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This is my first time playing here at River Ridge. JohnnyGK set up the tee time as part of our GK Cup match. What a fun course!! Track is built on a rolling hillside so a number of the holes have fun elevation changes. As the name suggests, the course has several lakes that come into play. Including hole 13 which has water on both sides of the narrow fairway. Whereas there aren't any forced carries, the water is definitely in play on 6-8 holes (I put 2 in the drink).

With the exception of the lakes, course is fairly open putting a premium on grip it and rip it. #16 sits on top of the hill offering views of the city below.

As for conditions, greens were in excellent conditon. Rolling smooth, divot free, and offering just enough break to make you think but not feel like your putting on a frozen diamond (aka, Spanish Bay & Blackhorse).

Fairways, were ok. Definitely in winter condition but still very playable. The real downside to the grass conditions of the course was just off the green. There were several "tufts" of live grass 2-3" tall mixed in with patches of dormant grass. This made getting a club on the ball very tough.

Fairway and green side bunkers were both in decent condition, except RAKE Your d%mn bunkers people. I found footprints in every (4) bunker I was in.

POP play was a tad on the slower side but that was mainly due to the sister course being closed for maintainance and the nice weather so everyone was trying to get their round in before the expected rain coming later in the week.

This track doesn't go back by the clubhouse at the turn. There is a snack shop at the turn but it was closed. No beverage cart out, so come prepared with snacks and water.

This course has everything I like in a track; elevation changes, water hazards, great greens and a fun layout !!

There are course that are recommended if in the area and then there are course that are worth the drive. RR is definitely a must play when in the area, and during prime condition it is just below the "worth the drive" mark.

I see myself making this a "stopover" course while traveling down to San Diego next trip.
It's hard to believe I haven't played here for 3 months. Blackhorse is one of my peninsula favorite courses. Conditions are usually above average (but not quite superior like Quail or Spyglass). Blackhorse is a challenging course. Every green has multiple tiers and breaks making the preferred landing area very small. In addition to that the greens are firm so holding approach shots can be difficult at times.

The layout is fun with several elevation changes throughout the course. Numerous views of the Monterey Bay help ease the pain of the difficult greens.

Greens are in decent shape but are in need of the upcoming maintainance next week. They are rolling a little slow (medium speed) right now. More than likely they haven't been mowed in a couple days due to the rain we've had this week.

Fairways weren't bad. A few thin areas but very palpable throughout. Fairways were super soft due to the recent rain so roll out on drives was non-existent.

First cut of rough was lush throughout.

This course sits in a cooler foggy area of the peninsula. It's not uncommon for temps to be 10 degrees cooler at Blackhorse than at surrounding neighborhoods just a few miles down the road. It may be sunny and warm at your hotel but it can be cool and damp at Bayonet/Blackhorse. Come prepared with extra layers.

Also, unlike Bayonet, you will not go back by the clubhouse at the turn (or at anytime during the round). The beverage cart is regularly out during prime time and there is a cooler with bottled waters on the 10th tee box. Other than that make sure you are stocked up with food and drinks.
Hot off the press!!! Dragonfly is finally doing some major maintainance on the sand traps! It looks like they are following suit with other courses in the valley and overhauling the bunkers. I can't wait! Not that it will help my pathetic sand play but that's another story. I was in 6 bunkers today which ranged from poor to ok at best. The good news is that within a few weeks the bunkers should all be very nice.

As for the rest of the course, it's still in great shape. Greens roll smooth and true. I will say that I'm curious about their mowing procedure. The speeds were all over the place on the front nine. They were consistently on the medium/slow side on the back nine.

Fairways are still dormant but very playable. Beverage cart was out making the rounds as well.
Quail is always a great course with superb conditions. Greens are spacious with nothing too drastic regarding undulations. They were rolling super fast today. Well struck balls would hold but anything coming out of the rough would run like crazy.

Fairways are about as close to perfect as you'll get. Fairways are also pretty wide making it easy to rack up the FIR stat. It also helps pace of play. Tee boxes are level, lush and divot free. Sand traps have excellent sand in them.

Course was packed today and was cart path only making the POP slower than normal.

Track is slightly above average with top notch conditions all around. The restaurant
/bar has outdoor seating that looks onto the driving range and 9th green. A local secret is the Thursday night prime rib!
A quick update on course conditions. Greens are fast and smooth as usual but are starting to show signs of needing aeration. Still, they remain a strong suit of the course. Fairways are dormant but very playable. Sand traps actually have SAND!!!

The Maintenance crew was out today dumping sand in a few of the bunkers so it looks like they are in the process of upgrading the bunkers to quality sand.

After that the only thing the course needs is a lake or two. Clubhouse is the best in the valley with Pheasant Run being a close second. Nothing else even comes close.
A Quick update on course conditions. Tee'd off at 39 degree temps so I walked the first 9 to keep warm. Course is very easy to walk as it is completely flat with normal transfers between holes. Greens are still very nice. Firm and rolling at a medium-fast pace. They are firm enough to the point that holding shots is 50/50.

Tee boxes were in nice shape. No issues there at all. Fairways were thin but I had decent lies most of the day until the last two holes. My partner seemed to get the worst of the fairways so I guess it's just a crap shoot. Areas around the green were manageable. Not bad for winter conditions.

Sand traps (I was in 3) were much improved. No they aren't as nice as premium courses but they were decent enough to be predictable.
Dragonfly is always a go to course while in the valley. Fairways and tee boxes are completely dormant but offer great hitting surfaces. The color of the grass may be brown but the lies are great. The fairways feel like your walking in a soft sponge. That softness did kill any rollout from the driver but offered a very nice hitting surface on approach shots.

Greens were a little firmer than normal but still rolled nicely when putting. This is only my 3rd time walking the track. Whereas it is a completely flat course there are some long transfers between a few of the holes.

The 18th has now gone from a long par 4 to a short par 5. That is unless you're playing it in the summer afternoon headwind. Then it's a bonafide par 5.

There was no beverage cart out but being a weekday with expected rain, I can totally understand that.

Pace of play is always average here. I was stuck behind a five some who wouldn't let me through for 8 holes then I blasted through the remainder of the course.

All told this is a solid track with very nice playing conditions.
It's been a while since I've played here. This is usually my go to course for a quick inexpensive mid week round when I'm feeling lazy (or it's too cold) to go for a bike ride. Unfortunately, I was stuck behind the last group of a high school tournament so it was much slower today. Usually mid week I can finish in well under 3 hours.

Conditions have deteriorated since the last I time I was here in September or October.
Greens were about the same as usual which is slightly under what you would expect for a muni course. Though they were rolling much faster today.

Fairways were thin and patchy. 1/2 the lies were decent, 1/4 were bad but playable and 1/4 were foot wedges to a decent hitting surface. Areas around the green were the worst. Very hard to get any type of decent lie.

The rough was actually pretty nice. Thick but lush in most places. Tee boxes were the same as the fairways with even worse conditions on the par 3's.

Customer service is good unless James is working then it's great! He makes everyone feel welcomed and comfortable whether you're a first time beginner or scratch golfer. Also, the gals in the kitchen are very friendly with great customer service skills

I've detailed the course layout in other posts so I won't go into much detail here. Its basically a flat muni style layout tight front 9 that's very walkable and a more open back 9.

I've never seen a beverage cart here but then, I always play mid day midweek.

Whereas course conditions have slipped a bit over the last few months, I know they are working hard at getting it back into shape.
Ended up with a few hours of down time today so I swung into Madera for a quick(ish) round A quick update on course conditions since my summer post. Greens still remain the strong point of the course. They are a bit above average for a muni course. Fairways are thin but offer a good amount of roll. Tee boxes are hit and miss with several being below average, condition wise. Very patchy with several thin areas. Sand traps have always been the weak link of Madera and it looks like they are in the process of doing something about them. There were a few traps with mounds of sand dumped in them in preparation of being repaired.

The fairways are fairly wide but there are a few holes with strategically placed trees in the middle. Also a number of tee boxes are placed on the extreme edge of the fairway up against the tree lines. Not sure if this was a design flaw or an attempt to be creative. To me it's the former.

I've mentioned before how pace of play is always slow here. Well, it might not be the players after all. The carts are super slow!

Overall, it's a decent course with average muni course conditions.
I've played Avila a half dozen times or so and conditions seem to come and go like the tide. Greens were in decent shape. Firm and fast. They had a few pitch marks here and there that caused some bumps and lumps, but weren't too bad overall.

Fairways were ok. Tee boxes were absolutely atrocious.

As for the layout, it's a blast. Avila is a shot makers course with a few wide open holes to blast away in between. The track has hills to negotiate like the par 5 #3 you have to go up and over to get to the small green, a few lakes/ponds surrounding par 3 greens and three forced carries over the ocean inlet.

Hole #11 also has a small cutout in the middle if a hill that you have to negotiate. Other tee shots require place kicker accuracy to split the uprights between trees planted on both sides of the tee boxes. Fun times!!

You will use every club in your bag and every shot in your arsenal. Fun factor meter on this course is pegged, with conditions .... Good enough to let you post a good score but bad enough to give you an excuse if you don't.
I kept hearing a bunch of hoopla about some course called Rams Hill. Seeing some great reviews on GK I told myself I need to play it and see what it's all about. One slight problem. The course is waaaaay out in the middle of nowhere. It's about halfway between San Diego and Palm Springs. Not a bad drive if you live in either of those places but a heck of a haul from Northern Califirnia With so many great options at both locations, Rams Hill just never made the list on any of the So Cal golf trips.

Johnny GK gave me an invite and when the MAN himself invites you, you make the trip.

And let me tell you it Was WORTH every minute of the drive!!

The course had everything that I like in a track: elevation changes, multiple water hazards, great playing conditions, and excellent customer service.

Per my intel this used to be two private courses that is now one "resort" style course. Greens were spacious that offered some fun challenges but gentle enough to give up a handful of birdies to the group (sadly none to me).

Fairways are wide enough that errant shots can usually be found in the first cut of rough which was thick but manageable.

The water hazards are off to the side with hole 11 having a river/stream flowing down the entire left side. It's probably my favorite hole on the course. There are no forced carries over any of the water hazards which takes a couple points off the design For me but not that big of a deal breaker.

The views are amazing and all in all the layout is awesome with a number of fun holes. Most holes are fairly straight with only a couple of severe dog leg holes.

There have been some recent articles about Rams Hill being the third best resort course behind Pebble Beach and Spyglass Hill. Whereas I can't say that I agree with that statement (there are just so many great courses in California) I can say that Rams Hill is Definitely, definitely worth the drive and a fun track.

I did have several issues with the website, but that may have been a compatibility issue with my iPad.
It's always fun to play where the pros just played. Having only played a few course where the PGA and LPGA play, I can see why they post so many low scores here at Nick T (as the locals call it). Condition wise the fairways and greens are perfect. Not that I found many fairways today mind you (but that's a different story).

The greens are decent size, hold approach shots, roll true and have the perfect balance between fun and challenging breaks. Compared to some of the other treacherous greens the professionals play, these are very manageable.

The rest of the course is top notch as expected. Track has numerous lakes to keep things fun and interesting with two (semi) island greens. One on a par 3 and one on a shorter par 5.

There are houses boarding most holes which is a drawback for some people. I'm not sure if walking is allowed here or not. I can tell you this, it would be a tough course to walk as there are numerous looooong transfers.

It's a tough course but then you'd expect it to be if the pro's are playing it.
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