game or take the entire family on a terrific summer vacation, we hope to see you this summer at Fortune Bay!

The Little Things: Golfing The Wilderness at Fortune Bay

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Welcome to the north; A land of deep waters, rocky surfaces, thick forests, and unrelenting weather patterns. The summer’s are warm and the winter’s are downright uninhabitable. The wind howls, the forests speak, the darkness arises and the creatures crawl. The winters - oh, don’t get me started on the winters - but, even after all the harshness, after all the hostility of the north, there’s really no place like home. That’s what I am. I am The Wilderness.

You’ll find me in Tower, Minnesota on the shores of Lake Vermilion, in the heart of The Iron Range. I’m wild, unpredictable, and completely Minnesotan. My fairways stretch far and forests run deep. But there are many little things that make me what I am. Little things that you may not realize at first glance.

For instance, I’m built on an area full of granite; actually, many of my features were not so much designed as blasted with dynamite. It might look picturesque and tranquil, but If you dig down much deeper than four feet, you won’t find lush soil - you’ll find hard rock and iron. You can actually see my rock features protruding throughout the course.

Now, to you, this might look like nothing more than a ridge of rock - something to avoid. To me, it’s a reminder that below the manicured lawns and carefully positioned shrubs lies minerals that have been on this land longer than any golfer can imagine.

But there is more to my wildness than just rock.

These mighty golf hazards are White Pine trees - common in my neck of the woods. You’ll find many holes named after these trees, but if you find yourself looking up from your ball to see this view, you’re probably not in the location you desired.

If you look down and see something like this, you’re in a my sand. And let me say, this isn’t a walk on the beach. I’ve got these peppered all over my landscape just to add a bit of difficulty to my already wild trek.

Now, if you see this view close up, hopefully you’ve got a spare golf ball or two, cus your first one is not coming back; You should see the collections I gather some days.

The staff members who maintain my beauty throughout the season are very deliberate in their actions. Besides the natural hazards, my staff keep the grounds in check and add bits of what may seem like decoration to visitors, but are purposeful assets to me.

Take these flowers, for example. Yes, they’re pretty, but marigolds have a very important job to do. They give off a strong scent, so they’re good at keeping varmints from digging holes or eating grass. So when you visit, please don’t go all Caddyshack on our marigolds - even if you are Cinderella story outta nowhere – they’re hard a work.

One thing my staff can’t control is the weather. Here, the weather can change on a dime. Don't let my stunning greens and amazing views fool you, my 18 holes are known to be challenging even to the best of golfers.

So, come try your best. My elements will test you – see if you have what it takes. And while you’re here make sure to pay attention to the little things that make me the Wilderness at Fortune Bay.

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