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Played in the GK Cup Final group yesterday, teeing off around 12.

This was my first time playing Oak Quarry and I'm a huge fan. Echoing the other reviews, it wouldn't be fair to rate this course considering the timing of playing, right before major maintenance.

That being said, I really liked the course under the conditions. I can only imagine how amazing this place will be once overseeding and aerification settle in and the course is more on the lush side, but the firm and fast conditions made for some serious fun. Even in the current state I thought the fairways provided great surfaces and the greens rolled at a decent speed and held shots.

I will say that the layout here is one of the best public layouts I've played in SoCal. There's no shortage of variety of holes, most with multiple options for each shot (you can be as aggressive as you want and there were bail out areas), the scenery is amazing as it's definitely a photogenic track.

Every staff member I met was super friendly and major thanks to the guy who opened up the bar for us after the round so we could have a beer and celebrate Mark's win :)

I can't wait to come back and play this course after the maintenance and get the full experience. Really had a blast and would highly recommend Oak Quarry.
8 Likes.
Played with the GK Gurus yesterday, 8/5, teeing off about 3:00 PM.

I hadn't been to San Vicente since I was a kid when we'd visit and stay at the time shares, so this was more or less my first time visiting since I didn't recall much. That being said, I wish I would have paid more attention all those years ago because I absolutely loved this layout.

The course has a very traditional feel at it's core, but when I hear that I tend to think of something repetitive and boring and San Vicente is the complete opposite of that. Our group kept commenting that it seemed every 2-3 holes reminded us of a different course. Started out a little like Rancho Bernardo in, moved into some Mt. Woodson with some Cross Creek thrown in and sprinkle it all with some Pasatiempo and Barona when you got to the greens and green complexes. When I was driving home and was going over the round in my head I realized I hit every club in my bag during the round. To me that is just one of the greatest compliments I can give. From the tee shot all the way through to the approach, this course provides multiple options that range from conservative and safe to aggressive and rewarding. Each hole is like Choose Your Own Adventure experience and that makes for an enjoyable day for all types of golfers.

I want to spend its own paragraph talking about the new greens and green complexes. They went through a complete overhaul and it was money well spent! I don't know who the designer was but they definitely have a deep love and respect for the golden age of course design. You get multiple biarritz greens, a punchbowl and even pseudo Redans that make front pins simply wicked. The bunkers remind me so much of Pasatiempo and Riviera. The afternoon light created some incredibly cool looks and textures visually. They're obviously firm as they are so new but I never felt like they were unfair. I just didn't know where to miss and of course I'm just not a good enough golfer to hit big, high, spinning irons to tight pins :)

Overall the conditions were really good. I never had a bad lie in the fairways although I might consider a couple "thin" but the ground underneath had plenty of give so getting solid contact (again if I made good swings) wasn't a turf issue. It seemed the back nine had some super pure fairways, especially the 18th. A couple tees were a little beat up but there are some new ones and multiple options so I'd be trying really hard to be critical if I went that route.

On top of all that, the staff and hospitality was the best I've experienced in a long time. I got the feeling that the team there is genuinely proud of their course and facility and eager to share that enthusiasm with it's customers. That kind of attitude is contagious and I really appreciate how they handle their business. We hung around for a bit and had some drinks and appetizers and it's a great spot to enjoy some food and beers.

I'm already planning my next trip back out there because I want another shot at the course now that I have some knowledge about the greens. This is a course I could play over and over and never get sick of. Really looking forward to getting back out there soon!
9 Likes.
Played Sunday 8/1, teeing off at 10:15 and finishing in a little under 4 hours.

All of the recent renovations have taken hold and the course is 100% open in it's normal spots. #5 and #14 new tees are open and awesome. Really lush, flat, bermuda tees. So great to see all the new teeing areas. The kikuyu portions of the fairways are almost too lush as is kinda normal this time of year in coastal Socal, but I never had a bad lie. There's a ton of new bermuda turf around the course that makes a HUGE difference in playability.

The greens out here are really healthy, holding shots well but just a little slower than usual. I actually think it makes the course MUCH easier because shots don't roll out (and off) the greens as much when they get firmer and the ball starts moving around. Still solid surfaces to putt on.

All in all it's good to see the improvements open and ready to enjoy. The amount of work put into this course in the last 6-12 months is really impressive.
12 Likes.
Played Mesa Linda last Friday, 6/18, teeing off around 2:30. Costa Mesa is ALWAYS packed so its expected to take awhile to play and that held true this time with POP around 5 hours.

It's been about 10 years since I played Mesa Linda and I still love this quirky little course. Oddly enough the greens were even crazier than I remembered and with some of the pin placements we had you just kind of shook your head and laughed. As for the condition of the greens, I thought they were really good. For the amount of play these things get and the short yardage, you know they just get pummelled. So I'm pretty impressed as they held well and rolled pretty decently. We did have the end of day/Poa wobbles to deal with, but not bad at all.

The fairways, tees and rough were all really good. Getting that summer lush kikuyu going and other than the 14th hole everything was really good.

The layout of this course is super fun to me. It's definitely short but you don't need to just try and overpower it because this little guy protects itself with some of the wildest greens anywhere. I think if you're smart you'd lay back a little and give yourself the best angles in rather than being as close as possible.

It was $49 for the round with cart which is a pretty good deal in the OC if you ask me. My guess is things keep getting better as they gear up for the City Championship in early August. I'd recommend this course if only to see how many times you say "this is the weirdest green I've ever seen..." :)
12 Likes.
Played a few times over the last week (Saturday-Tuesday) for various tournaments and events for US Open week.

The course still has a few construction projects going, but it's easy to get around. New gigantic tee on #5 being built, right sides of 4 and 15 getting sodded early next week (free drop so fine), 14 Tee getting rebuilt and bunker in front of the 15 green is getting turned into a big pot bunker which is going to be really cool.

All the finished projects like new tees on 1, 2, 3 and 16 look amazing. Just crazy how different it makes the holes. New fairway and turf on #1, 3 and 16 are all grown in and it makes a big difference.

Greens finally got back up to speed over the weekend with them being cut and rolled for the Member Member, but when I played Tuesday they rolled great and held shots, just a tad slower.

It's amazing to me the speed at which the course improvements get done here. For someone who plays here a lot there's always something new happening. Pretty cool to see.
9 Likes.
Played in the GK Event here on 6/6, bringing up the rear with a 2:50 pm tee time. I think we played in about 4:45-5:00 and I'm guessing with a few of us having matches that lead to a few extra minutes on the round. Not too bad for four walkers on a Sunday.

This is my first time to Olivas Links and it instantly jumped into a high ranking for me. First of all, $45 for a city resident on the weekend is INSANE! I know these are probably fighting words for some, but I'm putting Olivas up there with Torrey as far as local resident value is concerned. This course jumps ahead of Torrey in my opinion as its only $61 for us out of towners. Absolute steal!

As for the course, I thought this layout was fantastic! I'm a huge fan of links style golf but while this course does have those characteristics it doesn't really play fast and firm and there are more carries into greens than links courses normally have. That being said, I could play this course everyday and not get tired of it. There isn't a boring hole on the course and while I don't know if I would say there's a signature hole (17 was absolutely gorgeous in my opinion) the layout in its entirety does not have a dull moment. I think that the teeth of the course is really in the greens. While some interesting angles and sight lines off tees make for interesting tee shots, and the longer grasses and flowers outside the rough can be penalizing, the interesting green complexes are the best! Just so much to keep your attention out here.

AS for the conditions of the course, wow! I have to assume this place gets tons of play and the fact that the greens were as good as they are, the fairways the best I've played all year (I bet when they get a fresh mow they are going to be tour sauce!) and all the flowers and cool trees around, the visuals and playing conditions are top notch.

If you have time before the round I would recommend coming early as the practice area with huge putting green and great practice short game area are perfect for warming up. Range was off good mats with plenty of targets and a nice way to get in some shots in the wind conditions. The clubhouse is just a trailer and it's just shut down with the covid stuff, but the guy in the shop was super friendly and helpful and they carried a tasty local beer which was a nice touch :)

All in all I can't say anything bad about Olivas and I probably haven't said enough good. Super glad I made the drive and I'm already figuring out my next trip up. Go play this now!
9 Likes.
I'm way late posting this review, and I just checked and it looks like they punched today so there probably isn't a ton of relevance to this review, but I had to post anyway.

Rustic Canyon is a MUST PLAY. Hands down one of the most fun times I've had playing in a long time, probably ever. It's been on the top of a short list of courses I've wanted to play for years and I had a buddy who convinced me to take a day off from work, make the 2 1/2 drive and play 36. I owe that guy a hug and sleeve of ProVs for sure!

When we played the course was in really solid shape. Fairways were firm and brownish but that's how they should be. Never had a bad lie at all, was easy moving through the turf, but they bounced around which was perfect.

The tees were flat, solid coverage and it like most tees, easily receptive to putting a stick in the ground :)

When we played the greens weren't really that quick but rolled true. Now that they've been punched I can see why they had "let them go" a bit. But zero complaints at all. I can't wait to go back when the greens are prime. I get all jittery just thinking about it!

As for the layout, I don't know what I can say. It was so easy to see why this landed in the Top 100 you can play in Golf.com's latest rankings. If you haven't played before I highly recommend trying to do a 36 hole day. Playing it the second time was even more fun than the first time. Knowing the angles, the mounds, the bounces, etc. was a game changer.

We played the morning round from the blues and the back from the whites, got three different wind directions, and complete changes in surfaces in regards to turf moisture. All around one of the most enjoyable days of golf I've had. If this course was in OC or SD it would be $200+ and it would be packed everyday.

The entire crew out there was also amazing. Just super friendly and seemed to take a lot of pride in their work and course. That stuff goes a long way with me. We didn't eat there (we went to this place between rounds as a recommendation from my buddy, https://www.yelp.com/biz/green-acres-market-simi-valley-2, and it was so, SO good) but they had a really good selection of beers and the menu looked like a really solid snack bar lineup.

Chances are I'll get out there 2-3 times a year because of the drive for me, but everyone needs to make it a priority to play. 5 stars all the way around.
7 Likes.
Most recent update:

Played Monday late afternoon. We played the back nine in the weekly Pirate League. If you're local I highly recommend this next year.

The Goat continues to invest heavily in improvements. The third hole tee is open and it's gorgeous. Crazy how different it feels. The completely re-did the #1 tee box and it's about 4 times the size, flat and pure grass. If the markers are on the left hand side it's almost a straight shot to the green. Crazy!

There is new sod (and no ice plant) all down the left side of #3 so that helps. That also works into the left side of #16 so again, makes everything much better. Right side of #4 and #15 also getting new turf. Gone will be the dirt, dirt cart path and crazy clumps of crab grass. New will be pure bermuda fairway.

#5 tee is now under construction. Will be WAY bigger and you can tip that thing out around 175 yards I think, which scares the heck out of me. But the entire thing is being raised a couple feet so that's cool.

What isn't under construction is in some of the best shape I've seen it. The fairways are really really good right now. Great coverage and consistent. This is the best time of year for kikuyu (fairways at least) and it shows. Never a bad lie out there the entire day.

Tees were freshly mown, flat and great surfaces to hit from. Most of the dollars are going into the teeing ground and for a short course this is pretty important. When I asked the owners plainly said "you can never have too much teeing ground".

The greens are rolling really smooth but aren't as fast as I'm used to. They hold great, roll great, just feel a little "sticky". Again, I think it's the combo of the time of year (weather) and having to keep them just a tad longer due to the play and the beating they take.

If you haven't played here in more than a month I think you'd be pleasantly surprised at what the place looks like these days. There's always a construction project going on, but it's so nice to see the fruits of that labor and dedication. Definitely worth a play.
7 Likes.
Little late with my post here as I played with Dconnally on 5/25 in our GK Cup Match.

It had been a long time since I'd been out to SC (maybe 5-7 years?) and I don't really know why. I have a soft spot in my heart for this place as I played it a bunch as a kid and I just think the vibe is cool and it serves the golf community well as a municipal course that provides a great experience.

Everyone I've ever met at this place has been cool. Guy in the shop was great, lady in the snack bar was funny and engaging, the locals hanging around were fun and loud and when we were making the turn a junior group was loading up on snacks and they all seemed to be having a good time. Love a place that loves golf but understands how to make it fun and accessible.

As for the course, it a really fun layout. I think the front nine is a little more straightforward than the back, but the holes never get boring. I've been playing a tighter, more punishing course so getting out to SC with it's parallel fairways and somewhat bigger greens was nice. There's definitely a challenge to be found, but the course is absolutely playable and is a nice layout for all skill levels.

As for the conditions, I thought they were really good. Fairways were super lush and pure. Kikuyu is really starting to come in so you get those lies that sit up a bit, but it was like playing everything off a tee. However, kikuyu rough grows the same and being lush means it's not easy at all and over the next 3-4 months will likely get even tougher. Seems that especially around the greens there was some tricky stuff.

The greens were pretty crispy and bumpy visually as they don't look totally healed from punching, but didn't roll too bad. If you've never played here you HAVE to pay attention to the ocean pull. It's the craziest thing I've ever seen. More like everything goes hard to the Southwest from what I was reading. Definitely playable greens and will probably just get better over the next couple weeks.

Pace of play was more than okay. Half our foursome dropped off at the turn so we slowed a bit on the back, but I'd say it was in the 4 1/2 hour range. Not bad for a place that packs them in.

All in all I had a great time and will do my best to get back to SC sooner rather than later. It's in good shape, price is good, people are great and if you can get around in a decent amount of time it's kinda hard to beat for South OC/North SD.
13 Likes.
Played The Golf Club of California this past Sunday, May 23rd. We teed off at 7:15 in the morning and played in about 4:15 which was great.

I hadn't been out here for a few years but I've always thought it was an interesting layout. Since the last time I've been here it looks like they re-did the bunkers and they now have bright, white fluffy sand and they played well. I was in a couple and I think it probably needs a little more time to settle in because its pretty soft.

The fairways and rough here are still pretty thin and firm. I wasn't hitting it that great and trying to be really precise on the firm conditions gave me some fits, but I do think as the weather warms up they'll thicken a bit. Overall better than the last time I played there and if I was playing better it would have been fine.

The tee boxes seemed to need a mow but they were lush, level and I never had an issue finding a good spot.

The greens were the highlight of the day for me. They ran really smooth, held shots great and ask the day warmed up got plenty quick which was fun. I don't remember them being this healthy so that was a lot of fun to play on.

I really do like this golf course. It's a bit tough when the fairways get too firm and fast because the course is not really designed for too much run out and big bounces, but at this time it's not much of an issue and I think it will keep getting better.

Just a lot of fun to play, definitely a challenge but some opportunities to score. I'd get out and play soon and enjoy the great greens!
13 Likes.
Played Barona Creek last week on Sunday on an absolutely perfect day. I'd say it was about 60-65 when we teed off, no wind to speak of and just crystal clear. The wind did pick up slightly on the back nine but I think this course gets even better with some wind.

First thing I have to say is that I think this is the best layout in all of San Diego county. It had been about a decade since I had played here and I feel like a complete idiot for taking that long. I forgot how beautiful the place is, sitting in the valley with the expansive views. I actually like that each hole feels completely isolated when you're playing, but from a lot of vantage points you can see the layout spread out. It's really a cool feel.

As for the conditions, they are definitely coming out of the winter but absolutely playable. The fairways are probably the "worst" part of the course as they are pretty thin and the fairways do give you ample roll. That being said, there's plenty of cushion when you take a divot, you just have to take more of a compressing approach with irons rather than sweeping. We had a little rain through the week and as temps heat up that bermuda is going to get going and it's going to be really fun. I actually prefer the firmer, browned out look that goes with the terrain and strategy of the course, but that's just me.

Rough is exactly that here as it's not really lush, clumpy in places, but the fact that the fairways are huge here makes the quality of the rough mostly irrelevant. If you hit it there, you should be penalized. Past the rough are the native grass areas and that's always a crapshoot. If you hit it THERE, don't complain. Play better :)

Tees and bunkers were fantastic. There has to be a million bunkers on the course and they are visually awesome and the quality of the sand is perfect. In a lot of cases I found that greenside bunkers were better than being in the rough or fairway because you could hit softer shots onto the greens. Which brings me to the greens....

These things are INCREDIBLE. They finished a complete renovation of the greens last year I believe because over time all the bunker play and wind had blown sand onto them and they had lost their original shape and contours. Not only are the size and shape and slope of these things just a total trip, they were firm, rolling pure and super fast. I'd say these were in the 12-13 range on the stimp. You have to really pay attention to so much around the greens here to do well. It's just so much fun. For example, the third hole is a par 3 that was playing 240 to the pin. GPS on the cart (SUPER HELPFUL) had 175 yards to the front of the green. I landed it there and had it roll all the way to the back! My guess is the first time playing here you'd have multiple three putts, maybe worse as well as some chips and pitches that you'd likely get pissed at. You just have to take it with a grain of salt, maybe walk up to the hole and check out where mounds and back stops are that you can aim to to mitigate some crazy numbers.

The practice area here is fantastic and everyone we met was super nice and helpful. Pace of play was about 4 1/2 hours but it just felt like a leisurely day as we weren't really waiting much and no one was pushing us.

I could literally play this course everyday and not get bored. It's not often I say that but I can't wait to get back. I'd highly recommend anyone get out and play right now but if you're super particular about your fairways being immaculate I'd give it some time to fill in, that would be the only MINOR ding. Best layout around and just so much fun to play. I'll be back soon and often.
10 Likes.
Played 3/18 teeing off at 2:40 and finishing a four ball in about 3 hrs and 15 minutes. Love this POP!

Update: The range project is done and it's open. They have 5 Foresight stalls which are kind of fun. The range is on grass for the first half of the week and then mats on the weekends.

The tees on #2 and #3 are getting completely re-done (always something getting done here) so #2 is off a mat about 155-160 yards and #3 becomes a par three from 176 yards.

Greens are absolutely great right now. Highlight of the course. The tees have come back nicely and never had a problem finding a place to hit from (#5 is a bit chewed but I think that will change soon). Fairways were pretty good too. Lots of green coming in as the weather warms up and we had some rain. I kind of like when you get a little more rough here to mitigate some of the bounces.

All in all, the conditions of the course are pretty solid right now. This course continues to get more and more popular so expect a round at least 4 hours on weekends. Weekdays tend to be better. Definitely a unique course but a fun place to hang out.
10 Likes.
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