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Played the Crossings with Johnny and the Gurus at 1:40 on Thursday, 6/22/17. Reviews by Lee and Alex really sum up conditions well. We caught a good break on the weather – much cooler near the coast than in most inland areas, with sunshine on the front nine and encroaching marine layer chilling things a little bit on the back, with the result being a pretty steady breeze that played as a crosswind on most holes.

The course was in really good shape and looked great from all angles. Green firmness was a little variable but overall they were great. Good lies in fairways and rough, although rough could be clumpy. The usual issues – many ballmarks on most greens, par-3 tees torn up and not level, sand bottles provided but not used for the many divots in some approach areas (par-3 tees, hole 8 approach, etc.). My only bunker experience was in front of hole 6 – while groomed and smooth, there was only a bare wisp of playing layer over a damp firm base, so I opted to chip out.

Always recommended for interesting layout and challenge, and current conditions are very good.
Played here at 1230 on Sunday, 6/11/17, for my GK Cup 10 2nd round match vs. Rat-patrol – thanks to Jim for making the trip up from San Diego and congrats for his steady performance. We were joined by GKers sr129 and caligolfer1031, so we had a GK group.

We’ve had a lot of very damp June gloom weather here in the south OC for the past couple weeks, and that contributed to the fairly wet conditions we encountered early in our round. The overall course was playing much slower/longer than last year when we were begging for rain. Rough could be longer, damp, and clingy. Green aprons were so damp/bushy that you rarely could putt successfully from fringes and beyond. That wet weather may have delayed/reduced the ability of the course to keep things groomed as close as usual, which may have contributed to Jim’s comment regarding the need for overall mowing. I know there were a couple of instances in the round where I came up well short of target areas that I had played to last year under drier/firmer conditions. We finally got some sunshine in the last half of the round and conditions dried out somewhat. And there was that steady crossbreeze to consider!

Greens looked great and were in very good condition, fairly firm and releasing most shots. They rolled pretty well with few bumps at medium speed. I saw very few old ballmarks and can’t remember any thin/bare areas. Fairways were cut fairly close and gave good lies, with less rollout than I was used to. There were scattered bare areas in both fairways and rough. Tees were in good shape except for the unfilled divots and consistent shagginess. Some blue tees were placed well forward. [Tee markers could use a little paint – there were several instances when we had to make sure to differentiate the blue and white tees. Also, some of the white tees had some pretty significant vegetation growing up in front of them, which could use trimming.] Sand was a mixed bag, with some bunkers looking like new sand and others looking like raked dirt. Some bunker areas were still marked GUR – bunkers here have been a WIP for many years, actually, if you look at past reviews. The large bunker fronting hole 17 looked like an active quarry operation! [And unfortunately there have been many bunkers removed here over the past couple of years, which has altered the strategic aspects of some holes.]

Simple GPS gives only basic distances. The course now uses an entry/exit gate system, which I like, except when cart users run over the gates and cart signs. The wet conditions resulted in some exit areas being a little torn up. Saw the cart girl a couple of times.

Shot of the day was from Greg (caligolfer1031), with a one-hop laser to within 4 feet of a back right pin on #17.

I like this layout and conditions now are very good.
Another kikuyu cow pasture. I’d never played here until today with my monthly club – and won’t likely be burning up the road to get back. I confuse this with Willowick, but I think there's a little more room here - WW is good for getting shelled from adjacent holes. Very noisy/busy course, with a lot going on around the first tee – clubhouse, putting green, driving range (VERY busy), the terminus of several hole loops, and other tees, resulting in lots of crisscrossing traffic. Indifferent conditioning, inconsistent greens, uninspiring conditions.

Many greens are crowned, and with the firmness and scattered thin grass after recent punching it’s like trying to get your ball to stop on an inverted serving bowl. Many of the greens are also significantly elevated, and are very small, so missing means delicate chips from that mean old kikuyu rough. All the greens showed damage from old ballmarks. Sand in the bunkers I was in was plentiful, although my footing in the fairway bunker on #18 was soft and unsure. Fairways generally gave good lies, but lies in the rough were chancy around the many trees and on slopes around the greens, and with some obvious water-system challenges resulting in mushy areas. Also, many fairway and rough areas were recently punched and not well-watered, so look out for the dime-sized dry holes! Tees were pretty terrible – almost all were unlevel, with the markers often set on the edges of the box where extreme slopes and uneven areas were encountered.

We saw extensive cartpath damage from tree roots all over the course. There were 3 groups on #7 when we arrived, capping the 2.75-hour front nine – we finished in just over 5 hours. No marshal. Wind is a significant factor in the afternoon, especially to those elevated greens. We ran out of divot fill pretty quickly and there are no refills available.
Late to the review party for the Guru outing on Thursday afternoon, 6/8/17. Enjoyed playing with Nick and Bob again, and with Arthur for the first time – a laid-back and amicable group. We struggled along a bit the first 6 holes, with a few ball losses and drops, to the point where Johnny sent one of the shop guys out to see if we made a wrong turn toward Disneyland! I think our front nine took almost 3 hours!! But we bumped along to the point where we were actually on the same hole as our “sprinter” group a couple times on the back, and came in not too far behind.

Overall conditions were very good. Fairway lies sat up well, although we dealt with scattered thin/bare areas. Tees were in good shape. Rough was playable unless you strayed well off the beaten path. I was in the fairway bunker on #3 and the sand was level and firm, but the front greenside bunker on that hole could have used a little more sand. Greens were very good – fairly firm, rolling well at medium-fast speed, with good coverage. Not too many old ballmarks.

Shot of the day was from Nick – a long blast from the front bunker on #16 to the back left hole location, then holing a downhill slider for a very nice par. And Bob splitting fairways all day! Thanks to Johnny for another great deal, and always love playing with other GKers.
I have to echo Jim’s comments on the Golf Club of California – the entire course could use more water! After seeing the Guru reviews last week we were expecting better, although amicable Harvey in the shop told us they had slowed the greens down a little after the Member tourney. It was still difficult to get used to putts slowing down on downhill slopes to the southwest!, and a lot of putts were left short yesterday. Almost all lies were tight, and with the recent fairway/rough aeration you could easily get a lie in an unfilled punch hole.

Positives – greens were in good shape, although we did see scattered thin/bare areas. Most greens held shots, but green firmness and speeds were inconsistent through the round. Sand was in good shape, although I found a crusty surface layer in the fairway bunker on #17 that broke up into thumb-sized chunks when raked. Tees were level and sand was available to fill divots on par-3s.

Driving range is well away from the clubhouse but has an accurate clock – nice! Range is on grass and a practice bunker is available, but balls looked discolored and older. No GPS, but a yardage book is available, and many sprinkler heads are marked. Carts have a daily pin sheet - also nice (but hole #1 was inaccurate).

Still recommended for layout and challenge.
Walked on to play super-twilight at 4pm on Friday, 5/26/17. I wanted to get in some swings prior to my GK Cup 10 match on Sunday. The putting green was empty, and the tee uncrowded, so the starter got me out early with a local single at 3:30 - nice. Weather was partly cloudy and breezy and we moved along OK until we ran into a loud foursome playing music and bending elbows and being all over the course – staggered in at 7:35, in just over 4 hours.

As previous reviews noted, everything is in great shape except the greens, which got slammed a few weeks ago after a fertilizer mixture error was followed by hot drier weather, and they burned up. The course is working to bring them back - all greens had scattered thin/bare areas, some more than others. Greens on holes 6, 8, and 15 had to be resodded, and are much softer; some of the others are very firm. Those in better condition are being left “furrier” to make sure they don’t regress, so speeds are only medium fast. We saw lots of old and new ballmarks.

Fairways were firm and gave good lies and rollouts, but we saw many unfilled divots. Rough was cut short and very playable, then you got to the ESA! Traps were all very good quality – except for the many unraked areas. Tees were mostly OK, but many were sloping; there was divot damage on many non par-3s, which was strange.

The course is using an entry/exit gate system to minimize cart damage along fairway margins. There’s a good GPS in the carts, but hole locations shown today varied from “just off” to “way off” – we learned quickly to check with your own tools. You see many signs along the ESA areas warning you against going in and to be aware of rattlesnakes. This was the first time I’d seen the sign (along the regional park on hole #2) to be aware of possible mountain lions!

I enjoy this layout. Recommended – just be ready to be patient with the greens for a while.
Played with my monthly club at (supposedly) 10am on Saturday, 5/20/17 – it was clear and hot with little wind. I’d seen recent reviews of the course and I guess expected a little more than I got. I know they had damage from the rains earlier this year, but most other courses in SoCal have shown improved conditions as a result of the rains. Maybe the overall steeper topography here minimized the potential for turf improvement.

We found the course fairly dry and firm, generally in good shape but with some challenging conditions. Greens were generally pretty good – most were very firm and rolled pretty well at medium-fast speeds. These greens seem to me to have a lot of very subtle movement and awkward slopes that defy what your eye tells you. [More likely, it’s just the state of my putting game!] While the practice green had some very thin brown areas, I don’t remember seeing any on the on-course greens. We didn’t see very many old or new ballmarks. Green #9 was more receptive than most of the others. Fairways were firm and coverage ranged from fairly lush to thin to scattered bare areas. Rough was generally cut very short and easily playable, but there are scattered patches of unmowed areas where balls would vanish. Sand was very good – all had a good playing layer over a semi-firm base, and greenside traps with plenty of playing layer. Tees (we played white) were overall pretty poor – some were sloping, and most of the par-3 tees were not only pretty torn up but also internally very uneven, with a rolling lumpiness that made finding a level area difficult.

The range has about 20 stations on pretty good mats. Only one green for putting and chipping – no practice bunker. Plenty of water available on this hot day. Restrooms OK.

We had a 10-group tournament (the “Hackers” – bad omen!) go out directly ahead of us. Carts were stacked up on the first tee like cordwood. They went off late and so did we. Our 10am start was actually 1040; then the round was just under 6 hours. Staff is basically unconcerned – the only “marshall” we saw all day was stationed on #9 tee to sell charity donations for First Tee. And you wonder why MM has such a reputation for slow play!

There are several course features that I think could be altered to improve pace and playability, and they aren’t difficult. Using a targeted maintenance approach would address many of these problem areas. Many holes have severe slopes here, and with the thin/firm fairways even good shots can easily run off into difficulty. Examples are holes 12 and 14. The fairways slope steeply to the right off the hillside, and with the firm, dry short rough the ball runs into trouble (also, the prevailing crosswind exacerbates that movement). If the rough were maintained in a more lush condition in these margin areas balls would not so easily be lost, improving pace. There are several other areas along course margins where leaving the rough a little longer would improve playability.

These types of measures would only work if employed in concert with greater staff involvement and better attitude toward improving the play pace.
Late to the GK review party after our GK Plays on Sunday afternoon, 5/7/16. Thanks to my playing partners - steady influence Lee, and fun newcomers Mitch and Jen – for an enjoyable time. The round was rather subdued for me due to the whacky weather – intermittent mostly annoying rain, overcast skies, and clouds obscuring the nearby mountains gave the course a somewhat drab low-light look with little contrast. Very different from the sharper color contrasts of fairway/rough/sand/water you’d see in the normal bright sunshine.

Greens were small, sloping, and very firm – we rarely saw a ballmark. I noted that we saw the same type of green complex several times going through the round (we started on hole #1) – the shape of the green on #1 was echoed on #7, then #10, then #12, then #16, then #17. Reverse-mirror images of those green shapes showed up on #3, then #13, then #18. The only differentiation was a mix of traps, swales, and hazards in different permutations. On those holes mentioned, pin locations in the “rear” position revealed very narrow green segments where closely-controlled pitches were necessary.

We had good lies in the fairways and short rough. I like the use of the entry/exit gate system to control cart damage in fairways and rough margins. Fairway traps were firm and easy to hit from – the greenside bunkers I was in were in similar shape, making controlled recoveries more difficult. Shot(s) of the day came from Mitch on the short par-5 #11 – after bombing a drive, he hit his second into the right greenside bunker. He then hit a well-controlled blast that rolled across the sloping-away green just into the second cut. Channeling Phil Mickelson, he removed the pin and proceeded to hole a wedge chip for a sandie birdie without touching his putter!

Tees were wide and level. The good interactive GPS that was a surprise, since I don’t think they offered these when we played the Stadium Course a couple years ago. Distance to the MOG, not the flag, was given. I think the course could use some punching up after 30 years, with some fairly minor tweaks to help set the holes apart and be more individually memorable. Holes #8 and #15 are the ones that really stand out for me, due to their unique individual difficulties.

Enjoyed the course, the company, and the GK family.
This round was a warmup for the GK Plays at PGA West – thanks to GKer abbacat for the invite to join her, colmcd, and wsbell57 at 9:04 am Sunday on a cool, occasionally sunny morning with light breezes. She had some Underpar vouchers so the round with cart was only $20. My first time here – the Pebble course is an 18-hole par-3 track (with one short par-4) adjacent to the longer Boulder course. Conditioning was generally the same quality as most other courses in the PS area, with large level tees, lots of grass leading up to greens that gave good lies, and fairly small slopy greens. No real rough, no trees, and water only on #18. There are no bunkers on the course other than around hole #18 (the most interesting and championship-like hole), with other sandy waste areas wide of some fairways, and the routing crosses the Whitewater River channel a couple times. Being adjacent to the river basin means the course is generally pretty flat, with any changes in elevation mainly from pushing up tee and green pads.

Everything was green and in good condition. Greens were pretty firm and barely showed a ballmark, so you had to play for release. They rolled nicely at medium-fast speed. Since it’s a par-3 course, there’s lots of need for divot mix on the tees, but we quickly ran short after the first few holes, and there were no refills available, and no ranger. No cart girl this morning, and hole #9 doesn’t return to the clubhouse. Water was available, but it wouldn’t be enough during the hot summer months. There’s a simple Proshot GPS that gives a few distances only.

We played deliberately in about 3 hours, with a couple twosomes playing through. This is a good course for working on mid-irons and wedges, and getting the feel of the “every putt breaks toward the Salton Sea” of golf in Palm Springs. Thanks to my partners for an enjoyable round.
First time back here in 7 years – I had purchased an Underpar certificate for 2 players, with unlimited golf that day. I didn’t get a response on my Meet-Play post, so I showed up about 1015 on Wednesday, 5/3/17, on a warm, sunny day with light breezes. The course was very uncrowded when I arrived – I went off at my own pace playing the Blues (6,235/70.6/126) as a riding single at 1045, never hurried and occasionally played 2 balls, finishing in ~3.5 hr.
I looked back at my review of CMR posted 8/17/10 – most of those comments are still applicable. I’ve reproduced the main points from that earlier review below, with updates and comments from my round yesterday.

>(from August 2010) “I found a course that I think would be a Tier 1 venue with the appropriate TLC and resources dedicated. This is a mature course with a wonderful combination of challenging terrain; variety of holes; challenging, sloping greens; attractive wetlands and water features; and many forced carries. The course is 25 years old next year [now 30+] and deserves better than its current condition – it’s a Ron Fream design (Desert Falls, Redhawk [Temecula], Links at River Lakes Ranch in SoCal) that needs some capital input to upgrade its conditioning and restore its infrastructure.<

I still think this course is a stern but fun and interesting test, and could be a “must-play” venue if resources were dedicated to making it a wanted destination. The course was fairly narrow to begin with, and now the turf reduction has put an even greater premium on hitting your lines and being on the fairways. Since my last visit, the course implemented a significant turf reduction and maintenance cost-saving program. The turf reduction includes covering some of those areas adjacent to fairways and tees with bark/stringy mulch, but it’s hardpan further out, and a lot of it. Trees have been removed in many areas. Most rough areas have been converted to mulch/hardpan – some of the hardpan areas are immediately adjacent to playing areas and really need to be mulched – for example, immediately right of the #9 green (miss the green by 3 yards and you’re almost in an unplayable lie, for example), and left of #12 green, where a shot only a few yards offline runs quickly away down a slope to ????

It seems that many trees removed since my last visit, consistent with the turf reduction program – most evident to me were on the left of the tee shot on #8, and behind #12 green – in both cases I remember many more trees.

>(from August 2010) “I found a “LA County” level of conditioning; fairways and greens appear to have a mix of grasses and looks, but overall the course was medium-firm, fairly fast, and visually attractive. The course plays across many arroyos, streams, and natural areas. The holes are frequently well separated – this would be a very difficult course to walk with all distances and slopes involved. The early holes play downhill on each nine, with the middle holes of each nine less sloped, and both sides climb steeply to the finish over last few holes. Memorable holes included the 5th, a wonderful island-fairway par 5, where you hit over a wildly vegetated arroyo to the island fairway, then again over the arroyo uphill to a deep narrow plateau green guarded by deep traps; the 6th, a brutal long uphill par 3 over a row of cross bunkers; and the 2nd shot on the par-4 14th (the 1 handicap) – downhill over a wide creek bed to a sloping, shallow green.<

Conditioning has improved. I’m sure the winter rains in 2017 contributed to the improvement in conditions. The previous issues with fairway/rough dryness and tight lies were nowhere evident. Hole #5 is still my favorite hole – the drive is an all-or-nothing 175-yd carry from the blue tees, and there’s no bailout area for any tee– so you just have to get it to the fairway. (There is a drop zone available.) After being in good position off the tee on that island fairway, it only took me five(!) tries to get over the second wetland area to the approach fairway!!! [No, it’s not that tough – just me trying with little success to hit my 3-wood off the fairway – LOL!]

>(from August 2010) “The steep uphill-downhill definitely affected club selection; the course offers medium small greens, many perched, and many uphill, with undulations, tiers, greens with distinct lobes; greens were medium fast, especially downhill. Shots to the greens need to be precise. The 9th and 18th holes play to narrow fairways and deep narrow greens, both steeply uphill all the way, with 18 into the teeth of a pretty good wind. I found very thin, dry fairways and rough (sprinklers on while we were on the 7th hole at 9:30AM).<

Greens today were fairly firm but receptive to good shots; they rolled medium-fast to fast, especially downhill(!). There were quite a few unfilled divots in the fairways, but I saw very few old or unfixed ballmarks on the greens. None of the fairways were closed off from cart traffic. I do think the fairways and rough areas (and transitions back to the cart paths) would benefit from a “gate”-type system to better control entry and egress and cut down on gratuitous cart damage. Bunkers were bad! Traps had a thin layer over a firm packed base – they very difficult to play from. Some traps have very significant side slopes (front center trap on #6!!!), where balls all funnel into a center groove – this area gets a lot of play, and (shocker!) no raking, so lies wind up being totally unplayable. The many new tee boxes are large, level, mostly well-grassed, and attractive – some have been relocated from earlier spots to opposite sides of the hole corridor, affecting sight and play lines.

>(from August 2010) “The detailed scorecard has hole drawings and notes available. There’s an OK GPS in the cart, with hole pictures and distances. A yardage book is also available.<

There are white 150-yd posts on each side of the fairway; a yardage book is still available. Carts now have a good-quality VISAGE GPS system. For whatever reason, almost all the pins were set on the front-to-back centerline of the greens, so I wasn’t able to determine if the GPS gave the actual pin location, or just the appropriate zone (F/M/B) in the graphic. That determination was also complicated by the fact that most of the greens at CMR are fairly small, so it wouldn’t be obvious if the indicated position was slightly off. Based on my experience with other VISAGE systems, it likely shows section information only. There were still lots of messages showing up on the GPS screen, but many just disappeared if you ignored them. And many of the cart directions provided were helpful in locating the widely-separated holes and tees.

>(from August 2010) “Regarding my infrastructure comment: the trees on the course have had a chance to mature and grow, but now tree roots are pushing up paths throughout the course, making for rough rides. The bathroom on 15th tee looked scary; I don’t remember one on the front, but it was probably there.”<

Cart paths still need attention. There are also many “new” gravel paths; some need grading. The ‘Quonset hut tunnels’ at road/hill under-crossings especially need grading (and lights). I saw the bathroom on the front 9 this time– it’s in an interesting position … it’s in the middle of hole #5, on the island fairway portion of the hole! So take a break after you hit your second shot - LOL!

No cart girl or ranger today. Plenty of drinking water still available. The sand bottle refill rack next to #9 green was empty. Trash cans and ball washers on each hole are at the black tee, so don’t miss them as you go by – most of the ballwashers are decorated with bird poop on the handle! Saw a large coyote on hole #9 twice – once next to the green/clubhouse as I went out, and again when it ran past me on the 9th tee.

I like the challenges of this course and it’s great to see conditions much improved since my last visit. I look forward to getting back here soon (and taking another crack at hole #5!).
Had a great time at Boulder Oaks on a sunny, warm and windy day on Sunday afternoon, 4/23/17 – a GK Plays outing and I was lucky to be paired with dcricket and rstang06, and their son mdkaplan90 - always a pleasure to see those guys. This course had recently undergone a significant renovation and rerouting, and I had never played the old layout. I’d seen some iffy reviews from other GKers on the quirky new setup, and the renovated yardage (<5,800 yards) was a little below what I’d normally go for, but the opportunity to get with other GKers was too good to pass up.

We had a noon shotgun start and I was lucky to get paired with veterans of the revised layout (for tips on play lines and green slopes) and to start on some of the less-tricky holes (we started on the short par 5 #3, followed by the flat par-3 #4) – starting in the wrong place here could quickly put a dent in your score and your enthusiasm. The course is very slopy and the wind is a significant factor, as many fairways and hitting lanes are narrow, wind can quickly blow you offline and affect distances, and seemingly good shots can quickly catch slopes into trouble. There are blind tee shots on several holes - repeated plays are definitely necessary to get the correct hitting lines and where to position your ball in fairways and on greens.

Some of the greens remain from the earlier course configuration, and others are newly constructed. As far as I could tell, most of the older greens had better turf coverage and held shots, while some newer greens were thinner, firmer, and didn’t hold as well. All the greens are very slopy, with significant runouts on downhill downgrain putts, and position is key to being able to comfortably putt to the hole, as most greens have a lot of subtle movement. Separate from the new/old situation, green speeds seemed to be inconsistent through the course, and none of our group had a good putting day. [The practice green was very smooth and consistent, resulting in a lot of jarring confusion once we got out on the course greens.] All greens had a lot of unrepaired ballmarks, with the front of green #18 being especially bad.

Fairways were in generally good condition and lies were good. But most of the fairways are pretty narrow, and players need to be aware of danger areas as they go along. In many cases adjacent holes are very close, and there’s some danger involved with balls flying offline into other playing areas. Lots of unfilled divots and we were very busy with the sand bottles. Most of the tees are fairly new and level, well-turfed, and playable. Par-3 tees were pretty torn up, especially the black and blue boxes on #13. Traps were generally pretty firm with only a thin playing layer.

Generally enough water available on the course, although the water jug on #5 tee was empty at 1230pm. Cart paths are in need of some serious work to repair damage and simplify the cart routing – many newer gravel paths need some grading and dust suppression. Areas beyond the rough/mulch areas are primarily hardpan/crushed granite, with lots of new plantings trying to take hold. These granite areas need additional cover and routing protection from rogue cart traffic to mature and improve appearance. The effect of recent heavy rains is evident from widespread runoff damage/erosion in these areas. No cart girl or ranger today. There is no driving range.

The clubhouse is older, left over from the country club, but with a friendly vibe from the staff. The grounds surrounding the clubhouse, and scattered areas of the course interior and surrounds, need a cash infusion and lots of TLC for a cleaner more appealing look.

The course is pretty unique and challenging in its conditions. I don’t think I would travel down to Escondido again just to play here. Unless Donna and Willie called again!
Had a great time with the GK Gurus here at 11am on Wednesday, 4/19/17, on a mostly sunny, breezy warm day. Thanks to GKers gary00, leef2020, and Itslikeimsayin for an enjoyable day – Orange County heading down to San Marcos for the round. I played this course only once, around 20 years ago, and it seems like it’s really filled in in terms of the lushness of the vegetation in the creeks and hazards – of course, some of this may be related to the rain the past couple months. When you are on the holes bordered by the creek or heavier vegetation, the wind is almost completely blocked out – away from the creek or on the higher elevation holes the wind is much more of a factor.

We arrived in time to warm up but found the range closed for some type of grading. No practice bunker or chipping green unless it’s up by the range. The putting green was crowded as the course was pretty stacked up with foursomes going out in the hour ahead of our time, but the starter was friendly and worked to get us out ASAP after our foursome was complete. As they were crowded, the pace on the front nine was 2.5 hr, and not a lot better on the back. Pro shop was apologetic about the range availability and threw in a yardage book (ordinarily $15 ??!! – must be gold-laminated). Newer carts are basic but comfortable; no ball washer or cooler, but a very nice VISAGE GPS system that is interactive. Good graphics on the GPS, but it doesn’t tell you where other carts are, which would have been useful on a couple holes with blind shots or hidden areas beyond downslopes. Also, the pin position is shown as front/middle/back (the course uses that rotation), but often doesn’t indicate when pins are pushed well to the side of a middle line.

The putting green didn’t have much slope to it, and was a little fuzzy and bumpy – I think the on-course greens were a little quicker. The course overall was pretty wet and soft when we started, and dried out some as the round progressed. Early on the fairways were fairly wet and soft, getting firmer/drier as the day progressed. Even so, we encountered quite a few areas during the round with apparent sprinkler/drainage issues – these areas were very soft and wet, in some cases being muddy/mushy and a challenge to play from. Alternately, we encountered many thin/dry area in fairways and rough, with almost no cover vegetation. The course doesn’t play very long, but most holes have hazards along one side or are crossed by drainage structures, and the course is in hilly terrain with a lot of mounding and sloped fairways. I recall from my only previous round here that green approaches were heavily watered and soft at that time, as well.

Greens were generally in good condition – no bare spots, generally good turf conditions (some thinner areas), and rolled at medium to medium-fast speeds. They varied in firmness throughout the round, with some accepting shots well and others being firmer and less accepting. Most greens are pitched from back to front, some more steeply than others, and most are reasonably flat, with only scattered tiering and occasional low bowls. Many greens are fronted by steep rises above the fairway leading up to them, and with the wet/soft conditions that makes run-on approaches more difficult.

Fairways generally gave good lies, although we saw scattered wet or bare areas. Many fairways are significantly narrowed by traps or mounding/rough-cutting at the outer limits of good tee shots – hitting past these areas frequently encountered deeper rough, steeper slopes, and significant downslopes into runoff drainage areas. Several fairways, especially on the front nine, could slope significantly toward the vegetated hazards, so you need to be wary as you choose your hitting line. Rough was cut fairly short and very playable, although drainage margins could be much more lush and problematic. We saw lots of old unfilled divots in fairways and rough – there’s a refill rack for sand bottles on the #10 tee, and we used them liberally all day.

Tees were generally level and gave ample playing room. There are several boxes on each hole – some boxes have monuments/plates corresponding to card yardages, and even a picture of the hole features. But I only saw this on 2 or 3 holes – maybe I missed them, or maybe they were a relic of the course opening, and have slowly vanished. Traps were marginal – the fairway bunker on #18 was pretty firm with a thin crusty top layer (OK playability), but the greenside bunkers I was in had thin coverage over a wet heavy base, and you didn’t have much to work with. My playing partner said a couple of greenside traps he was in had deep soft sand – the opposite of my experience. With the rising approaches to semi-plateau greens, some of the fronting bunkers are very deep, with steep faces between you and the greens.

First tee is pretty noisy with driveway, parking lot, putting green, and clubhouse in the immediate proimity. No cart girl - there's a snack bar at the turn. Bathroom on the back nine is a port-o-pottie. Adequate water available. No ranger. Overall a fun day with other GKers, with pretty good course conditions. Recommended with a good price.
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