Since it opened for play in 1963, Camino Heights Golf Course has occupied the same 30-acre patch of land 3,000 feet above sea level. This elevated perch places the nine holes below the snows of a nearby mountain but above the fog line, so golfers can play year-round without the fear of blind tee shots into a foggy abyss or abominable snowmen stealing their golf balls. Prior to embarking on the forest-shrouded fairways, players can limber up on the practice putting green or the hitting net.
Course at a Glance: * 9-hole, par 31 course * Total length of 1,932 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 102 from the back tees * Course slope of 103 from the back tees * Three sets of tees per hole (red, white, and blue)
The gold rush might be over, but visitors to the Sierra Nevada foothills can still try their luck on the challenging course at Apple Mountain Golf Resort. In the shadow of majestic snow-capped mountains, the greens cut through a fresh-air landscape of pine, cedar, and madrone trees. Starting from a challenging par 4 known as the "GoldSeeker," the 18-hole course boasts some unique terrain such as the downhill steps of "Strike It Rich" and the deceptively difficult "Mother Lode."
Bass Lake Golf Course's par-72 course challenges players of all skill levels with up to 5,939 scenic yards of rolling foothills, stubborn trees, and glittering lakes infested with hungry, hungry hippos. The course's 18 holes test golfers' finesse with short layouts?including the up-to-150-yard hole 10?and driving accuracy with lengthy layouts?such as the up-to-526-yard hole 1. Since taking ownership of the course in 2002, Alex and Sabrina Ho have enhanced the club with a 30-stall driving range, practice greens, a pro shop, and an onsite restaurant and bar.
The Ridge Golf Course and Event Center's 6,734-yard course—designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr.—stretches across wide-open, natural expanses, and up and over rippling foothills to reveal breath-taking views. The 18-hole, par 71 course offers challenges for golfers of all levels, daring them to evade the 48 bunkers, water hazards, and oak trees that have been known to hit balls back. Some holes are especially tricky, for instance, on hole 7, an uphill fairway precedes a 26-yard-deep rolling green, prompting golfers to pull their three-wood instead of their driver. But as Greg French—retired director of Golf at The Ridge—said, "It doesn't have to be a difficult course," according to their website. Each hole contains four sets of tees, enabling new players to set up closer, less-difficult shots.
When they're not testing their mettle on the course, players can settle disputes with their empty stomachs at the club’s bar and grill, where cooks grill burgers and sizzle up hot sandwiches.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 71 course * Total length of 6,734 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 72.2 from the back tees * Course slope of 137 from the back tees * Four sets of tees per hole * Scorecard
In 1988, the owners of a ramshackle golf course put it up for sale, taking out a small advertisement in the San Francisco Chronicle. But where others saw a lost cause, Gordon Morrice saw an opportunity. He quickly bought the course and set to improving it, clearing the rocks and trees littering the fairways, planting new trees, and adding concrete paths to keep wild carts from burrowing into the grass. Over two decades, Morrice and his family transformed Black Oak Golf Course into a facility worthy of a country club, with tiered poa annua greens highlighted by the signature fourth hole?a 131-yard par 3 featuring a dramatic tee shot over water. Along with a regular maintenance staff, at least one member of Morrice's family oversees the course on any given day, retaining a level of personal attention that keeps it from shriveling into a mini-golf course like so many before it.
Course at a Glance: * Nine-hole course with a driving range and practice greens * Total length of 3,164 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 70.4 from the back tees * Course slope of 128 from the back tees * Four sets of tees per hole
Staffed by experienced professionals and computers who’ve sworn allegiance to the Three Laws of Golfing Robotics, GolfTec’s syndicate of golf training centers grooms games with a five-pronged approach enhanced by technological refinements. Score-shaving wisdom resonates within the walls of the indoor facilities, where certified personal coaches point out flaws and strengths while providing golfers with tips to permanently improve their game from tee to green. By utilizing video swing analysis and motion-measurement software, instructors can assess pupils’ abilities with objective data and a fact-based tact superior to traditional hearsay-oriented coaching strategies. To further enhance performance, GolfTec offers club-fitting services to match each swing profile with its ideal set of sticks.