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Played here, 1st time, on Sunday 9/24/17.

Have been exploring more courses in the area lately, and decided to given RSJ a try.

Paid $67 online for 830am Sunday. Smallest bucket of balls was $10, hit from mats to a field of dirt, with a couple of flags for targets. On scale of 1-10, rate the practice area a 3. One large putting green near 9 and 18 greens. Did not see a chipping area.

Friendly starter and staff inside Proshop. Started as a single but joined 3 others on 6th hole when pace bogged down.

Course is near a few busy streets in Irvine so, don't expect a quiet and peaceful round, although not noticeable on every hole.

Fairways were average, very wet in spots, but playable. Spotty in areas as well. Not a great deal of definition from fairway to rough. One of the trickiest aspects of this layout, especially first time around, were the sight lines from tee. I recall at least 8 tee shots which were difficult to pick a line. Unsure about which way the hole moved when there was any bend at all. The guys I played with said the same thing. (Also playing for first time). # 14 in particular is poorly designed hole which puts players in fairway in jeopardy from shots from group behind. No way to know players are in fairway below, when teeing off of 14th.

Greens average to good. A few crazy designed greens, with big bowls and sideboards, which with course knowledge and pin placement, could really change your aim point from fairway. Rolled pretty consistently slow / medium pace, and a bit on bumpy side.

Bunkers had a lot of sand in them...So much that if you took half the volume out and added to the bunkers at Oak Quarry, you'd have good bunkers at both courses. However, rather have a little too much sand than not enough.

As mentioned at the top, so many tee shots with confusing site lines make for a frustrating day, if first time there, but won't be an issue the next time, if you choose to tackle again.

Although reasonably priced for OC, green fees didn't quite match up to playing experience and course conditions, but still had a good time out there.
1 Like.
Played here (first time...I think) on Sunday 8/27.

I say first time, but I may have been here many, many years ago. Some of the holes looked familiar, but very unusual for me to forget a golf course I've played.

Anyway, wanted to try something different and recent reviews were good, especially in relation to the greens.

There is a driving range with lots of fun targets to shoot at (goal posts, giant dartboard, and an old van) but only, somewhat unforgiving mats on this day. $8 small bucket (not included in green fee).

Very good service from Pro Shop and starter. They call your name to on PA to the tee, which I like, to avoid confusion there.

I found tee boxes to be in good to excellent condition. Played back (Blue) tees at 6317 yards, which is the longest this course will play. I noticed most players on this particular day were playing from White, so maybe due to play on that set, tee conditions may vary.

Fairways were spotty. Found a few bad, thin lies within fairway, and off fairway was kind of mixed bag as well. Some rough (kikuyu) was quite thick and juicy, and tough to play from. Little better chances than a coin flip on quality of lie in fairway, but nothing to be overly critical about.

Greens were very green, lush, smooth and had great coverage. The highlight of the course. As nice as they looked, they were quite soft and a little on the slow side. Needed to take a pretty good swat at the ball if outside of 20 feet or so. Subtle breaks which are sometimes tough to see. Mostly large greens and fairly flat.

Layout is not incredibly interesting, but some local knowledge is helpful. Blind, dogleg left, downhill par 5, 6th, comes to mind. Even a decent tee shot over the left elbow can go a long ways down hill, where a well struck tee shot down the middle could run into OB. (5) par 3's and (4) par 5's, for a par 71. Kind of weird 3,4,3,5,3 finish, but overall, a fun course. Will try again some time.

Kind of a cool, casual vibe here. Easy to get to from 5 freeway, but aside from a little traffic noise on a few holes, felt like I was away from the noise and crowds you get at times in OC. Very nice open air bar and restaurant. Something like 25 50" flat screens, good drinks and food. Enjoy.
12 Likes.
Played here, for first time, Friday 7/21, as part of my back to back with the GK group on Saturday, at Yocha Dehe.

Appropriately priced, I played for 80$ for noon Friday tee time.

Nice grass driving range, large practice green and a decent short game area as well. Very nice property in the town of Copperopolis, a long way from any significant towns, in the foothills of the Sierra Madre range. Homes around the course, but not in play anywhere, on large lots. The resort offers stay and play packages in bungalow / cottages near the clubhouse and first fairway. Looks like a great place for a long weekend with a few couples or buddy trip.

Nice clubhouse, small-ish proshop, and a very cool patio / bar overlooking the 9th green.

Very scenic course, through rolling hills and oak trees, a good amount of elevation change (especially on the back nine).

Conditions were excellent and while I wouldn't normally compare one course to another course, since I played Yocha Dehe the very next day, I can say that Saddle Creek was in a little better condition. A little more lush, well covered and healthy fairways, and greens were almost perfect. Medium firmness and very clean. Rolled very well although were only medium fast. Bunkers well maintained and good fill.

A couple a soft areas in fairways, due to excess watering I assumed, but prefer the lush green over little thin and dry.

Very nice layout, I preferred the front a little better. More trees and interesting holes 1-9, than 10-18, but very challenging throughout. Water in play on 3 holes on front 9, only one with water in play on back. The elevation changes on back nine, made for a tougher half. More subtle elevation changes on front.

Customer service was excellent throughout. Even though the property has a local, retirement community feel to it (lots of members and residents out on this day), I received the same top shelf service, all day, as if I were a member or resident. Very good food in the restaurant as well.

Marshalls out on the course kept a good pace going and beverage cart came around 4 times, even with a 40 player shotgun event out in front of us.

Perhaps my favorite customer service feature was having a staff member offer ice cold towels to all players, on the course. They drove around in the same way a beverage cart would, against traffic and offered the cold towels and water. Course also had water stations on every other hole, to ensure you kept hydrated.

Highly recommend, and would consider the stay and play option given the location. Course has plenty of challenge and interest to play a couple of times in consecutive days.
9 Likes.
First time here, played Saturday morning 6/10/17.

59$ rate for 830 Saturday with cart. good start.

Very nice grass driving range, another plus.

Surprisingly, virtually no traffic on the course, so I had to go at it alone, no an issue. Played behind a 3 ball and took my time, as no one following me. Given first time here, allowed me to hit a few extra shots and explore. Plus # 3.

Fairways were decent. I found a good number of fairways, and all were a little on the firm / thin side. Very little cushion under the ball, but didn't run out much either. Cool, and a little light rain may have affected.

Greens were nearly perfect. Smooth, firm but holding pretty well, and rolled very nicely. Plus # 4. The greens themselves have a lot of subtle (and some not so subtle) wrinkles. Seemed to move much more than expected when ball slowed down. But overall, excellent.

Bunkers I found were good, but a little hard in spots, especially close to the edges, but very playable.

I enjoyed the layout. A few holes near the 10 freeway are a bit distracting, but nothing too serious. Routing is such that a few holes run adjacent to others but not so close that you run into another, and most are nicely confined, stand alone holes.

The most memorable aspect of the course, was the many bunkers, mounds, and collection areas around the greens. All greens are very well protected. Slight misses can leave you with a challenging side, up, or downhill chip. A lot of pins are hidden by the mounding, making for tough approach shots when only 1/2 to 2/3 of flag is visible.

As noted in previous reviews: No GPS or yardage books, so first time out can be challenging. I used the VPAR app on my phone which worked quite well. No ambulance on the card (aka beer cart), and snack shop at turn closed. These were the only negatives.

I will be back to take another run at this enjoyable track.
Recommend.
12 Likes.
Played here for first time, Saturday 5/27/17.

Landed here after finding a $45 Saturday 745am tee time online. Called Pro Shop to be sure everything was in order as I was surprised to find such a reasonable price. They assured me course conditions were great, and they were right.

Conditions were excellent. Tee boxes level with very good coverage.

Fairways, while just a bit firm and thin, were also very good. Good coverage and green throughout.

Greens were also excellent. Very smooth, rolling beautifully. Minimal ball mark damage, and a well defined fringe / first cut, surrounded by a very nicely manicured and lush 2nd cut. Most greens are receptive and relatively flat. There are a couple tiered greens, #12 has a huge bowl on lower right which made for a very gettable pin location.

Layout is unspectacular but well done and great views of mountains throughout. Very wide fairways (widest landing areas, in some cases, that I can recall of any course in the area.) Greens are well protected with bunkers, and the last 3, a par 4, 3, and then a good risk / reward par 5, are perhaps the toughest on the course. Challenging finish.

Not a lot of traffic on the course. Very nice and large restaurant with a lot of outdoor seating, which was pretty full when we arrived. Appears to be a popular spot with the locals. Has a classic '50's vibe throughout.

One negative was lack of driving range. Only a handful of hitting stations, off of a very hard surface, into a net. However, nice chipping a putting areas.

Enjoyed the round, feels like a course which can yield a good score.
13 Likes.
Played here Friday 5/26/17.

One of the top rated par 3 courses in America, and every time I visit, it's hard for me to imagine there are other par 3 courses any better. The fact there are spectacular views of the Pacific ocean and Catalina island from every spot on the course, makes it that much more enjoyable, but conditions are also excellent.

The course is also a good test. Great bunkering all around, undulating greens of all shapes and sizes, and can be set up to be quite difficult when pins are on edges. Holes varied in length from 100 - 170 yards on this day. If breeze is coming off the ocean, can add to club selection by full club.

All tee boxes were near perfect. We were first out at 730, so benefited from that, but with large teeing areas, very easy to move tees around to ensure good, lush coverage. Each tee box includes a laser range finder, in the event you don't carry one. Very nice feature. Benches on each green to allow you to sit back and enjoy the view. No issues from my perspective if you have to wait. On this day we did not, and went around (3) times.

Greens were smooth, a little on firm side, but I'll use the common comment seen here often: "Firm greens but held well struck shots". Very smooth, a few ball mark issues, but clear the course makes attempts to smooth out unrepaired marks. Roll nicely and are fast. Some deceiving tilt in the greens and they don't always roll directly towards ocean, but there was some pull towards the water.

Bunkers were full and deep, with soft sand. I had a couple of fried eggs that were surprisingly easy to pop out, but bunkers do penalize bad shots.

Nice rolling contours from tee to green, and some short be kind of steep transition areas, which give you a decent aerobic workout, especially if you walk it (3) times.

Very professional and friendly service all around. Even had a chance to talk to the bird control gut who travels around the grounds in a cart with a German short hair pointer, and a Southwest Harris Hawk, which he has trained to keep the gulls and coots away. Very interesting to say the least...

No carts allowed, only walking with pull carts which are available to rent. A little on the pricey side for a par 3 course. We paid $54, then $25 for replays, but in my opinion, worth the money.

Enjoy, highly recommend.
12 Likes.
Played here Wednesday 5/24/17.

Unfortunately, the previous review is still applicable.

While fairways were in very good shape, the greens were is poor condition. Many bare or damaged areas on vast majority (14 o 15) of the greens. In spots where there was good coverage, still slow an bumpy. Very disappointing.

Bunkers I played out of (3) greenside and (1) fairway had good amount of sand and were very playable. Heard a couple of complaints from playing partners about lack of sand or wet, oatmeal like, sand.

As mentioned above no complaints with fairway conditions. Excellent Bermuda coverage, slightly dry in a couple spots.

Layout is challenging. Strategic bunkers which gobble up slight misses on approaches to greens. Found a lot of pins on edges behind bunkers on this day. No homes on the course (a positive).

Great customer service inside and out. Very nice restaurant and bar. Good food.

Attendant cleaning clubs behind 18 green assured us, without being prompted about the greens, that they would be better next time. That said, I think they need a couple of months to improve.
11 Likes.
Played here on a spectacular sunny Saturday morning, 5/13/17.

Wish I could say my play was spectacular as well, but that's ok. I noticed a couple of recent below average ratings for BG and wanted to see for myself. This is what I consider my home course.

My experience was very good today. Conditions overall were very good to excellent.

Blue Tee boxes had some evidence of fairly recent punch, but does not affect shots in any way. All level, with some divot damage, but again, no problem finding good teeing ground.

Fairways continue to fill in nicely. Where the kikuyu has filled in completely, very well maintained. Cut short, but with nice cushion. Areas under repair or in poor condition were minimal, and all were marked as GUR appropriately.

Bunkers I visited were a good shape, Good amount of sand all around, which has at times been an issue here. Today, no issues.

Greens were excellent. Medium firm and medium speed. Not as fast as I'm accustomed to here, but rolling well. A few were slightly bumpy in spots, but overall very good / excellent.

Always great customer service inside and out.

Driving range grass has come back and filled in well, as always great views, especially on Back 9. Very fun and challenging, but fair course.

Highly recommend.
15 Likes.
Played Monday May 8th. First time here. Overall impressions were excellent.
Very nice clubhouse, Pro Shop, Lockers and restaurant.

Practice area was very well maintained. Titleist practice balls were a nice perk. Good chipping area and large practice putting green. No issues at all.

Starter on first tee was very pleasant. Tees, ball markers, divot tools and full yardage book available at tee box. Another nice perk...

Tee boxes were excellent, level and lush. (played White tees on this day at about 6200 yards).

Fairways showed very minor remains of vericut, but did not affect play from fairways. Otherwise lush and just the right amount of firmness and cushion under the ball. A few spots on edges of fairways were soggy, perhaps from rain the night before.

Greens were medium fast and quite firm. Did not fix many ball marks, and greens were a little on dry side. Showing several very shallow brown ball marks, but didn't affect roll very much. (I don't completely understand the desert golf course maintenance and overseeing strategy, but I would imagine greens are usually greener and more receptive in prime winter season, and I probably caught the back end of prime conditions)

Visited a couple of bunkers and both had plenty of sand and good fill.

Layout was borderline spectacular, in my opinion. Nicely manicured throughout, clean water streams and water features. Ponds and small lakes as well, which come into play 12-13 holes. Important (more so than usual) to play away from water, because most holes with water in play, seemed to slope and pitch towards the water.
Nice landscaping...reminded me a little bit of Desert Willow Firecliff, but just a little cleaner around the edges. Great variety of holes which kept my interest throughout. Par 3 12th, over water, with water fall protecting one side and pond the other was a showstopper. Great photo op.

Also, loved the fact there are no homes on this course...Just you and the layout in front of you. Very nice change up from a lot of other course in the area.

Highly recommend, may be my favorite in the Palm Springs / Palm Desert area.


Service excellent inside and out.
15 Likes.
Played here Sunday 3/26.
Overall, excellent conditions and great service, inside and out.

First time here, so moved up a tee box to help with navigation. No GPS, but a good two side color layout card available with starter.

From my experience with Scottsdale / Phx golf, fairly typical layout. Very few holes are adjacent to others and waste areas are more in play than difficult rough conditions.

Fairways were excellent, beautiful emerald green coverage throughout. A good amount of mounding, which can create a few uneven lies, but mostly on the edges of fairways.

Greens were just a touch on firm side, but rolled beautifully. Very few unrepaired ball marks, although I did start early in the day (730am). Pin placements on this day (my only negative) were very difficult. 15 of 18 were on the very edge or corners of the green which made for very difficult shot making. Any slight miss was exacerbated.

Bunkers were very good, full of medium light brown sand. No issues with playability. Some are very deep so avoiding the is key.

While several holes looked similar, there are a couple very fun and interesting. I found back nine much more interesting than front. 13 (drivable par 4) and 17 (island green) a were memorable. Position from the tee important on both sides.

Phil's Grill (as in Mickelson) was a great place to enjoy the 19th hole routine. Spacious clubhouse, lockers, and practice area.

On-line tee times allow for 'last minute' discounts and will provide a significant savings if you can wait until just 2-3 days before booking.

Highly recommend.
17 Likes.
Played here on Friday March 3rd. 830am tee time.
Rehabbing from a left shoulder surgery in late November, so thought this would be a good way to start my way back in, slowly and comfortably.

The course is only 4400 yards, par 59, with 13 par 3's (ranging from 70-180 yards). Several 3's on the front 9 are in the 90-100 range so you'll get a good amount of practice with wedges. 3 of the 5 pars 4's are drivable, but still requires a precise shot of 260-275, as fairly well protected green entrances.

Overall, nice conditions. The tee boxes can be chewed up a bit, as so many shots from similar spots, but always found good turf to hit from. Some tee boxes were a little firm and thin, but makes for good practice if hitting off the grass.

Greens were surprisingly medium firm, but held good shots. Rolled quite well, smooth for the most part, but you may find a few unrepaired ball marks. Medium fast and a decent amount of tilt on many of the greens. presents good challenge.

Fairways on the par 4's were fine. Good coverage throughout.

Sand bunkers were excellent. good amount of medium soft sand, very playable.

Nice, cozy bar and restaurant (The Treehouse), with comfortable furniture inside and out. Fire pits and pretty good food, cold beer, and very friendly service.

Probably not a place the low handicap players will find that enjoyable, but very casual and fun track.

Recommend.
17 Likes.
Played here Monday 11/14/16. First time on the course and overall was impressed and enjoyed the trip around.

Prompt service at bag drop and in ProShop. All grass practice range in good shape, but grass was a little on the long, lush side. Coming thru maintenance, I'm sure it was just a byproduct of easing into mowing as grass matures. Was good practice for hitting out of the rough on the course. Nice chipping area adjacent.

Friendly and helpful starter at first tee. Paired up with one local who knew the course well, which helped with navigation. No cart path restrictions. GPS on board carts.

Tee boxes were in good shape. All flat, but chewed up on a couple of holes. Not an issue although to find good teeing ground.

Fairways were in good shape as well, not particularly lush, but very playable. I could imagine fairways will be in great shape in another few weeks, when surface fills in and is a little more dense with coverage.

Greens were medium slow and a little bumpy, but again very playable. A little adjustment required as you work your way around. Rolled true, but clearly not quite in peak season condition. Still very little to complain about once you get used to speed.

Bunkers I visited were robust. Very full, and could have used a little care, but again just part of the transition to the winter season.

Decent variety of par 4 & 5's. Solid group of par 3's and highlight of the round was 9 and 18. Two beautiful, tough holes to finish each side. Scenic course, lot of interesting birds in the water features throughout to keep you distracted, just enough, to make for a very enjoyable round.

Highly recommend.
11 Likes.
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