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This is a little late, but life actually takes precedence over golf (sometimes at least!)

Played 6/1 in my GK Cup 10 match. Didn't see the review about punched greens until the night before so we drove down and inspected the 16th green before playing. Punching was noticeable but I thought it was playable - it affected putts more on some holes than others but the overall quality of the greens meant they were still better than many places where they haven't been punched.

Tees were in good shape, a couple small areas that weren't level but easily avoided. Not a lot of divot damage even on the par threes. Fairways were good to very good, a few places where it was a little thin but still good. Rough varied in length, some of it was basically "pitch out and take your medicine" thick, most was playable but would definitely affect distance and spin.

Bunkers actually played a lot better than they looked. Crusty/unkept appearance but all with plenty of sand - heavy and a little damp, but consistent. If they did a good deep raking they would be excellent.

Greens held shots very well. Putts that had to cross numerous punch lines were definitely slower and bumpy, but actually held their line pretty well. If you were lagging up for a 2 putt, as long as you got the speed right it was fine. Shorter putts (slower moving) tended to get bumped off line. According to the guy at the cart return this is a regular thing, every week or two. Seemed a little odd and to me it hints at some deeper issues but I don't play here often enough to know one way or another.

Because of the unknown punching the rating is lower than "usual" for the course. Not sure I'd pay regular weekend rates in this condition but the layout and challenge kinda makes up for it with a decent mid-week rate.

Still recommended but make sure to check with the pro shop re: conditions before paying full price.
Played with the Guru group 5/18. Agree with everything said except I found the bunker sand to be fairly good and quite playable (however they do need a good raking on most)..

The course is in very good conditions and the greens were excellent - well struck shots stopped quickly and putts rolled very true. Beware the pin placements, there were several that ranged from difficult to "oh my god" tough. You need to play here a few times to figure out some of the breaks and the speed.

Fairways were very good and first cut if rough isn't too penal - however, do NOT go outside that first cut, it's 50/50 at best you'll find your ball and it's about 9-1 you won't like it if you do!

As noted in prior reviews, there is a HUGE difference between the front and back nines. Both are solid tests but completely different feel.

Service was great, very nice and pleasant staff.

Definitely recommended and a good value as well. Hope it's not another 18 months before I get down here again.
Played from the white tees in the first of two Guru groups Thursday. First time here and it lived up to what I'd heard.

From tee-to-green the course is in what I'd call "Goldilocks" condition - tees, fairways and rough were very nice, not too short, not too long, but "just right". Same for the greens, they accepted a well struck shot but if the trajectory was too flat and/or not enough spin the ball would bounce and roll - not too hard, not too soft, but "just right".

The bunkers were the most consistent and had the greatest volume of sand of any I've played in a very long time. My comment at the time still stands - "The quality of the bunkers far exceeds my ability to play from them".

Really enjoyed the course layout, holes going in several directions so you had to think out each shot and the effect the wind would have - also more subtle elevation changes than I expected. VERY nice mix of short/med/long par 4's and different looks/distance/strategies for the par 3's and par 5's. Its the kind of course you could play several days in a row and still seem fresh.

Large practice area to warm up, includes a good short game area and the practice green speed was similar to that of the greens on course.

First rate service from arrival to departure, staff was welcoming and pleasant, POP was under 4 hours (even with waiting quite a bit on #10-11) - what more could you ask for?
Played here Saturday as a single, second out but was waived thru on #2 so pretty much had the place to myself.

The improvement tee-to-green is significant since I last played here in January. Make no mistake, they still have a lot of work to do, but it's obvious they've spent a lot of time on the course and it shows (also saw at least 8 different people working the course). Closing the North Course means more $$ available for additional upgrades so conditions should only get better.

Greens are still very firm and have a lot of long-term ball-mark damage (fix the &$!# ball marks people!). Despite this I only had one putt that didn't roll well because of it. Fairways have improved A LOT, same for the greenside rough. Still don't want to be off the fairway, the weeds will swallow a ball whole with no trace.

Given their rates this course is worth checking out, especially as a way to work on your game. Hopefully it can continue to improve and get back to what it once was.
Played yesterday with Sixpez in a GK Cup match. His review is "spot on", the course is in excellent shape and with their very reasonable rates it's definitely recommended.

The best indicator on this course is the 6th fairway. Due to the layout (large trees blocking a lot of sunlight), that is where you always see the most issues and it was just as good as the rest of the course. The only real complaint would be inconsistency of the bunkers, some are still pretty packed down and very "heavy" - the one in front of #11 green was more mud than sand. Everything else is at least an 8.5 on a 1-10 scale. POP was good (not great) but that was mainly due to a somewhat slow 2-some in front of us and the single that joined us. We still finished in about 4 hours so it was still quite acceptable.

If you're thinking of playing here, do it now, you won't find anything in better shape for the money.
Played 3/13 in the GK Guru outing. Huge thanks to Johnny for setting it up, great price on a great course.

My first time here and was very impressed with the layout. Nothing terribly tricky, just a very solid challenge from start to finish. Definitely a different feel from most desert courses, if it wasn't for the nearly 100 degree temps you'd never know where you were (i.e. no palm trees on every hole!).

Tees were level and nicely conditioned - even the par 3's didn't have a lot of divot damage. Fairways were just as nice, didn't have a bad lie all day, not too thin but not spongy, just right for making clean contact. The rough was fairly thick and made you choose wisely when playing from it, but not so much as to only leave a punch out or lay-up.

Greens were somewhat firm but not hard, need to play for a little release - depending on the pin placement that could be a good or bad thing. Being on the right tier or correct side is important here - a thirty foot putt from the correct spot can be easier than an eight footer from the wrong spot. Sand was probably the worst thing on the course - crusty on top and quite firm underneath, ended up switching to my lob wedge with less bounce after the first two attempts went sailing across the green.

Local knowledge is a big plus here to make sure you're in the right position, both off the tee and on the green - also to know where your miss should be and how much room for error you have (had one shot land on the fringe and still ended up in the water because I missed in the wrong spot).

POP was ok at about 4.5 hours - we were the 2nd group out and I know the first group waited on several holes. Could have been a little faster but given the course difficulty once it starts to stack up it's gonna stay that way. Water bottles available about every three holes, ice chests on the cart and a good GPS system all contributed to a positive experience.

Definitely want another shot at it - my golf game must have taken a wrong turn somewhere between home and the course! Definitely recommended!
Played yesterday with my son (age 6), walking together for the first time. Fairly busy today, there were several people already on the course and a larger group starting about an hour after we did.

Conditions were as good as I've seen them in at least 10 years, the rain has helped tremendously. Some of the tees need leveling but if you moved around you could always find a decent place to tee it up. Fairways were good, couple soggy/muddy spots but even those weren't bad. Rough doesn't come into play on most holes but it's long and thick enough to cause problems if you find it. Was in one bunker behind #9 (which is where you do NOT want to be), a little thin and firm but playable.

Greens have always been the issue here, they are all quite firm and a little on the thin side. Due to the trees around some they don't get a lot of sun and don't always grow out well because of it. Putts still rolled well at medium speed but you always get the impression they're just this side of dying off (but they never do, not sure how that works!).

The course layout includes eight very short par 4's and one par 3. However, it plays a lot harder you expect given the yardage. There are only two of the par 4's where trying to drive the green is a realistic option - the rest either dogleg enough to cause major problems if you don't judge the corner perfectly or finish with a significant uphill climb. Also, the greens are REALLY small - #6 and #8 are no more than about 12-13 yards front-to-back and side-to-side. Lots of mature tall trees mean you have to stay in the fairway as well. Can easily be played with nothing more than a 6-iron.

Excellent value - $12 walking, no charge for my son. Nothing special but will definitely test your distance control and short game and is a great place to take a beginner, regardless of age.
Played last Wednesday with Matt-Matt and David. Conditions were the best I've experienced here. This is not a course you can play quickly but it was even a little slower than "normal".

Greens were good but a little bumpy, rough was thick and lush but if you got past that it was hit-or-miss. Fairways were quite good and had a surprising amount of roll considering how much rain we've had.

Couple observations - maybe it's just me but I'm convinced the green on #4 is faster than the others. I think it's from the wind whipping through the rock opening that leads to #5 and drying it out. Also, the fairway damage David noted seemed to be heaviest on the last few holes - likely because people ran out of divot mix and there's no place to get a refill on-course. Finally, the only real disappointing aspect was the range during warm-up. The roped off area was as bare and trashed/worked over as any I've ever seen - I'd estimate no more than 15% of the area had grass, the rest was dirt/divots. Not important enough to keep me from coming back but out-of-place when compared to everything else.

Staff was great from front desk to snack cart, the Marshall delivering a replacement set of divot mix for everyone speaks to their level of customer service.

Recommended, especially in its current condition.
Played Wednesday, started as a single (the 3-some didn't show), ended up being joined by Joe and Andy on #6, nice guys and good players. Finished in just under 4 hours, never rushed but couldn't really go faster due to those in front.

Playing conditions were good - not great, but solid. Greens has some very thin cuts, didn't affect putts until they lost speed. Should be much better in a week or so. They were also quite firm so only a couple times did any of us actually create a big ball mark - usually just slight indentations.

Tees were very good, not much damage and all were level with good coverage. Fairways were a little thin but they're never lush and fluffy, lots of roll out (both a good and bad thing). Rough was THICK, especially around the greens - on #8 I watched my ball bounce just off the collar and into the rough, knew exactly where it disappeared - and still took nearly a minute to find it.

Bunkers were quite firm, not really from lack of sand but from rain/weather. Still playable but you may be better off with something with a little less bounce than normal.

I've played this course occasionally since the first week it was open and still love the layout. VERY challenging and the different length holes mean you'll use pretty much every club in the bag.

Recommended - will definitely be back (just not sure when).
Played Sunday as a single in roughly 3 1/4 hours, still very wet with lots of casual water (#1 now has a small water "hazard" short/right).

This is a "Good News/Bad News" review. Good news is it appears better than the last reviewer reported and it's clear they're trying to improve conditions. Bad news is they've got a LONG way to go.

Tees were mostly level but showed a significant amount of wear. I'll give them a pass on that because I was out quite early and they probably haven't moved the markers or mowed the areas due to recent rains (odd observation - #17, a par 3, was by FAR the best condition and had the least damage of any on the course). Fairways were hit and miss, many dirt areas but maybe 30% were in play for most players. Stray off the fairway and it ranges from bare ground to HEAVY growth - many trees alongside have recently been trimmed and the cuttings will swallow balls (you'd need a machete or small chain saw to start your search).

Greens were ok, most had some bare or thin areas - they held well struck shots with medium ball-mark damage. Speed was a little inconsistent - in general medium with some both slower and faster. Rolled true, there's a lot more break on most than you think. They're also relatively small so just hitting them is an accomplishment.

Bunkers were saturated so I can't mark them down for that - it looked and felt like they were a very heavy mix of dirt and sand.

The layout is not terribly exciting but it's a solid track with a decent mix of longer/shorter par 4's and you'll probably use at least 3 dfferent clubs on the four par 3's (not sure why #12 is so long since the typical golfer here would be hitting 3-wood or driver).

Service was good and very personable, if the person at the Pro Shop is any indication they really are trying to improve things.

As a low-cost alternative (especially when comparing weekend rates) it's worth a look but keep your expectations reasonable.
Played last Thursday in the GK Guru outing with Bob and Jerry in the first of two groups.

Course was in good condition tee to green with only a couple exceptions. Tees were level and had good coverage with little divot damage, even on the par 3's. Fairways had a mix of grasses but presented good lies. Rough was fairly thick and lush, definitely affecting most shots so best to be avoided. Fairway bunkers were quite firm, some more like waste areas (best example would be the narrow one on the edge of # 13 just over the canyon, pretty hard and had several decent sized rocks in it).

Greenside bunkers were firm but playable, and there were a few areas around the greens that were cut pretty short as chipping areas. Greens were also fairly firm, definitely had to allow for some roll-out upon landing (I switched balls after a few holes, went from a Wilson Staff Duo to a Snell MTB, BIG difference re: stopping power). Enough ball marks that we could always repair a few extra but within reason. Greens started quick and got faster as they dried a little, if you play here you'll have to allow for grain influence more than most courses.

POP was good, a very relaxed 4 hours (could have easily been 3.5 or so). Cart girl was around a couple times on the front nine, once on the back and we saw a "Player's Assistant" (Marshall) on several occasions.

This course has a wide variety of holes so don't be surprised if you use every club. Front nine is more traditional, back nine has a some "quirky" holes that you have to adapt to (#11, sharp uphill approach; tee shot on #13; approach on #14 and tee shot/approach on #18). Some won't like them, I view them as an "outside the box" challenge (however, #16 drives me nuts!).

Staff was great, they keep a sharp eye on things while remaining very pleasant and helpful.

Possibly the most tranquil course I've played, there are times the only sounds are the birds and your own breathing - if you want to get away from the "house-lined fairways" of so many courses this is about as far away as you can get.

Recommended at their normal pricing - if you can get a discounted rate it's a great choice.
Played last Sunday with Dave, Keith and Mark - the prior reviews are spot on regarding conditions. Golfweek named Rams Hill as the #3 resort course in CA - which is pretty high praise since Pebble and Spyglass are #1 & #2!

Since the conditions and service have been thoroughly covered, I'm going to focus on the layout in general.

Rams Hill presents as a "Resort Course" and it fits that niche perfectly. Plenty of tee options to allow for considerable differences in ability and driving distance with fairways that are (for the most part) fairly wide and accessible. Greens are good sized, and different pin placements can make the same hole play very differently from one day to the next.

A very wide variety of hole lengths means you'll probably use every club in the bag, even if you're not a big short hitter you'll have several short iron approaches (assuming you're playing the appropriate tees). Bunkers can be extremely challenging if you're in the wrong spot (let's not talk about the skinny little bunker on the front/left of #5) but with good quality (forgiving) sand it's normally not an ordeal to get out of them.

If you try and play at or slightly above your usual score you should be be able to stay close to that figure. If you try and shot under that, you can find yourself in WAY over your head in a very short time. It will definitely reward good shots and thoughtful strategy - and if you goof then the penalty will likely reflect how badly you messed up (small goof = small penalty/outside chance of par, big goof = double bogey or worse).

Now, if you want to challenge your game, it is more than up to that challenge. Most of those large greens have several much smaller areas you must hit to have a reasonable shot at a birdie. Same for position off the tee - there are definitely preferred locations on most fairways, but the greater the reward for being there the greater the penalty for missing.

All-in-all, Rams Hill is one of those rare courses that can be enjoyed equally by all players, whether a 25 handicap or scratch. Definitely a "must play" and highly recommended.
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