Best Afternoon Delight

Valleaire Golf Club

Technically, Valleaire is a public course. But if you meander through wooded Hinckley and onto the course's first tee late in the afternoon, it'll feel private -- completely and utterly and there-ain't-another-hacker-out-here private. For reasons we can't figure, this interesting and affordable par-72 layout is often damn-near empty, making it prime real estate for the time-starved or self-conscious duffer. It's not the course's fault: Especially on the front nine, Valleaire offers amusing yet small holes that require just enough thought and precision, but are easy enough to make for a relaxing afternoon.