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Out with GK Gurus at Goose Creek Golf Club yesterday. Always fun to play with GKers. It’s been over a year since playing the Goose and I was glad to be back. Such a consistently well maintained golf course year around. I always make sure to get to the Goose well before my tee time to take advantage of the excellent practice facilities. This place is pure golf.

Yesterday was a picture perfect December day. High 60’s, sunny, with only a light breeze. I still have not after all these years solved my challenges with the greens and green complexes. I see why the golf course is often referred to as a layout that yields easy bogeys but tough pars. You really need command of the flat stick and especially touch around the greens if you are not getting on them in regulation. So many false fronts and areas of the greens you simply want to avoid. Then of course there is hole 18 which can transform any good round into train wreck – lol – I managed to bogey it yesterday and did not complain. Check out the photos I just posted.

Conditions are great at Goose Creek right now especially for December. The golf course did some overseeding in October and its help to keep it mostly green despite the cool weather forcing all the warm weather turf into dormancy. The greens are in great shape, mostly smooth with only a little bumpiness. I thought the front nine greens ran faster than the back nine. They hold your full irons shots well but get ready for pitch shots to release. Fairways in great shape with a few dormant thin spots here and there but overall excellent lies all day. Rough, not much to speak of in terms of length, a little longer than the fairways, mostly lush. Bunkers, just OK. Good sand quality but more firm and thin than I remember from past visits. Tee boxes in great shape, level and lush. On the golf carts they have premium mix with rye seed. I used up both the bottles fixing my fairway divots and others.

This is the time of year where golf courses in the Inland Empire really start feeling the effects of cold winter nights forcing turf to go dormant, become blonde, thin and firm. Not at Goose Creek. They spent extra time and money to do some overseeding and its paid off.

Excellent service all day long from the moment I arrived in the clubhouse, to seeing the on-course food/beverage service 4 times to leaving.

Highly Recommended
It’s been probably 20 years since I played Glen Annie Golf Club. Before launching GK in 2002. So jumped on the chance to play Monday with GKers. Teed it up with mpisarski01 and wbuchler on beautiful day in Santa Barbara. I had totally forgot the layout so it was like playing a golf course for the first time. I really enjoyed it. Hilly, challenging track that demands accuracy and a solid short game. Beautiful views of ocean, surrounding mountains and the UCSB campus. We teed it up at 12:20pm and finished around 4:45pm. Check out the photos I just posted.

Conditions wise despite the previous reviews in October/September I knew given the dry weather we’ve been having this year and cooler overnight lows in November it was going to be a dormant golf course. Also given they aerated the greens in late October there was chance they would not be fully healed to perfection yet. I got what expected which was fine. The golf course still played well.

The greens still had visible evidence of aeration and a little bumpy but rolled mostly smooth. I’d say this time next week and moving forward they will be better only getting better. They held shot well, had good speed and man there are tricky pin placement out there.

The fairways despite going dormant had mostly full coverage and a good amount of turf pad to hit shots from. I expect the fairways to become more dormant and firm over the next couple months.

The rough was not really rough. It was only about an inch higher than the fairways. It’s also bermunda turf like the fairways with some poa greenside. Those of you the fear kikuyu turf that typically accompanies bermunda turf in SoCal I saw very little of it.

The bunkers were COVID style. No rakes, a little thin with decent sand quality. Its brown sand, not the pretty white stuff.

Tee boxes, we played the white tees, certainly the most popular tees out there, we’re mostly thin, had some divot damage on the par 3’s yet level. They are small tee boxes which hilly golf courses typically have so with all the high amount of play there are not many options where to place the tees. The tees behind the white tees looked to be in much better shape.

Service was excellent in the proshop and starter. Did not see an on course food/beverage service. I did not hit range balls before playing so can’t comment on that.

Fun track I recommend.
Great time yesterday out at Moorpark Country Club with GK Gurus. It’s been a couple years since I’ve been out there. This is my favorite golf course in Ventura County open to the public. They have 3 fantastic challenging 9’s, exceptional practice facilities, clubhouse, staff and views. The playing conditions are always great and variety of holes outstanding.

Yesterday was no exception. A beautiful Fall day teeing it up at 12:15 and finishing in just over 4 ½ hours. We played Creekside to Ridgeline, the original 18 holes, my favorite combo. Creekside IMO is by far the most difficult 9 and a tough 9 to start on. Our group struggled to find our game early. My apologies to our group behind us for the slow pace of play. We started playing much better on the back nine completing it in 2 hours.

As far as the conditions, excellent. Greens as good as I’ve seen them here and close to the best greens I’ve played all year. Smooth, fast and holding shots. Fairways mostly dormant bermuda turf but with full coverage providing nice lies and roll out. Rough mostly bermuda turf as well, mostly dormant, lush and not too penalizing. Around the greens there is some rye grass rough that can be challenging. Bunkers in good shape with quality sand. Tee boxes level and well kept.

I can’t wait to get back out here again. Thank you to all the GK Gurus that came out to play on a Monday afternoon. Check out the photos I just posted.
Played Omni La Costa Champions Course yesterday 11/9 in Carlsbad as part of GK Guru and GK Cup Match. Good times with fellow GKers. POP 4 ½ hours.

This is my favorite of the two golf courses at Omni La Costa Resort. I was impressed how green the golf course still was this late in the year given its predominantly bermunda turf. Granted light green and likely turning blonde dormant color over the next 4 weeks but right now the golf course is looking beautiful. I’ll have photos to post later today.

Super fun layout with doglegs in both directions, water hazards, tricky greens, mature trees, some risk reward par 5’s and tough par 3. You can certainly see why the golf course hosted PGA and LPGA tour events in the day.

Overall conditions great with exception to the greenside bunkers that were thin of sand, firm and at times muddy. That makes for some tough escapes given how deep the bunkers are. The fairways bunkers were in better shape than the greenside bunkers with a little more sand. Bunkers are a big part of the design and challenge of this golf course so be prepared to consider pitching out of the bunkers instead of trying to splash your shots out.

Greens holding shots, running medium fast and smooth. Fairways excellent coverage and surprisingly not that wet considering all the rain the day before. Rough was essentially the same as the fairways but a little longer with a blend of mainly bermunda, some kikuyu and at times I think poa around the greens. It was sticky, grabbing my club which resulted in quite a few fat shots. Tee boxes level and lush.

Service at Omni La Costa was excellent start to finish. Easy check in, friendly attitudes and nice to see the on course service many times for a Monday afternoon.

Highly Recommended
Second round of the day was at Del Monte Golf Course and what a treat. It’s not every day you play a golf course for the first time that was designed in 1897 (not a typo!). On top of that it’s very fun.

Again teed it up with Alex326, Deepsea14 and rgm2525 this time not a GK Cup Match but a battle for the BCB birdie chain.

Outside of the large areas of dried out turf due to water conservation about 150 to 200 yards in front of the fairways and adjacent to the rough on the majority of holes, the playing conditions were great. Small pure medium/fast rolling greens. Lush fairways and rough. Bunkers had nice white sand and well groomed. Tee boxes were level and lush. Mature layout with big trees and strategic bunkering. Greenside rough was longer than the fairway rough and it made a difference because of the small greens with tricky pitch shots. I hope you have a lob wedge you’re very comfortable with because there's no bump and run going on here.

We teed off at 2:40 and finished just in time before dark around 6:25. I thoroughly enjoyed the new experience especially the 6-12 stretch of holes. Absolutely love hole #9 par 5 that doglegs right around some mutual trees. This golf course is a great option to play especially if you know someone that is a member of their Dukes Club ;)

I only wish they had a driving range but understand how primo that real-estate is.

Check out the photos I posted – Recommended!
Played Quail Lodge & Golf Club yesterday 10/26 for a GK Cup Match with Alex326, Deepsea14 and rgm2525. Always a blast teeing it up those guys. Love Quail Lodge & Golf Club.

It was a cold morning start 48 degrees at 8:06m for this SoCal golfer bundled up for the first time in 8 months. By the end of the round it was in the low 70’s. Kind of odd for Carmel as normally given its close proximity to the ocean temps don’t vary that much. The golf course was in great condition as always but not as attractive looking in the fairways due to very recent dethatching. Basically that’s when they verticut the fairways and when they come across thatch that needs removed those areas have noticeable blemishes of removed turf. What??? Blemishes at Quail Lodge??? Was a shocker for me as in all the times playing Quail Lodge the fairways have been a 10. Anyway we simply played those sections as a free drop no closer to the hole (mutually agreed upon in our group so GK Cup rules stickers relax! – LOL)

Conditions breakdown. Greens were smooth, medium speed and holding shots very well. Fairways in great shape, beautiful lies except where the thatch removal blemishes were. Rough not very long except around the greens and especially around the bunkers. Bunkers were perfect as always. Beautiful white sand and exceptionally groomed (they had rakes). Tee boxes excellent shape lush and level.

This is a short golf course that you can score very well on if you are avoiding the fairway bunkers and hitting the greens on approach. The greens are not that tricky to putt and roll pure. You don’t have to be laser accurate off the tee or on approach but miss the greens and you will surely have a difficult up and down from the rough and bunkers. So you either score very well or have a long day. I had a long day Monday.

Best way to get a feel for the layout is to check out the photos I just posted.

We finished our round in 4 hours and never waited. After the round we normally grab a bite at their restaurant Edgars but unfortunately we found out its closed Mondays. I highly recommend Edgars if you get an opportunity.

Also in the past I’ve stayed at Quail Lodge when playing golf there. I missed doing that this time around. The place is beautiful, right next to the 14th hole of the golf course with a super fun 9 hole putting course (included in the photos I posted).

Highly recommended.
Out with GK Gurus at Tierra Rejada Golf Club in Moorpark Monday. Always great to tee it up with GKers and it’s been a long time since I played Tierra Rejada. Came out to check out the extensive bunker renovation. If you ever played Tierra Rejada you know how loaded the golf course is with bunkers. What a massive improvement. The bunkers all contain beautiful white sand that is not too soft and plays fantastic. I know, I hit 5 bunkers during my round – LOL. Plus they groomed all the bunker edges and even removed some fairways bunkers replacing them with grass bunkers. Just a super job. If you have not played Tierra Rejada since this improvement go check it out.

We teed off at 1:00pm and got around in about 4 hours. Tee times spaced 10 minutes apart. They have limited carts and request players share a cart. I don’t know if shared carts is required to ride, forgot to ask. This is NOT a walking golf course but any stretch of the imagination.

Overall playing conditions are good but would be much better if the greens were in better shape. The greens surprising appeared to need more time to heal from a dryject aeration done two weeks ago and unfortunately had a lot ball marks we were fixing. Give the greens another week or two and they should be vastly improved. Bunkers immaculate. Tee boxes in good shape although given the heavy amount of play the par 3 boxes had a lot of divot damage at times. Fairways mostly lush at times thin but provided full coverage. Rough was in better shape mostly lush especially green side.

The layout is underrated in terms of difficulty. It’s very demanding off the tee and you need to know how to hit of an uneven lie from the fairways and rough. Bunkers guard all the greens well and pitching the ball is no picnic. The greens especially on the front nine are tricky to read with many undulations. Shocking to me see a USGA rating from the blue tees 70.9/129 – par 72/6557. It’s a fun layout with many great views and interesting holes. Check out the photos I posted.

Great day of golf. Recommended. Looking forward to my next round out there.
Second round on Thursday was at Rancho Del Sol, formally Moreno Valley Ranch with GK Gurus. For me, the build up to play this round was tremendous being I never got to play MVR before it closed and it seemed like it was going to be closed for good. Very few golf courses are resurrected now days. Man what a pleasure.

Add to my excitement was to be able to play it with Itslikeimsaying and sixpez … basically MVR historians. These guys were better than Google at filling me in on each hole, changes to the holes if any and some of their previous experiences. Was awesome teeing it up with Keith who came out of his golf hibernation for this round…. which of course he birdies 18 (good thing it was not for the BCB).

I loved this layout. The Mountain nine (back nine) is a special piece of property and Valley nine (front nine) was a blast. The Lakes nine is no more so there’s your 18 holes. This is a tough golf course that played much longer than the 6100 blue tee scorecard. Every hole is a challenge and fun to take on. I snapped a bunch of photos and posted them here so please check them out. Especially take a look at the Mountain nine (back nine) wow. I was taken in by the wide scenic views and loved the 13 – 17 stretch. Hole’s 15 and 16 are amazing and worth the trip to play this golf course at least once.

I thought the golf course was in great shape. Lush fairways that had damp or dry areas at times but provided good lies to hit from. Greens, bent grass, rolling smooth, holding shots, and medium/fast. Rough mostly thin adjacent to the fairways but long around the greens complexes and especially greenside bunkers. Speaking of the bunkers, they are in great shape but due to COVID-19 no raking so lots of footprints. Tee boxes were in very good shape, mostly lush, some divot damage on the par 3’s but no big deal.

There is no clubhouse or driving range. The old clubhouse is going to be demolished, not sure of the plans to build another but they are operating out of two trailers. COVID-19 Masks required in trailers and in the general common area near the trailers but not on the golf course. We played in the afternoon, teeing it up at 2:15 and easy finished 18 holes. Wow, the Mountain nine in the afternoon with the shadows and lighting is golf picture taker like me dream.

Service very good and friendly.

Only downside is there is a lot of housing development construction taking place near the clubhouse, holes 10 and 18. Hole 18 is now a par 3 as a result. I don’t mind finishing on Par 3, especially after thoroughly enjoying the Mountain nine. Highly Recommended.
Played Classic Club Thursday with GK Gurus. Classic Club recently reopened from COVID-19 precautions on September 1st and before you know it will be closed again for overseeding on October 11th. It’s one of my favorite layouts in the Palm Springs region that I had originally intended to play earlier this month after our Desert Willow outing but couldn’t so had to get out there for special trip.

The golf course was COVID-19 cautious in that there were well defined areas around the clubhouse requiring social distancing with mask required. Mask not required while playing or practicing. They encouraged single cart riding (not required) and what was cool is every cart had their own rake. It was the first time I raked a bunker since March and given how beautiful condition the sand was, it was a pleasure to do so. Best bunkers I’ve played with exception to Pebble Beach and Spyglass this year. Also we played the last day of using the contraptions that have the bar on the pins so you can use your putter to lift it up. I talked with the golf shop after because many of those contraptions did not work being bent out of shape and looked pretty shoddy. They told me they were going to be having pool noodles in the holes moving forward staring the next day! - LOL - the noodles are better for sure.

Had some time to warm up and forgot how fantastic their driving range was. It’s all grass, huge and many green complexes to hit to. On the course, I found the conditions as expected due to the heat and nearing the close of their summer season. Greens bermunda, slow, mostly dry but rolled smooth. My problem is how to read the bermunda grain … which I always struggle with. Fairways, lush, with some dry areas but also damp areas which played a little inconsistent as far as firmness but beautiful lies all day. Rough, similar to the fairways, not quite as lush, not long and easy to escape from. Tee boxes in great shape. Love how big the tee boxes are out there. Bunkers as mentioned, exceptional. Overall the golf course was in very good shape.

Service was fantastic and personal.

As far the layout and experience, everything at Classic Club is grand. Large fairways, large bunkers, large lakes, large greens and long. Massive clubhouse and as mentioned practice facilities. You know you’re teeing it up somewhere special. A PGA Tour caliber golf course for sure that used to host the Bob Hope. Highly Recommend.
Thanks to everyone that came out! I posted a recap in the forums with some photos and more thoughts so please check out.

As I always my review is more from an group organizer perspective.

Sometimes outings don’t always go as planned and you need the golf course to step it up. I did not expect anything less from Desert Willow Golf Resort being I’ve experienced so much great service from them over the years but it sure felt good when it became apparent many GKers where going to be late for their tee times due to an accident on highway 60. Cody the starter immediately and calmly assured me everyone was going to play regardless of when they arrived. That if they needed too they would push tee times back or even create a special shotgun start for the late arrivals. We needed to adjust pairings and he was on it. Always letting me know not to rush our players so they could enjoy their practice facilities and have a great round. Big thumbs up.

Service throughout the entire outing process of locking in date/price, reserving tee times/dining, organizing the activities for the day and staying informed Desert Willow Golf Resort gets a 10. Once at the golf course I always love the staging area prior to play with the practice facilities in full view of the golf carts and starter. I never have to be concerned with not knowing where groups/players are. Speaking of practice facilities the large grass range, short game practice and putting green are exceptional. The clubhouse is gorgeous and outside patio dining with delicious food and views of holes 9 and 18 of the FireCliff Course makes for a wonderful way for our group, and any golfer for that matter, to cap off the day.

I was told the golf course would be in great shape and despite the scorching heat wave the week before it was true. Lush carpet like fairways, lush tee boxes and rough, beautiful bunkers and bermunda greens that did show some heat stress but overall where in good shape.

Yes, Desert Willow Golf Resort delivered, and so did our awesome sponsors LINKSOUL golf appareal and GOLFMOOSE golf discounts. Thanks you to all. We’ll be having an outing for sure at Desert Willow Golf Resort next year and you’ll want to make sure to come out for it.
Great times Thursday out with some GK Gurus (9/2) at Omni La Costa Resort Legends Course. We did single cart riding, never waited, started at 12:15ish and finished in 4 hours. Weather was beautiful and the golf course certainly had the “resort” feel to it.

We’ve had outings and past GK Guru visits on the Legends course all in the winter or fall after overseeding. Well, things have changed, for the better, with no more overseeding to compete with the warm weather turf so although the golf course was not as bright green color in the past, it played bettter. The best conditions I’ve ever played it actually. Full coverage in the fairways, rough, and tees. Beautiful paspalum fairways groomed nice. Level lush tee boxes. 2 inch rough which was mostly kikuya with paspalum and bermunda turf mixed in. When the golf course was transitioning away for annual rye grass turf it had some spotty coverage, looks like they are well past that now and the results show. Even the greens are improved although on Thursday they were longer than normal in preparation for the upcoming heat wave. The greens rolled smooth, medium/slow and were firm. Weak spot for the golf course are the bunkers which have always been a weak spot out there. Granted we are still in COVID-19 protocol however they are due for a restoration. You can still easily play your ball from them but for a high end course they are below average.

As far as service, missed the valet parking as it’s a long walk from self-parking. But at least the self-parking is not across the street in the mostly dirt lot anymore. It’s right next to the resort now. Still would have been nice to have a shuttle service but to be honest the walk did not bother me much. As far as staff, top notch. Everyone professional and courteous. Be warned although at the present time they do not have an on course food and beverage service. Missed that. Could have used a cold one out there on the golf course. Even the snack bar on the golf course was closed. They do have some water stations at the clubhouse and on the golf course so that helped. Just make sure you have plenty to drink before your round. With this Labor Day heat wave you need to be prepared.

This is a very fun parkland resort style layout with some risk/reward par 5s, tough par 4s and good mix of Par 3s. I thoroughly enjoy this layout every time I play it I just wish I could figure out the greens. They feature lots of hard to read subtle breaks that play games with my head and are well protected by bunkers. There is a creek that comes into play that is strategically positioned on some holes. In addition the gorgeous large sycamore and eucalyptus trees throughout will wreak havoc on your score if you’re not accurate off the tee.

Bring your game and relaxed resort attitude. You'll have a great time.

Highly Recommended
Had a 12 noon tee time in Carlsbad Thursday (9/2) so it was an easy decision to grab a quick 18 holes at Goat Hill Park in the morning (7:30am). Thanks AndrewZ28 for setting it up and mpisarski01 for joining in! We played in 2.5 hours riding.

Always a great time at a golf course with the coolest vibe around. Fun to wear a t-shirt and shorts enjoying the relaxing Oceanside coastal temps. It’s a unique golf experience on many levels. First and foremost you have to hit the ball straight out there and be on with your iron game/putting. The golf course is vastly, massively, underrated in difficulty. Want some great exercise, walk Goat “Hill”. Want a tasty local craft beer to chill and lick your wounds after the round, they got that too. Anyway, the golf course in the middle of a ton of big improvements as AndrewZ28 describes so please read his review. I remember playing it years ago when LINKSOUL (owner) took on the restoration project and there were so many large bare areas (like over 100 yards large). They had a phrase there called “goated” which meant you just missed the green or fairway and your ball decided it was at a skate park vanishing hundreds of feet wherever the hard pan bare areas would take it. That’s all but gone now. Amazing. So much new turf and more grass being planted. Come Spring 2021 I think the complete facelift of the place will be near complete. But I doubt the improvements will ever stop. Linksoul has so much passion for this place.

Current conditions are spot on with how mpisarski01 and AndrewZ28 describe. Place was very wet although in preparation for the Labor Day heat wave. I posted a bunch of photos. I love this little track. It’s rough around the edges right now for sure but still worth a visit in IMO. Just don’t expect great conditions. I’d say they are fair to good overall right now. Give it another month and it should be much better.
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