Played here last night at 4:00.
To give the course a fair shake it appears the course has seen some effects from the recent monsoons.
The greens are surprisingly soft this time of year. Most likely from all the recent rain. They were rolling a medium to medium fast. However the greens have seen a lot of play. They have been pelted. The front nine greens are the worst. They are beat up with ball marks. At first I thought it was because people weren't repairing their ball marks but then as the round progressed I noticed almost every pitch was leaving a divot and they were very difficult to repair due to the soft moist greens. Only this half is open and coupled with the monsoon softness the greens are heavily devoted.
The bunkers are superb here, consistent high quality. Not fluffy but very evenly maintained. The tee boxes are moderately worn too. They were lumpy and have the divots of a lot of plays. Some uneven tees but nothing dramatic. Fairways were lush because of the rain but there were lots of damaged areas. Fairways are a little beat up. Lots of residiual brown areas from when it was dried out before the rain. Also it appears they dug holes and added additional drains in low area of some fairways to help it drain so there is some damage from those.
Fortunately most of the damaged, heavily played holes were in the front half of the opening nine. Once you made the turn, and especially once you climbed to the mountain holes it gets pure. The bermuda has grown in nicely in the shaded holes and fairways were lush on those holes.
I can see why people either love or hate this course. Although I disagree with those who hate it. This course is desert golf that embraces the extreme. The monument rock in the middle of the fairway is sweet. The lava rocks sprinkled in the approaches is an awesome visual effect. The opening 9 is nothing too special past the first 3 holes but once it makes the turn uphill on the back nine this course is absolutely spectacular. The 12th, 14th and 15th holes are world class amazing holes. The 15th is absolutely stupid beautiful and amazing with it's views.
I do agree 18th could use a little more substance as it's quite easy. But I personally love the minimilistic finish. It's the perfect complement to the first. The first hole is on the ridiculous side and makes you nervous about what you are about to embark on, then the 18th is an easy landing back to reality after the breathtaking finish to this course.
It's the adult big brother to the Boulders in my opinion. The greens aren't overly difficult. The course isn't too tight and the approaches aren't overly demanding. You have to play this course in control and strategic and can't go driver every hole. The course isn't too long and the short par 4's balance out the two long 470+ plus ones which are quite demanding.
This is far and away the best course I've played out here and it is a must play to any golfer. I think it's a spectacular display of golf course design and ingenuity.
This is a course I will pay to play during winter to see it in mint condition as it would be worth the winter rates.» Close