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I got down to Marana to play Dove Mountain. I purchased the Underpar deal for two players at about $70 including a free replay. I went down there with high expectations given the reputation of the course and the association with Ritz-Carlton.
I was surprised with the lack of Covid precautions. The shop attendant was not masked and neither were any of the employees. Pins were raised, no sand bottles on the carts yet they had rakes in every bunker.
The bag drop was unattended when we showed up. The number of employees seemed on the light side with no designated starter and the two attendants pulling range duty, loading bags and being the starter. We tried to purchase some drinks before going out but were told the restaurant was closed. Turns out it didn’t open until 3pm. The halfway house was closed all day and only one F&B employee was on duty trying to run the halfway house and the beverage cart. When we inquired about getting food at the turn we were told our only option was turkey wraps but no place to get a drink or chill out for a few before our second 18. I was surprised at the lack of services and employees on a weekend morning at a high end course like here.
Onto the course. Conditions were mixed. Tee boxes were all level but were on the thin side with lots of bare spots and divots. The fairways were all thin with little grass and numerous bare spots. We did get a lot of roll out on tee shots which was good and bad. Many good drives ended up rolling through the fairway or into hazards. The bunkers were all in good shape but had a number of large rocks. The greens were mostly good. They were very receptive of shots but were filled with ball marks, bare spots, old hole locations and sanded spots. They were difficult to get a read on and very undulated. You definitely needed to be on the right level and side of the hole to have a chance at your putt. A two putt from distance felt like making birdie and not par.
I thought the course was challenging overall. Many holes required less than driver and would still require a mid iron to the green. You definitely have to place your shots in the right are to have a chance. The course appears tight than it really is from the tee box. You have to deal with a lot of desert on approach shots. Most par 5s required lay ups unless you can accurately hit a 300++ yard drive.
I would enjoy playing this course again with better conditions. I’m not sure how they are getting any play especially at the “normal” price they are charging. The Underpar deal was good and I will probably purchase again next year if the run it again.
9 Likes.
I played the Boulders north side on 7/11 around 10am. Check in was easy.
Driving range and range balls were both in disappointing conditions. The range had very little grass and the balls were in poor shape. Not what I was expecting from a place like this.
POP was slow with the group in front of us waiting for the group in front of them to get on the green before hitting their tee shots. We waited on nearly every shot all round. No marshals were seen to try and get groups moving.
Only saw the beverage cart twice during the round. Thankfully they have a couple water and ice stations on the course.
Conditions on the course were mostly good to outstanding for the time of year. Temperatures in Phoenix have been above 110 and the course had a few dry spots. Tee boxes were all level and had plenty of coverage. Bunkers were consistent with plenty of sand. The greens were the highlight. Soft and receptive of well struck shots. Consistent speed throughout the round. They were the best part of the course.
I was disappointed in the unfortunate way people playing a high end course treat the course itself. Not fixing ball marks on the greens, scuffing the greens with your clubs, leaving tees in the tee boxes. I understand most courses have removed rakes from bunkers but at least try to smooth it out with your feet? Takes about 10 seconds.
The Boulders is a good choice. The best conditioned course I have played this summer. A fun course with some challenging holes but overall playable.
8 Likes.
I played Grayhawk Raptor around noon. The course was busy but customer service was good as always.
I’ve reviewed this course and the facility a few times and many of the highlights are the same. The greens were pure and fun to play. They were a good medium fast speed and consistent. Tee boxes were all in good shape. The bunkers were all good.
Some lowlights included numerous dry and bare spots throughout the course. We’ve had high temps the last week and it looks like the fairways took the brunt of the heat. I’ve never played Grayhawk and had the fairways play like this. Lots of divots throughout the course as well.
Overall, I enjoy play Grayhawk from time to time. I would give the course some time to recover before playing.
8 Likes.
I made the drive to Florence to give Poston Butte a shot. Fee was about $40 for a 1:44 time. Previous reviewer, jciapa02, made a great review in April and hit all the great parts of the course. Conditions aren’t quite as pristine as they probably were in April but still in awesome shape. Not too much play going on but I joined with another single and we got around in about two and a half hours.
It was windy today and it added some difficulty to the course. Greens were fun, fast and consistent.
My only complaint is the bunkers. My partner and I both had balls bury in the sand. Lots of sand in the bunkers, almost too much.
Given conditions right now and the rate, Poston Butte is worth a little drive.
7 Likes.
I played the Duke on a late afternoon tee time of 230. The course was busy even at that time. Gas carts with no real frills.
Driving range conditions including the balls were poor. The range consisted of dry grass with nothing to get a good lie.
Course conditions were mixed. I played the black tees at 7000 on the scorecard and it didn’t play that long. Looks like summer came early with dry fairways and plenty of roll out on drives. Lies in the fairways were thin with lots of bare spots. Anything off the fairways was inconsistent with no real rough.
Greens were in good shape but plenty of unrepaired ball marks. They were medium slow but had lots of subtle breaks at the hole.
I hadn’t played here in a number of years and wanted to give it a shot. I wasn’t too disappointed given the price but wouldn’t count on conditions holding up throughout the summer.
6 Likes.
I played GCU on a mid afternoon round teeing off around 1230. The course was busy but not jam packed. Numerous Covid precautions in place including a closed clubhouse and range balls delivered to the range.
Course conditions don’t differ much from my review last year. Conditions off the fairways are iffy. No rough to speak of but hard pan and weeds throughout. The greens and bunkers are in great condition.
A good course right now to challenge your game a bit.
8 Likes.
I got out to the town of Maricopa to play Southern Dunes. The drive took close to an hour for me due to the only road into Maricopa down to one lane. Those who know the road understand it isn’t the best to begin with.
We teed off around 1020 as a foursome in three carts. Precautions are taken including a touch less door handle, no rakes, no divot mix and pool noodles in the hole. Customer service, as most Troon managed courses is at the top of the game. U limited bottles of water provided due to the high temperature and lack of water coolers on the course. Nice touch and something you only see at high end courses.
The course was still in awesome spring time shape. We’ve only recently seen temperatures climb in Phoenix and you can tell on the course. Nice green fairways and the greens were a highlight through the round. They were on the firm side. Even we’ll struck approach shots seemed to have a good amount of roll out to them. I really enjoyed putting on them. Well struck putts would hold their line.
As previous reviewers stated the course is no push over. Accuracy, length and a good short game are necessary here. Lots of bunkers clearly but I feel a lot of them are there to visually intimidate you off the tee. The course is forgiving enough if you can find grass under your ball. Scores can be had.
Overall, a great course to make the trip out there every so often. If you live close it’s definitely a track to play often especially as summer months come.
A warning for those not familiarity. A few farms are around and they do have a lot of cows at them. Good luck when the wind blows just right. Also, lots of insects will follow you around the course. Those are really the only drawbacks to the course.
4 Likes.
I played mid-day round here on the North/South combo which is the original 18. PV has taken many precautions related to Covid19 including spacing their tee times to every 10 minutes. This change made a huge difference in my opinion. All single players receive their own golf cart.
Course conditions were good overall. No major complaints about anything on the course. I haven’t played here in a few years but I think they have tried to improve the course.
The greens were fun with much more subtle breaks than I can remember from playing here previously. It’s a fun mix of holes and the par 5s are good scoring chances.
Overall, recommended especially considering the price and pace of play.
10 Likes.
I was visiting the in-laws in Maricopa and made the short drive to Casa Grande to play Francisco Grande. Rate was $34 plus a little extra for range balls. The course and resort has a lot of history but the surrounding area is nothing to get excited about.
The grass on the driving range was great but you are hitting into dirt range with ample targets.
The course is long for sure with lots of tall trees throughout. It’s a fun mix of holes through the rounds.
The fairways were in mostly good shape but on the dry side. Some landing areas were hard as a rock. The greens were in great shape save for a few with bare and/or damaged areas. They were firm and that needed to be taken into account. Bunkers were in decent shape but on the crusty side.
I enjoyed playing but not sure it’s a destination course. For the price and conditions you can’t beat Francisco Grande in its current conditions.
8 Likes.
I got out to Encanto in the afternoon with a 2:30 tee time. Rate was $45 with cart. The course wasn’t full but a number of players out. They have taken protective measures in the clubhouse and on the course. A plexiglass window separates you from the pro shop attendant. No sand bottles on the carts, no rakes in the bunkers and the holes all had foam inside to keep you from reaching all the way into the cup.
I was paired up with two walkers and pace was good all round. Didn’t have to wait besides the group in front of us waiting for players to clear the green before teeing off on a few holes.
Conditions were fair throughout. The fairways had good grass coverage with few bare spots. Anything off the fairway was a crap shoot. No rough to speak of but lots of weeds, dirt and bare spots. The greens were all consistent and putted well during the round. Bunkers were good with plenty of sand.
As I’ve reviewed before, the course isn’t overly challenging with plenty of chances to score but some holes will sneak up on you. Right now, Encanto is a good place for a fun and stress free round.
7 Likes.
I had the opportunity to participate in an awesome GK Plays at SCW Deer Valley. The event was fun and well organized. A great turnout today on a great course.
Really nothing negative to say about this place. Very nice conditions all throughout the round. Great grass coverage all over the course. The greens and bunkers were really the highlight of the day. Bunkers were in great shape and enjoyable to play. The greens were immaculate. Consistent throughout the day.
Thanks to John and Pat for a great event.
10 Likes.
We teed off this morning around 915 for a rate of $35. The course presents itself as high end but range balls are not included. The range was interesting. On the small side, chewed up with uneven lies, hard as a rock range balls and dirt making up most of the range. Gas carts. I was a bit disappointed with the lack of extras I was expecting at the course considering it’s semi private.
As noted by previous reviewers it’s definitely a Dye course. Offline shots are subject to uneven lies. The course’s defense isn’t length but play around the greens. Tricky and fairly quick greens proved to be a challenge.
Conditions were typical AZ summer. Tee boxes were unusually thin throughout the round. The greens were fun. Consistent and on the quick side. Fun to play. Overall, a fun course to play but not really a destination spot.
7 Likes.
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