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Last Updated: August 10, 2018
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Mark's Golf Course Reviews
Played here yesterday with a 2:44 TeeOff.com “Deal” time for $34 after 20% off promo code. If you know me, you might know I’m rarely interested in pla... » More
Played here yesterday with a 2:44 TeeOff.com “Deal” time for $34 after 20% off promo code. If you know me, you might know I’m rarely interested in playing golf if I’m not going to finish, but this was a really good deal for a weekend and I decided to take the chance that I might not play all 18. I arrived around 2:00 to hopefully get out early, and actually did get moved up one group to 2:32. (Careful what you wish for.) Got paired with three nice guys, but also three guys who showed no sense of urgency at all. One guy was constantly playing with his smart watch and submitting all three guys’ scores after every hole, another one was practically a beginner and way out of his league playing the Babe, not to mention the blue tees. The first guy I mentioned often couldn’t find his ball and would be searching literally 50-60-80 yards away from where it actually was. On top of all this, he was also playing what seemed to be Christian Country music really loud all day. (Who has the nerve to think everyone wants to hear that?) Additionally, the carts on the Babe seem very sensitive to where you drive, and my cart often slowed down to like 2 mph even though there often weren’t signs in the fairway about how close you could get to greens and/or slopes. On most holes, I had hit my tee shot and was back in my single-rider cart before any of the other three had given any thought to what club they would hit or anything. After about seven holes, I started saying how we needed to pick up the pace if we wanted to finish. I don’t think that changed any behaviors, but thanks to three of the last six holes being par 3s, we eventually finished right as it was getting dark. A patience-testing round if I’ve ever had one. Overall POP was just under 4:30, but we had no one in front of us and could’ve played so much faster and eliminated any doubt about whether or not we’d finish.
Conditions are quite good! As you might expect on a busy course late on a weekend afternoon, greens had their share of unfixed ball marks, which is aggravating. Aside from that, they were mostly smooth, medium-fast and pretty soft, accepting both full shots and chips well. Fairways were good. Rough was in good condition, too, maybe 2 inches deep. I wasn’t in a bunker but took a good look at a few and they seemed to have sufficient sand. They did have ample footprints, though – no rakes due to COVID. Tee boxes are MUCH nicer on Babe than they have been recently on Ike. No complaints.
This was my first time playing Babe since a junior tournament more than three decades ago when I embarrassed myself by hitting my first two tee balls OB left and had to walk back to my bag each time to fetch another ball. That opening tee shot – and memories of frighteningly narrow corridors on several other holes – scared me away ever since. I kept my drive in play yesterday on No. 1 and improved my score by three shots (from 10 to 7 haha). My recollection wasn’t wrong about some of those corridors, too – Nos. 2 and 9 are ridiculously tight off the tee. And No. 11 is just a dumb hole, a par 5 where you can’t see the green until you’re within about 60 yards because it’s the most severe delayed dogleg left in the history of golf holes. (Or perhaps tied with that one at Anaheim Hills that lotrgolfer loves…jk hope you’re doing good Matt.)
I was tempted to throw 9 out as a “bad” hole, too, but I’ve been thinking about it a lot since yesterday and I think maybe it’s a hole that just needs a mid- to short-iron off the tee (something 150-160-ish) to put it in play and then have enough room to maneuver around that tall tree fronting the right side of the green. I hope to get back out there again soon to challenge it again. (And maybe knock another stroke or two off my score on No. 1.) Wish me luck.» Close
Played here in the first of two #GKReviewGuru groups on Thursday afternoon with JohnnyGK and sixpez. I don’t even know what POP was because I didn’t c... » More
Played here in the first of two #GKReviewGuru groups on Thursday afternoon with JohnnyGK and sixpez. I don’t even know what POP was because I didn’t care; it was so beautiful out there I didn’t want it to end. (Ok, just checked… it was about four hours even, although things backed up a tiny bit both on 10 tee and again toward the end of the back nine.) We all rode in single-rider carts. Marshals and pro shop staff were all friendly.
Conditions are quite good! I think the fairways are a little greener and more lush than my last round right after they re-opened. Really nice to play from in most spots. The greens are still quite spongy, not quite as pronounced this time as my early morning round on August 29. They roll smooth at medium/medium-fast speed and accept full shots extremely well. The rough is some good, some bad. I don’t recall being in a bunker, although I think Keith mentioned they had good sand. Tee boxes were good/decent.
We were very fortunate to catch the back (Mountain) nine in the most beautiful late afternoon sunlight. Holes 12-18 were absolutely stunning, especially 15 & 16. It was fun to play it with Keith and Johnny, because Keith and I have played here quite a few times together, and Johnny had never played it. Seeing his reaction to the beauty and challenge of the course was exciting. A great day on a great course!» Close
Classic Club Palm Desert, CAReviewed by: Itslikeimsayin, Aliso Viejo
Played in the first group of Thursday morning’s #GKReviewGuru outing with Johnny, Nick and Daniel. Fun times. Started right on time and played in a li... » More
Played in the first group of Thursday morning’s #GKReviewGuru outing with Johnny, Nick and Daniel. Fun times. Started right on time and played in a little over 4:00, with each of us using single-rider carts. Carts are equipped with coolers, ice, and two bottled waters. They also had tees and a rake.
The course is in really nice shape for the time of year and prior to closure for overseeding. The bermuda greens are smooth and quite firm, but accept full shots well. They roll about medium slow speed, but the good news is they aren’t scruffy at all, just slower than they look. Bermuda fairways were very nice. Same for the rough: nice conditions, not too penal. Each cart having its own rake makes for really nice bunker conditions, despite COVID regulations. I was in quite a few bunkers and they were all good; only minor knock is that they were a little inconsistent from one to the next on how much sand was in them. (But that’s getting really nitpicky when many courses have landmines for bunkers right now.) Blue tee boxes were good; don’t recall ever having to think about where to tee the ball due to any problem areas or anything.
It was my second time playing here. The first time was in prime springtime conditions where the course looked incredible in late-afternoon sunlight. This time was late summer grass mostly under midday sunshine, so the aesthetics weren’t nearly as nice, but it still played really well, and the fantastic layout is fun either way.» Close
I would’ve loved to join the fun at the Desert Willow event, but forecasts of a 108-degree day scared me off. Instead I ended up finding a great TeeOf... » More
I would’ve loved to join the fun at the Desert Willow event, but forecasts of a 108-degree day scared me off. Instead I ended up finding a great TeeOff.com “Deal” time for 1:00 at Candlewood CC. With 15% off promo code, it was only $39. Amazing deal! Checked in around 12:30 and was told I’d be playing with another single and a twosome. No problem getting single rider cart. Range balls were included; I hit a few off the “irons only” section. Both practice putting greens were open; one of them was packed so I continued to the other one and had it all to myself. Started pretty much right on time and there was no one in front of us for about 3 holes (when we got to the 4th green a single was teeing off on 7, and there was no one else between). So we made our own POP and finished in just under 4:00. I believe I was the only one in our group who’d played the course before.
COVID stuff: Pro shop door had a sign about mask wearing; employees were wearing masks both in the pro shop and outside around the clubhouse. All tee markers were out. No rakes in bunkers. First time I’ve seen this: Holes had no insert, so the ball fell all the way to the bottom, but the pin had a metal contraption that you lifted up to eject the ball. Industry Hills has something similar, but better. Two reasons why I didn’t like this system that much: One, the metal rod runs parallel to the pin, making the hole visually smaller and intimidating. In fact, one guy’s putt hit the rod and bounced out. (He took it as a holed putt, but I don’t like another “barrier” to keep balls out of the hole.) Two, the handle that you lift up is supposed to have a rubber or plastic covering on it, but only one or two still had it, so the rest were all bare metal and it seemed like I was going to scratch the paint on my putter trying to lift that handle with my putter head. Also, they’re a little tricky to operate, and sometimes it was just easier to reach in the hole and grab the ball than to get this thing to work well. (Not a big deal. Just trying to be thorough.) No beverage cart. Pretty sure the snack bar was open. Sign near the pro shop that said no water is available on the course, so to stock up or call in if you need anything… not sure what happens if you call. Carts were nice but no GPS and no cooler. They were stocked with free tees in the cart.
Course conditions are very nice! I was very happy with just about everything. Greens definitely have some imperfections and healing ball marks, but mostly rolled smooth and fast while accepting shots very well. Fairways had great coverage, no issues for me at all. Rough seems a step down, maintenance-wise with some inconsistencies from one area to the next. Most of it is pretty thick kikuyu a couple inches deep. I think I was in three or four bunkers and they were probably the best I’ve encountered recently. Other than no rakes, I wouldn’t have even noticed it was covid-era. Tee boxes were all decent to good.
This was my second time playing the course, and I was saddened to see they lost the namesake Candlewood tree on the par-5 7th! No one mentioned that in any reviews! It used to sit in the middle of the fairway about 100 yards short of the green, which made that a more interesting (and much funkier) hole. I played pretty well today, so maybe that contributed to it, but I really enjoyed the course today. Yes, it’s very tight in spots and unforgiving of balls that go astray. But it’s also quite fun with some nice elevation changes, the need to move the ball both ways, attractive bunkering in spots, fun greens to putt, and a cool old-school look and vibe.
Highly recommended right now if you can get a good deal like I got.» Close
Decided to duck out of work early today and nabbed a 2:44 TeeOff.com "Deal" time to take advantage of the 25% off promo code that expires tomorrow. Wi... » More
Decided to duck out of work early today and nabbed a 2:44 TeeOff.com "Deal" time to take advantage of the 25% off promo code that expires tomorrow. With the savings, I paid a whopping $21.75 to play Ike. Not bad! Checked in a little early and they asked me to come back in 15 minutes to get my cart key. I got paired with a twosome and another single, and we followed a threesome ahead. Pretty much teed off right on time and POP was 4:10 with no waiting and no one on our tail. Weather forecast said it was to be 95 degrees in City of Industry today, but I think the smoky air blocked the heat of the sun. It was quite comfortable all day, although very eerie and weird with orange, smoky skies. It actually became sort of disorienting for me after being out there a few hours. My eyes were playing tricks on me and it was difficult to tell what time of day it was.
Anyway, seeing I was the last to review the course, conditions are similar to that review from a few weeks ago. I'd say the greens were better today -- not as many unfixed ball marks and rolled mostly smooth at medium/medium-fast speed, although they weren't super pure so late in the day. Very soft and accept shots well. Fairways play really good but seem to have become more splotchy in appearance in the last few weeks, although the weird sky may have contributed to that perception. (Everything was ugly all day.) Rough is still a grab bag of various conditions. Bunkers had decent sand and millions of footprints... hard to believe those were all created today. Not sure if they're raking/maintaining the bunkers to start fresh each morning or not. Tee boxes showed slight improvement from last time, but still have a ways to go in condition and consistency from one hole to the next.
Hard to beat this quality of course for less than $22!» Close
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