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It's been 14 years since my last visit to Shorecliffs, which I recall being the day with the single largest accumulation of goose poop in recorded history. 14 years later, no goose poop!

First, the obvious, the course has lost two holes to landslide, and has turned two Par 5s into two 4s and two 3s for an 18 hole course of max 5700 yards. The reported strength of Shorecliffs are the greens, unfortunately they were punched and sandy today, and did not roll straight.

But, shocking myself, I enjoyed the day. I had low expectations. OK, well below low. But the course was still a decent way to get out and hit the ball around. Of course, it didn't hurt that after a GolfNow Hot Deal and a $10 GolfNow reward, I played 18 for less than a large range bucket.

I'd like to see them sell off a few holes and turn the remaining land into a fun 4000-5000 yard course a la Casta Del Sol, Goat Hill, etc.
8 Likes.
Played 4/11. Showed up at 8:00 hoping for a 4.5 hour round. Immediately joined up with another single and off we went. Did not see another golfer until #13, when a twosome two holes ahead came back to look for a missing, and I kid you not, tee! OK, it was a special designed tee with string and magnet. Unfortunately, it wasn't there, so they headed off and we didn't see them again until 18 green. Our twosome made it around in just over 3 hours.

I haven't been here in 2 years, and there are changes. Some turf reduction areas to save water are obvious. The rough is being ignored, but that is normal these days. Fairways are OK, they have grass, but it is very short and the ground is very hard. I was getting a pretty painful bounce on iron shots, like hitting off the worst range mats. Great for driver roll, awful for wedges.

Greens were nice. Lots of ballmarks, but the greens rolled smooth. Aeration next week - be warned.

I really noticed the growth of the wild areas - it really has tightened up the course.

In all, still a great layout, and in good enough condition to keep me coming back.
6 Likes.
Since a 2nd round at Rams Hill would have been a little slow, I decided to try out De Anza for a 3/25 round. What a pleasant surprise this course is!

The greens are quite different from RH. Both are in great condition, but while RH is medium soft, fast and tricky, De Anza is firm and slow, and generally little break. If you have the speed down, you can attack these greens.

The course layout is surprisingly more parkland than desert course. The rough is tough. Playing solo, I lots a few balls in the rough not far from the fairway. Grass is thick and the ball settles down low. Lots of trees off the fairway, and pretty narrow fairways, so you often need to hack low shots from the thick rough making recovery difficult.

Borrego Springs has a nice 1-2-3 punch in Rams Hill, Borrego Springs and de Anza CC. Three really different golf courses, but all nice in their own ways.
11 Likes.
Played Rams Hill on 3/25. Went out right behind the Men's Club. The starter said we'd have a hard time keeping up with them. Not true, they were quite deliberate. But we still made it around in 4:30, so not bad.

Course is in it's usual great shape. There are a few rough spots on some greens, but those are mostly on the edges and don't come into play near a hole. Tee boxes, fairways & sand all fabulous.

Still one of my all time favorite courses. Was hoping to get in a replay, but it would have been right behind 5 or 6 foursomes including high school teams, so I decided to give De Anza a shot for the 2nd round.
12 Likes.
Played 3/13. After looking at my tracker spreadsheet and how I have done here, something dawned on me....this is a tough course to score on. Lots of elevation to deal with, Lots of odd lies even in fairways, and the tee boxes evens add some lie challenges. The greens are usually in good shape, but I don't see lots of putts made here.

No complaints about condition today, although everything was really soft. No roll on drives, and even long shots into the greens barely move upon landing. I did not lots of soft sand in the two bunkers that I was in, so it looks like they have been taking good care of them.

Thumbs up for SJH. And let me know if you score well here, I sure don't, and I don't recall playing with anyone here that scored well.
8 Likes.
Played RSJ on 1/30. Tee boxes and greens were heavily sanded, but generally in good playable shape. Otherwise, standard RSJ conditions, very spotty in many areas. Course was packed mid-week, but pace of play was still decent at 4:30.

But still a rare bargain course in OC that is a fun play.
6 Likes.
Played Champions on 12/19/18 as I found a nice deal on GolfNow. Booked as a single joining two others at 12:16, but I went to the starter at 11:45 and he said go ahead, so I went off as a single.

Beautiful day in Carlsbad. Teed off at 11:50. 10 minutes later as I addressed my birdie putt, somebody in the clubhouse must have been watching me as they started ringing the bells in the bell tower as my putt found the bottom of the cup. The celebratory 12 bells were appreciated! I guess they must do that for everyone that birdies #1, as I usually bogey that hole. For that alone, the staff gets a perfect rating!

The course is in great winter shape. Greens are almost perfect. Good coverage in the fairways and rough. Minor negatives - I did find thin spots in a couple of bunkers, and there are quite a few areas marked off as under repair. Quite a few cart path only spots as well. Still, very very little to complain about here, the course is in great shape.

Raced around 12 holes as a single, finally catching and joining a twosome on #13. Still finished the round in just over 3 hours.

Highly recommended.

Perhaps the most rare, amazing and incredible thing happened though. Even rarer than a Hole-In-One. I successfully used a GolfNow $10 Rewards coupon! Shocking! If you haven't tried to use one of these, there are a few caveats:
1. Must be booked at least 24 hours in advance
2. Can only be used on Hot Deal tee times after 12:00pm
3. Cannot be used on most Hot Deal tee times that anyone would want
4. Can only be used on the 3rd Wednesday of the month
5. Cannot be used by people named Johnny, Gary, Matt, or Bud. Or anyone from Kansas.
6. "Purchase Tee Time" button must be clicked while lifting your left foot off the ground.
7. Hot Deal times are subject to random "deal no longer available" message
Amazingly enough, everything worked for me this time. Who needs a stupid hole-in-one anyway?
14 Likes.
Played CrossCreek on 12/3/18, my first time out here in 11 years. Still a great course layout in an awesome location. Coyotes everywhere, and the howling show they put on in an amphitheater setting on the back 9 was something I will remember.

As for the course, age is taking it's toll on the edges of the course. The greens are excellent, the fairways are decent, but the rough is very inconsistent. It looks like a course that it past it's prime, and the dry natural areas are starting to encroach and impact the rough.

10 years ago this was one of my favorites. If I was local, I'd still play here as the layout and the location is special. But I don't think I'll make the >1 hour drive to play here again for a while.
7 Likes.
Played Maderas a couple of times over the last few weeks. This is about as good as public golf gets. Great facilities and staff.

Course is a blast. Great condition all around, except for a few tee boxes. Many of the holes have multiple small tee boxes built into hillsides and other locales that must be challenging to maintain, and some of them are running a bit rough right now. But it is still better than most other places.

Greens are beautiful, smooth and quick. Fairways have nice coverage. Rough is generally very good.

Highly recommended.
7 Likes.
Played DCGC on 10/29/18. One of my playing partners described it as 18 holes like the back 9 at Tijeras Creek - which is a good description. It has all the wow factor of the Tijeras back 9, but with a little less danger. Really fun and challenging layout. Several greens have little fingers of the green with severe elevation changes, and if the pins are there it is a nightmare.

Conditions are really nice. Greens are great shape and really fast. Fairways and rough are 95% great, with some rare rough patches. Tee boxes are mostly great, but a few have some uneven footing.

Excellent practice facilities. One of the few 18 hole country clubs that I would consider joining if I lived closer - nice course, but not insanely difficult.

Highly recommended!
10 Likes.
Played CDS on 10/24. High marks for the greens - beautiful, smooth, soft, near perfect. The rest of the course is acceptable for a Par 3/4 course. Great place to go out and practice your irons and short game.

However, I cannot for the life of me figure out why it takes 4 hours for a 3600 yard course when it is all twosomes and threesomes. A 3 group wait on #10 tee? Why? Pick up the pace people!
8 Likes.
Played Eagle Falls on 9/19/18. They will be shutting down in October for the usual fall maintenance. Too bad, because this course is in amazing condition. What a hidden gem. Other than the distant I-10 noise (which I rarely noticed), there is nothing else here.

Great course. Amazing conditions. Nice staff. Amazing bargain.

Highest recommendation.
14 Likes.
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