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Heard good things but never had a chance to play here yet. Woke up early one morning with the golf itch and no work. I saw there was a 6:30 tee time and decided it was 500 club day.

Showed up 15 minutes early and there's was no one in front or behind of me and the starter let me go as a single. I believe 1 group was ahead of me who went at first light. I really really enjoyed the course. Granted half of the course is flat and on the back nine a few holes run along each other. However, there is not a house in site. You really feel like you are secluded and away even on this course. In fact half of the course runs along a preserve and offers a nice sense of isolation on a few holes.

The greens were the best part. Near perfect just ran medium speed, and had some minor divot damage. Rolled very true. The bunkers were fine, could use a little more sand but nothing bad. The fairways and tee boxes were nice and lush. Minor damage in the rough and divots in the fairways. A lot of hard pan and dried out grass beyond the fairways. Good conditions just not lush and pure.

I like what they did with the course. It has some funny elements to it. The island green short par 4 is out of place but a really fun hole. The church pew bunker on 18 is a funny touch as well. The few mountain holes are superb and I enjoyed the subtle dog legs and sand hazards that would run across a few of the par fours. The course has a lot of soul to it. While not on the level of a Scottsdale desert track, it's a definite step up from the boring 70s tracks scattered all over town. I really enjoyed the layout and will be back.
11 Likes.
The prices dropped earlier here and I was able to snag a 6:30 am tee time Sunday here for $59. This place is pure right now. The course is on the same level as any premier course in Scottsdale. I consider it the older brother of Legends Trail but still younger to Quintero. The shots and lines you have to select require immense strategy and is a true thinking man's course.

Looking back and photos and even thinking back I can't remember any issues with the course. The only things holding it back from 10s were the bunkers and the tee boxes. The greens, fairways, rough were perfect. Greens were a sneaky medium fast especially on downhill putts.

The tee boxes did have divots and were slightly uneven lumpy on some. The bunkers were consistent but a very very thick course sand. Much too thick for a course like this IMO.

I'm been twice in the last week and looking to go again. Course is 40 minutes out of town but worth the drive right now for the conditions.
8 Likes.
Prices have begun to drop here from the winter highs. I went out and walked at 3:00 for $55 through their website. I really do love the North side.

The course is in awesome shape. Tee boxes were perfectly level, minimal divots, nice and lush. Fairways and around the green are lush and perfect. Bunkers were perfect. They use a lighter finer sand here. Nice and fluffy. Always consistent shot.

Only demerits were the greens show some time of prep work on the edges. The greens were a tad dried out and had some dried out ballmarks. Were slightly dinged up. A few had some small needle like holes around them. Also red spray paint marking around some of the greens. The rough and natural shrub in front of a lot of tee boxes and some of the natural hazard had been given a buzz and didn't look the most natural.

Mostly some cosmetic things but really nice conditions right now and weather for a nice walk at Talking Stick N.
6 Likes.
Since the ladies didn't tear it up I'd figure I'd splurge for the $100 twilight and play Wildfire Palmer last Saturday at 2:30. I needed to clear my head and was able to walk solo and enjoy a beautiful day in Phoenix.

Following the cancellation of Founders the course has been let go a tad from tour level. The greens, tee boxes, and bunkers are still mint carpet. When they properly fill and level all bunkers for pro events it really shows. I felt like hitting in the front right greenside bunker a lot that day. The bunkers' depth and consistency were amazing. Helps explain how the pros can be so precise out the bunkers. The fairways were starting to dry but still 9/10. No longer pro carpet. The rough wasn't being maintained and wasn't a consistent dormant Bermuda (Obviously nitpicking)

This is a really fun course. At the end of the day it's still a resort course. While no pushover there isn't much danger to get into here. I always love playing here. I feel it's a tad over priced. But It's convenient and always top notch service and never overcrowded.
14 Likes.
Used teeoff.com got a deal Friday 8 am with 2 coworkers for $67. Top natch practice facility here. Really nice staff and customer service A+ as you would expect at a Troon course. The group who teed off in front of us flew. We were only a three some, so after the second hole we never saw anyone again for the entire round.

The course is in near perfect condition. Lush turf throughout. Only dings are minor yellow and brown areas and some divots in the fairways. Tee boxes were nice and level. There was some holes and rough spots in a couple. The greens were great. Very smooth greens with subtle and severe contours making for challenging lag putts. There were noticeable ballmarks and bumps I saw on partners putts nothing bad though. Speed was fast and the putts broke true.

The course boasts over 129 bunkers and some of the longest and luckily they were very consistent. Not the fluffy pro sand but a dense more compacted sand. The bunkers actually very easy and predictable to play out of. A few were a muddy and needed to be raked. What's unique about the bunkers is their design. They are not the typical steep heavily lipped penal bunkers common locally. In contrast the bunkers here are enormous. And have large have circle lips. However they aren't steep and the ball was rolling down and collecting in the bottom. They aren't difficult to play out of but wow are the sight lines terrifying on the par 3's and a few of the par 4s. It appears almost as if the bunkers are extending up to further defend the greens. Quite the mental intimidation factor.

It's a really fun players course. The fairways are wide and you can let the big dog eat. It will really test your shot making, putting, and up and down skills. One of the more fun courses I have played. If you want a test of your skills on a players course that's not ridiculously penal this is the place.
12 Likes.
Shout out to Mrkich's recommendation I was finally able to score a round at the North side of Talking Stick. Since these two course are owned by the resort and maintained year round, or maybe the location, whatever it is the prices are always higher here comparatively speaking. I was able to get out on a Monday morning by random chance and scored a $45 hot deal.

Pure winter conditions. I would give fairways 8.5/10 only because a 9 is tough but they were close to carpet just a little played. Greens had divots from play but were the perfect firmness to roll really true. The speed was the perfect medium fast. Really finally maintained fringes and green areas. Top notch desert winter conditions.

The practice facility here is quite impressive. They do make an attempt to make it a more full resort like golf experience but it's a miss IMO due to the heavy hitters in the area who know what they are doing. IMO the clubhouse architecture is blocky cold and gives an uninviting vibe. Stark contrast to the modern architecture of the resort next door.

I love the North south. It has soul is the best way to describe it. Talking Stick is located on probably the absolute worst plot of land in the US. It is literally a flat square plot in the desert. Instead of going the Fazio approach Coore and Crenshaw really did make a minimalist masterpiece of out it. I was never a big fan of We Ko Pa and especially not of the Talking Stick S. because of the artificial nature of the them. A scottish links style course carved out in the desert makes no sense to me. What the North is, is a smooth flowing golf course that seems to flow out of the natural terrain. The course is routed back and forth inside a box, with holes next to each other. There's a barbed wire fence running along one side and a ginormous casino/hotel phallus shooting up out of the desert on the other. In spite of these limitations the course has my top 5 course flow ever for me. Start with a nice but no pushover par 4. Then one of the most uniquely designed and defended par 5's I've ever encountered. It's pure genius. Then a bunch of quality adult big boy par 4's that require solid drives and quality shot making into elevated protected greens. There's no cute desert short 4 pars that can get monotonous. Then you don't come into a par three until the 6th hole. I love it. My group broke off at 9 and versus waiting I re walked the front 9. It was serene golf pureness. It's good here. The bunkers are a unique contrast being being overly flowing and artificial. Versus having mounds breaking apart most holes, C&C placed these cavernous bunkers to break apart holes. Very unique and visually impressive. The greens aren't a true links but have smoothly trimmed collars allowing Texas wedging. The green side bunkers are a stark contrast than you find here. They flow into undulations with minimal lips. The main defense being the slop away from them that is carried onto the greens. Really fun subtle sloping greens. I loved them.

I can't wait to get back out and play the full 18.
7 Likes.
Played here Tuesday as the second leg of 36. I had tried to play here before a few years but was deterred due to fires. With the amazing quality of courses in Bend my expectations were high coming into this round. We go out at 4:00 twilight and had the course to ourselves.

As a Troon managed course. The service here could not be better. You are greeted upon arrival with a cart. Everything is loaded for you and the practice range, greens and amenities are amazing.

The course is a masterpiece. You can tell it is a Nicklaus but it is unlike any course of his I have ever played. While the fairways are massive, the unique aspect of this course are the rock, brush, dead tree outcropping. What these do is essentially cut the fairway into quadrants. A drive in the wrong side of the fairway will leave a blocked shot requiring a punch out. Every tee shot you have to decide whether to carry or lay up behind particular outcroppings. Being a Nicklaus the greens are all elevated and tiny. The challenge here are the firm lightning fast greens, with subtle breaks. Most greens are tortoise shelled so laying up short and leaving a chip in the right area is key here.

The other unique thing about this course are the optical illusions on the par 3s and par 4 13th especially. Somehow with the way the water or edge of the greens have an angle to them it greatly affects your depth perception. On several holes you actually want to drive away from the hole on the outside of bunkers (versus cutting the corner) and somehow those areas are closer to the hole then going at it. There is another fun tight short uphill par 4. That appears tight but above the pinch is a massive landing zone. Course knowledge is a must here. Me and my partner went from 92s with one birdie the first round. To an 81 with 2 birdies and an eagle. Playing conservative here is the key. The par 5s are the most difficult and should all be played as 3 shotters unless you catch the speed slope on the last one.

I'm rating this course. It isnt the type of course that will have vertifcut fairways like you see on your. But the turf here is immaculate. It is cut so thin and perfect the fairways here are jicer than most greens. As we learned the second round you are better off lutting off the green to avoid rolloffs into bunkers.

The tee boxes were the nicest I have ever seen. Immaculate, perfectly flat, and cut thin like a green.

Sand bunkers were a perfect soft natural sand. Great consistency.

It doesnt get any better than Pronghorn. It was so good we came back and played it twice. There was no point going elsewhere.

The size of the ballpark. No holes backing along each other. The sheer magnitude of this course is breathtaking. It has by far two of the most epic par 5s you will ever play.
11 Likes.
The third course of my Bend trip. My buddy is a member here and got us on for free at twilight. Understand this is not a high end course and basically a really fun local muni. The practice facility and clubhouse are minimalist but get the job done.

This course is your classic super tight, short, risk reward target mountain golf. I absolutely love these kind of courses. They are a blast to play for a twilight round when you want to knock it around and not worry about your score.

Condition wise it wasnt the best. They didnt make it cart path only following the rain and the fairways were chewed up. Some really bad cart damage. The greens rolled fine, very quick downhill, but many of them had bad fungus infestations and other poa damage. Great condition for muni standards. A few of the tee boxes were lumpy but nothing bad.

The course is a blast to play. As if you can hit high fades or draws with your driver you can cut a lot of corners and overpower the course. I almost drove a few holes and hit all the par 5s in two. Many going driver then a 7 iron over some trees. Total blast to play. Local knowledge is a must. Really fun course with unique quirky holes if thats your thing. Which it is and I had an absolute blast.
7 Likes.
Played here Sunday at 4 as part of the second leg of my 36 kicking off my week in Bend. This is a really nice course. It was lush and in great condition following the severe rain.

Unfortunately it had to follow Tetherow and those two courses are on different levels. Widgi I would judge as a really nice private course while Tetherow is a world class golf resort.

The fairways were lush and had drained well. Not too soft. The greens were receptive. Rolled well. Just not flawless smooth greens. They dont roll at all downhill which is odd. I had recently played Pine Canyon and unfortunately that experience spoiled me. The bunkers were a little generic. The sand was a little washed out from the massive run but I imagine they are fine normally.

Widge is mostly tight to medium tight tree lines fairways. Greens are mostly protected. But they arent overly elaborate elevated greens. Some of the par 3s have some nice green complexes. There are some beautiful shute par 4s. But looking back I dont really remember any of the holes. I felt a lack of elevation changes held the course back a little. Also the fee to play during the week is $110. Then twilight is a bargain $35 without cart. So rightfully so twilight was slammed. So we had a slow round in comparison. Some of the artificial water hazards seemed out of place too.

Forest courses aren't my favorite so this course didnt quite do it for me. But a very nice clean, beautiful course.
6 Likes.
This is what a golf experience is supposed to be like! This is a one of a kind course. I had one of the best golfing days ever playing here. If you want pure unflitered intense harsh golf this is your course.

I can definitely see why this is such a love / hate course which is appreciated. Golf courses should not appeal to everyone. If you try to make everyone happy you make no one happy. And I was happy. While its detractors may state this is not a true links course
Who cares. Tetherow is Tetherow. It is a links course laid out on a seemingly harsh extreme unforgiving landscape. I love target desert golf. And this is extreme links target golf and it is awesome. No bumpbing and running here into the heavily protected elevated greens. Brutally difficult blind tee shots into rolling undulating fairways. Then follow with approaches into tucked pins on tiny slivers of greens protected by the most undulating greens of your life. The greens were the most challenging multi leveled undulating greens I have ever played. It took a few holes to adjust your focus to take into effect every break and dip of the greens. But there was a natural flow to the greens. I loved the putting challenge.

Once you walk down from the parking lot and get a view of the massive ballpark that is Tetherow it is awe inspiring. There was a recent thunderstorm so the conditions were softer and more playable than usual. Conditions were near perfect. Having only played here once is the only thing stopping me from saying the conditions were near perfect. Every tee box was lush and level. No dead spots in any fairways, no cart damage areas to bee seen

Greens rolled true and never bounced once. No one hits the greens so there are no ballmarks. Bunkers are natural and fluffy, yet compacted! Very easy to get out of.

The sightlines from the elevated tee boxes here are remarkable. The designer really does a great job of making every shot appear narrow and hopeless. You cannot miss anywhere here. And great shots get penalized if you catch the wrong slope. One of my favorite rounds of all time and a brewathtaking course. Easily top 10 course for me and would say it rounds out the top 5.
11 Likes.
Expectations and past experiences play a huge roll in the enjoyment of a round. My experience with Oak Creek is vastly different than most. My high school summer golf camp was held at Oak Creek. This was 16 years ago. What I remember is Pure as Pure can be Oak Creek. Wall to wall lush turf and beautiful fresh bark mulch. There was a time when Fazio was the most sought after golf course architect in the world. I have wanted to come back and play here as an adult. I saw this opportunity and jumped on it. No longer being a local, I was unaware Oak Creek had fallen.

The layout, bones, and experience of this course top class. The greens were nice and quick. Rolled great. Were soft and consistent. The staff, and seclusion are as good as it gets. It is a unique east coast style golf course oasis in the middle of vanilla urbanized Irvine. The grandnest of the fairways, sightlines, and bunkers is rare. There aren't courses around here that wind and flow with elevation changes like this course. The minimalist wispy bunker collors, and seemingly natural flowing waste bunkers here are not found in So Cal Courses. Quite unique

However, I want to provide a review of where Oak Creek is currently, not where is is headed, or what its bones or potential are. The weekend rack rate here is $185. I would have been really upset had I spent $185 with some of the correctable flaws of the course. The fairways are great. Very few brown spots but great coverage. I found the rough to be wildly inconsistent. As well as the slopes behind a lot of the greens were patchy and inconsistent. They would be great if they were let go, or if they were consistently mowed. They were in between.

A few of the tee boxes were bad. Like local muni bad. There was a hole in one where I almost tripped on. Some very severe slopes and ledges. Many had depressions and mounds. There was even a comical tee box location on a slope. While this may not seem like a big deal. For $185 this is just lazy and easily correctable in my opinion. No excuse. Tee boxes need to be flat on a high end course.

I was also really enjoying the round until I discovered the greenside bunker. Johnny stumbled into one and really struggled. And I thought he was over exaggerating, until I hit in them. This may be a teething process, but the sand was not compacted in the slightest. It was legit beach sand. Near impossible to hit out of with wild fried eggs. I attempted to walk into the bottom of a bunker and the sand collapsed into a sinkhole and I rolled my ankle quite bad. I'm 32 and in good shape not a clumsy old codger. I really feel like I shouldnt have to risk sinking into a sink hole of uncompacted sand walking into a bunker on a golf course. Especially a Tom Fazio $180 course.

I also really did not like the ginormous touch screen monitor in the middle of the cart

Its in nice shape right now. For $180 it has flaws. It sounds like the right GM was hired and with some small improvements this course should be back to a top notch golf course like it should be.
11 Likes.
Went out Friday night on Pinnacle with coworkers. We tried to walk on and didn't get out until 4. It was actually packed and playing slow. We cut back and flew then had a great time.

The course re-opened from maintenance and is in surprisingly good shape. The front nine was in excellent shape. The back nine hadn't recovered as well.

Greens were great. Perfect fast speed. Unfortunately a lot of the divots had burned out and were dead. So there a lot of brown spots and dirt spots from the divots. Aside from the visual look. Greens were great. Rolled well. Little dried out for summer to be expected.

Fairways weren't as nice. The divots are drying out and dying at this time so there's a lot of divot damage in collection areas. Some areas have dead dried out areas. But mostly great fairways this time of year.

Edges of the green complexes have dried out areas and patchy grasses. Burned, dried out yellow edges of bunkers. Typical summer conditions.

Bunkers are always great here. Tee boxes have dried out divots, yellow area.

I was surprised how great of shape the course is for this time of summer. An amazing course, but it is definitely Troon North with summer conditions.
9 Likes.
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