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A tale of 2 nines. Everyone talks about the difference in layout and views between the front and back nine. Well today the conditions were as different as night and day between the front and back.

Front nine, the greens were bumpy and slow. The back nine they were smooth and rolled at a medium- fast pace. Fairways on the front were decent. Mainly lush and green with a few thin spots. Back side the fairways were very lush and a deep emerald green.

Tee boxes on the front were ok at best. Some uneven and several with multiple divots. Back nine was much better with most boxes level and with good coverage

San traps were decent all around. Pace of play was on the slow side, over 4.5!hrs.

Weather was perfect today. Whereas prior reviews, I’d say skip it because of poor conditions,
I’m pleased to say it’s now worth the cost of entry. Both for conditions and for the great views
2 Likes.
Played Spanish Bay yesterday with an 8:40 AM tee time. Weather was absolutely perfect!! You could not ask for a better day. No fog in the morning, sunny all day and absolutely NO wind the entire round. Course was packed as expected (all three have been booked solid for a couple weeks now) so there was some waiting on just about every shot but not too horrible. We finished in just under 5 hours.

Course is in fantastic shape tee to green. Greens were a perfect ten, rolling super smooth at a medium-fast pace and held well struck approach shots. Two of the greens had super tiny punch holes that you had to really look to see. They didn’t affect putts at all. As mentioned before, the greens at Spanish Bay have a lot of undulations, and there were some tough pin locations yesterday.

Fairways continue to impress me. I am very impressed with the grounds crew and their ability to keep the fairways so green and lush throughout the year with very little water. Not a bare spot or brown area to be found anywhere. Dblevs606 and I invited two co-workers who had never played Spanish before and they thought they were walking on carpet or fake grass because it was so perfect.

Tee boxes were just short of perfect. Actually, I don’t know why I wouldn’t rate them a 10, other than I’ve seen the tee boxes at Spyglass and Pebble in a tad better condition.

I was in two sand traps and the first one was perfect and the second one seemed ok too. I had a downhill lie on the second one so it was a bit thin but that’s to be expected.

Rough was the only “negative” encountered. Rough was decent enough, only about 2-3 inches tall but there were a few patchy areas, mainly around the greenside bunkers.

Entire staff is always super friendly. You just can’t go wrong with this Peninsula gem of a course. Especially on a day like yesterday. You know it’s a good day when you birdie the #1 handicap hole and have a tap in par on hole 7 which is my nemesis hole!
7 Likes.
Last course on this Vegas outing was the Las Vegas Country Club. This is an old school parkland course where all the old timers in Vegas hung out and played. The pro shop has some construction going on, so I didn’t quite get to fully check it out. Course is located right off the north end of the strip. Its flat (would be easy to walk) with most holes being dead straight. There are a bunch of water hazards on the track to keep things interesting and to add to the aesthetics.

Conditions were excellent as expected for a private(ish) course. I think they do a lot of business with the hotels so check with your concierge and you can probably get on for about $250.

Greens were great. They were medium sized with modest undulations and rolled super smooth at a fast pace. Greens were slightly (very slightly) on the firm side but held well struck approach shots. Sand traps were decent enough but not over the top great.

Fairways were lush and a deep emerald green. Easily a 9 rating. Rough was thick and penal. Very lush and you had to be right on top of your ball to see it. Tee boxes were very nice.

Range is off mats and goes out to about 200-225 yards. After that It’s a huge net to capture the balls. Range balls are in serious need of replacement. Carts have GPS.

Customer service was decent enough. Friendly and efficient with someone at the end to clean your clubs. Highlight of the course is the small airplane in one of the ponds next to the 10th green. Sorta cool in my opinion.

Well worth the experience, but I can’t say I’d come back, only because there are so many courses in Vegas I’ve yet to play.
7 Likes.
Needed a fill in course when things didn’t work out for Reflection Bay. Chose Angel Park – Mountain course for no particular reason other than it had good reviews and was a mid level course (price wise). WOW, was I pleasantly surprised. Conditions were excellent all around. Fairways were just short of a perfect 10 and the rest were all easily rated at 8-9. Greens are the perfect definition of “average”. Average size, average undulations and rolled at a medium-fast pace.

Layout is ho hum. Almost all holes are dead straight. A couple of water hazards and the natural desert terrain on the edges of the fairway keep it from being a complete bore. That aside this is a great course (conditions wise) that fits the price tag which accompanies it. Range is on mats and they have a large putting area, plus a mini 9 hole putting course.

This is a hidden gem in Vegas given the current conditions.
5 Likes.
Was back out at Southern Highlands after the recent overseeding. Course is fully open (non CPO) and in excellent condition. Fairways and tee boxes were flawless. In fact you won't find any broken tees on the ground, as caddies are required to pick them up. The course is THAT level of perfection! Greens had just a light dusting of sand on the top that was more aesthetics than performance enhancing.

As an elite private country club you expect top service and conditions and you won’t be disappointed here. From the valet parking to the full amenities in the locker room all the way to the caddies who are all scratch or better players themselves yet maintain a great customer service attitude.

The layout as mentioned before, is just phenomenal. Plenty of elevation changes to go along with the numerous water hazards. See the photos for the gorgeous course. The pine trees which line the fairly generous fairways make you forget your in Vegas, until you get some views of the strip from the elevated tees on the back nine.

Front nine plays a bit easier so score while you can, or better yet just enjoy the day and the great course. Greens have modest slope but aren’t too bad. They held well struck shots and rolled at a medium-fast pace. I avoided the greenside bunkers but my buddy was in a few and they looked fine. A few of the fairway bunkers have small pebbles in them. That is the only weak spot in the entire place. Rough was thick but not overly penal.

Pace of Play was on the slow side as it was super busy (for a private CC) and I can’t even blame it on Jon Gruden as he was two groups behind us. We did manage to go around a group on hole 11 and that sped things up the rest of the way.

Southern Highlands is a treat to play so don’t pass up the opportunity to experience it. It’s an all time top 5 course for me. Our Caddie, Aaron was one of the best I’ve ever had anywhere.
8 Likes.
Hunter Ranch continues to be in excellent shape. Played on 11/11 with some other GK'ers and course was in great shape. Greens were in the 8.5 range. Rolled very smooth at a fast pace. Greens still held well struck shots but weren't so soft that everything stuck. Fairways were in the same boat. In the 8-9 range with good coverage throughout. Fairways were nice and lush. Tee boxes and sand traps were also in solid shape. Bunkers had nice fluffy sand. I'd give the course an overall rating of 8.5 tee to green.

Being a holiday the POP was on the slow side but that's to be expected. Highly recommend HR.
8 Likes.
I couldn't make the Porter Valley outing so I snuck in a round at another GK supporter course, the always fun and challenging Ridge Creek. First off the pace of play slow down from a couple of weeks ago was gone. Dblevs606 and I teed off at 8:40 AM this morning (him riding, me walking) and after getting around the group in front of us on hole 3, we had clear sailing the rest of the way. Easily finished in 3 hrs and that would have been faster if I had played better.

Greens were nice and fast and rolled true. Some of the greens are starting to show signs of a lot of pitch marks which comes with the territory being the greens are always receptive to approach shots. Fairways were nice and lush. Easily an 8 if not a 9. Most tee boxes are ok but a couple are starting to have some unevenness to them. Sand traps are ok, Still about a 1/3 are GUR.

Restaurant is open and it was nice to get a bite to eat afterwards. Just hope the putter shows up next week when the BC is on the line!
7 Likes.
Day 2 (of playing) at Bandon was at Old Mac. Started off a little earlier (9:20) in the fog/drizzle. Not cold and no wind so it wasn’t bad especially while walking. Weather cleared up to sun and a 1 club wind by the end. Conditions are very similar to Bandon Dunes as far as the fairways, bunkers and tee boxes go. Greens hadn’t been punched but rolled slower.

Layout of Old Mac is definitely links style golf. Wide fairways with lots of mounds to direct and redirect your ball as it lands and rolls out. Old Mac has more fairway pot bunkers some of which are HUGE and deep!!

Greens – largest in the world. They are huge and have severe, no make that VERY SEVERE undulations! Definitely on the gimmicky side. Three putts are very common. I had 6 three putts on the front nine alone.

It’s an enjoyable layout with some short par 4’s and a couple long par 4’s to go along with the normal ones. Having a caddie helped with shot alignment off the tee. Especially since the driver came off vacation mode today and was working well.

Course has it’s own clubhouse which is small and incorporates a small snack shop. There is also a snack shop on the ocean cliff next to the 8th tee box. Old MacDonald doesn’t have too many ocean views but you can hear the waves crashing the entire time due to being so close to the water.

As a side note, Tony's Crab Shack 5 miles down the road is a must eat. I got this recommendation from MichaelKo and it was so good we ate there twice!
16 Likes.
Finally got a round in at Bandon Dunes today. After an 18 month delay due to COVID then a 2 day rain delay when we got here, was treated to perfect weather today. Sunny with a light breeze that worked up to a 1 club wind by the end of the day. Course was in very nice shape as expected but not over the top fantastic. Bandon Dunes (the course) has wide fairways with little trouble to find off the tee for the most part. A couple of holes have some forced carries but other than that nothing major. I had a horrible day with the driver yet the only two balls I lost all day were with irons.

Greens had been punched a couple of weeks ago so they were rolling slower than normal but still rolled fairly true at a medium-fast pace. Greens are pretty large so you can easily have a 90-100 foot lag putt. Greens have a good amount of undulations, but not ridiculous amounts.

Fairways were links style with tight lies that offer a generous amount of roll out. Tee boxes were find and the one greenside bunker I was in had a good amount of sand.

Caddie (Kurt) was a seasoned veteran and knew his way around the course. Very helpful on picking landing spots and reading putts.

I will say, I was a bit disappointed with customer service. No one to grab the bags at the bag drop, no one cleaning clubs or shoes afterwards and average customer service at best in the pro-shop.

Given the horrible weather the past two days that saw torrential downpour and 40-50 mph winds, it was easy to overlook the average customer service and enjoy the fun course.
8 Likes.
Played Poppy Ridge for the first time alongside Deepsea14 and MichaelKo during the NCGK Cup final. Been wanting to put this on my list of courses to play and this was the perfect opportunity. Layout is very enjoyable. Lots of elevation changes and a few water hazards thrown in for aesthetics and challenge. Course has three 9 hole layouts and we played the Zinfandel / Merlot combination. Both were very similar in design and style.

Greens had some decent slope to them generally in the form of back to front. No wild multiple undulations that made them “gimmicky”. Greens rolled true at a medium-fast pace. Greens held approach shots well enough.

Fairways were pretty decent. Some thin spots and brown areas here and there but overall ok. A lot of the holes have speed slots that maximize driving distance if you hit them.
Tee boxes were fine, level for the most part with good coverage. Sand traps were very nice. A good amount of fluffy sand. Bunkers are deep. Make that very deep, so having good quality sand made it nice to hit out of.

Check in was friendly and simple. Range is all grass and on nice grass at that! We had a wide open course for the most part. No one in front of us on the front nine and only had minimal waiting on the back nine on the last couple holes. Probably because as a group we were probably only 3-4 over total on the last few holes thanks to a barrage of birdies by Ko.

Restaurant closes at 4pm and bar closes at 5pm so we just missed food. Oh well next time. Definitely a fun course to play that I’m sure I’ll make a point of playing it again.
8 Likes.
Played Carmel Valley Ranch this afternoon on a gorgeous sunny day with temps in the mid to high 80’s with about a 10 mph wind. Course was in great shape overall. Greens were a tad firm and definitely on the fast side. Well struck approach shots would hold but only the most perfectly struck pitch shots would check up. Greens rolled nice and smooth. Greens look easy enough at first until you take a close look and realize the severity of the breaks.

Fairways were absolutely excellent. Easily in the 8-9 rating range. Fairways were lush throughout but did have a few soft/wet spots that would kill any chance of roll out.

Tee boxes were level with good coverage throughout. Rough was about 2” deep and manageable. Sand traps are top notch with nice fluffy deep sand. Fun layout for sure with the front nine being flat and about 6 holes on the back nine with some elevation changes.

Range is on grass and carts have lush seats and GPS. Effortless and friendly check-in. The only issue was the snack shop at the turn (which is actually after the 8th hole). It’s part of a gift shop and service area for the pool. Not only is it a bit hectic but the service was a bit slow. Other than that it was smooth sailing.
5 Likes.
Played Monday AM in the high wind. The nice thing about Black Horse is most of the holes go North/South to the wind so you don't have to deal with too much cross wind. Hole 9 being the worst. Range has been on mats for a while now. Not sure if that's just a Monday thing to let the grass recover after a packed weekend or not. Also, the practice bunkers now have a decent amount of sand in them. For a while they were very very thin.

Greens remain firm and fast. They roll true and with the sever undulations (as mentioned before) the breaks are easy to identify but hard to control. Interestingly there were some tough pin placements, that somehow because they were so tucked in took some of the nasty undulations out play by forcing you to hit it so hard past them.

As the previous reviewer mentioned, there seems to be two types of grass growing on the fairways. As long as you are on one or the other it's all good. Get in between the two and it gets a little dicey but still manageable. First cut was decent and predictable.

Tee boxes were all level with good coverage. I was in two bunkers, one was ok but a bit thin, the other was very nice.

Pace of play started off slow and I joined up with another single who was "taking his time". We waited on most shots and then after the turn the course opened up. I had time to kill so I remained back with the other gentleman and we finished in 3.5 hours. Probably could have knocked that down to 3 if I had wanted.

Customer service is getting better and better. It's always been decent but now seems to be a little better. No bag service during the week which I miss. Actually, I'm not sure if they brought back the bag/ club cleaning service back after COVID.

Course offers a number of views of the ocean (white cap views yesterday) and has a bunch of elevation changes throughout the track to make it fun.

Restaurant overlooks the putting green and ocean for a nice setting. Food is good. Nothing spectacular but nothing to regret afterwards.
8 Likes.
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