Spotlight

Yocha Dehe Golf Club

Sacramento's best: Troon Golf's Yocha Dehe Golf Club at Cache Creek resort

Yocha Dehe Golf Club at Cache Creek resort hides deep in the rolling hills west of Sacramento. Brad Bell weaved a variety of holes that can be played from the forward tees by anybody, or as a monstrous 7,337 yarder from the tips, stout enough to host U.S. Open qualifiers. There are so many strategic elements to like, and the topper is near-perfect course conditions, including fast and furious greens.
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Indian Canyons Golf Resort - South - 9th

History worth repeating: Palm Springs' golf landmarks

From pristine private clubs to premier public courses, Palm Springs' influence on the golf world has been tremendous. Judd Spicer takes a look at historic area courses from Indian Canyons and Indian Wells Golf Resort, to PGA West and the Golf Club At Terra Lago.
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Rams Hill Golf Club

Rams Hill in Borrego Springs: Fazio design is one of the best courses in San Diego County

Rams Hill Golf Club is perched on a dramatic hillside in the heart of the vast Anza Borrego State Park that overlooks the desert floor. Tom Fazio utilized the natural contours of the landscape to give each hole a different character. The result is one of the best courses in San Diego County.
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California Destinations

  • Sacramento & Gold Country

    The year 1849 and the California Golf Rush are long gone, but "Gold Country" is still an attractive region of the state. Also nicknamed the "Mother Lode" region, it includes the capital city of Sacramento to the west and the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountain range, which head into Lake Tahoe and Yosemite National Park to the east in Mariposa County, the state's largest.

    Located in the Central Valley, Micke Grove Golf Links is surrounded by scenic vineyards. The course is mostly flat and measures to a reasonable 6,565 yards from the back tees, but it is not to be underestimated. There are some tough holes including the par-5 fifth, which requires an accurate tee shot in order to avoid the hazards on both the left and right.
    Perched just above the northern California fog line, Diablo Grande Golf & Country Club enjoys scenic views and sunny days throughout the year. The golf course rolls through a stunning valley filled with canyons, creeks, wildlife, and vineyards.
    Haggin Oaks boasts two championship golf courses, the Alister Mackenzie Course and the Arcade Creek Course. Designed by the legendary architect known most famously for Augusta National, the Alister Mackenzie Course has a classic but formidable design.
  • Lake Tahoe and the High Sierra

    Northern California's High Sierra makes for some of the world's most spectacular natural mountain wonders. It's home to Yosemite National Park, home to mighty waterfalls and marvelous glacial rock formations. To the north, sparkling Lake Tahoe sits at an elevation of over 6,000 feet and provides one of the West's great winter and summer escapes, home to skiing in the winter, and boating, mountain climbing and plenty of golf in the warmer months.

    Nestled in the rolling hills of Gold Country, Apple Mountain Resort has a dramatic landscape that provides plenty of elevation changes, making it a nearly impossible course to walk. Some of the drops from tee to green are unbelievable, offering unrivaled views of the surrounding mountains. Nearly every hole enjoys a stunning backdrop.
    Graeagle Meadows Golf Club offers a dramatic round with plenty of water, towering pine trees, and elevated tees looking out over breathtaking mountain views. Located just an hour from Reno and Tahoe, the course is a favorite among locals and visitors. The challenging layout will test even the most seasoned golfers from the back tees.
    Tahoe City Golf Course dates all the way back to 1917, making it one of the oldest courses in the Tahoe area. The nine-hole course has been host to many well known names over the years, including Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Bob Hope, and Sammy Davis Jr. Despite the course's famous guest list, this underrated gem is still mostly just a secret among the locals.
  • Orange County

    Although Orange County might be best known as the original home of Mickey Mouse, the area anchored by Disneyland offers plenty of other entertainment options for travelers, including scores of diverse golf courses, both on the coast and inland.

    Westridge Golf Club is a challenging layout designed by Robert Muir Graves, a familiar name in California golf. Graves has designed many of the state's most popular courses including Boundary Oak in Walnut Creek and Quail Lodge Golf Club in Carmel. At just under 6,600 yards, Westridge G.C. is seemingly short but what it lacks in length it makes up for with more than 60 sand bunkers strategically placed alongside the narrow fairways and sloping greens.
    Shorecliffs Golf Course wanders through the coastal canyons and valleys of San Clemente, heading towards the beautiful shoreline. Situated just steps from the ocean, the course enjoys cool ocean breezes and a temperate climate, which makes it a year-round haven for golfers.
    Tucked away in the hills of San Juan Capistrano, San Juan Golf Course is situated midway between Los Angeles and San Diego. Its location is conveniently close to Legoland, Disneyland, the San Diego Zoo, and miles of sandy beaches. The championship golf course underwent a major renovation of its fairways and greens, making them some of the best in south Orange County.
  • Central Coast of California

    Between the bustling metropolises of Los Angeles and San Francisco runs an unparalleled stretch of American beauty that is the Central Coast of California. State Route 1 along the Pacific has long been aptly numbered in inspirational value for painters, writers, vacationers, and, of course, golfers.

    Avila Beach Golf Resort is located right along the bay, giving it a scenic setting that has made it the most well known of the Central Coast golf courses. The layout offers plenty of variety with a hilly front nine that features small, often elevated, greens that are surrounded by oak-lined valleys and a back nine that that is routed across a tidal estuary.
    Blacklake Golf Resort boasts 27 holes of championship golf that are divided into three nines called the Oaks, Canyons, and Lakes. The nines can be played in three different 18-hole combinations. The Oaks/Canyons Course is the toughest of the three.
    The Marshallia Ranch Golf Course is one of the top courses in the military, serving as the host to several Air Force and professional golf events. Located between Lompoc and Santa Maria, the course sits next to the oldest building on Vandenberg AFB, the 167-year old Marshallia Ranch House.
  • San Diego

    Nobody does weather better than San Diego, which makes the area a perfect location for many great outdoor activities such as shopping, hiking, surfing, sailing sunbathing and playing golf.

    Meadow Lake Golf Club in Escondido has a scenic location that offers stunning panoramic views of the San Bernardino and San Jacinto Mountains. The course meanders across rolling hills dappled with century-old oak trees. In addition to the towering trees that shade the fairways, native chaparral and impressive boulders edge the rough and fairways.
    Carlton Oaks Country Club is the only public Dye Design golf course in San Diego. The course is covered with hundreds of mature trees interspersed with sparkling blue lakes and meandering creeks. The layout offers a diverse mix of holes that all possess a unique character.
    Carmel Highland Golf Resort, a Doubletree Resort, tumbles across the sloping hillsides just north of downtown San Diego. It has a central location near many attractions that make it ideal for family vacations and golf outings.
  • Los Angeles

    The Los Angeles area, which includes Hollywood and Beverly Hills, has often been called the land of make-believe and dreams, but one thing is certain: There's plenty to do and plenty of ways to do it. From the movie studios, to the beaches, to the Dodgers and Lakers, to enjoying the sunny weather on the golf courses, it does indeed seem to never rain in Southern California.

    Located just minutes from LAX, Rio Hondo Golf Club is conveniently accessible from the South Bay and Orange County. Golf Digest has ranked the course as one of southern California's "Places to Play." The course features tight, tree-lined fairways and subtly contoured greens that are faster than they look. It's not a particularly long layout but the par 3s provide some good length. Golfers will face a variety of challenges throughout, but there is also plenty of scenic respite.
    Opened in 1923, Ojai Valley Inn & Spa Golf Course is one of California's first great courses. Over the decades that the course has been open, it has hosted a number of professional players and celebrities ranging from Arnold Palmer to Will Smith.
    Royal Vista Golf Club offers 27 holes of golf that are played in three different 18-hole combinations. The East/North combination is the longest of the three layouts. The course features elevated tees, narrow fairways lined with trees, and elevated greens, many of which are bordered by deep bunkers.
  • San Francisco

    San Francisco is a favorite destination for travelers all over the world, thanks to a strong mix of cultures, unique attractions and mild weather year round. It's easy to stay busy on a San Francisco vacation, from riding cable cars throughout the city to exploring one of the many unique neighborhoods, each with its own appeal.

    The 18-hole Hiddenbrooke Golf Club in Vallejo, CA is a public golf course that opened in 1995. Designed by Arnold Palmer and Ed Seay, Hiddenbrooke Golf Club measures 6638 yards from the longest tees and has a slope rating of 142 and a 72.
    Nestled at the base of Mount Diablo, Deer Ridge Golf Club wanders through rolling, oak-dappled hills. The course has several challenging holes but the hazards are balanced by more player-friendly elements like wide, forgiving fairways and generous greens. There is also plenty of room off the tees and at just over 6,300 yards it is a manageable length as well.
    Established in 1892, Mare Island Golf Club is the oldest course west of the Mississippi. The course was originally just a nine-hole layout before it was recently expanded to a full 18 holes. Now, the golf course offers two distinct nines. It starts out with a more traditional front nine featuring small greens and tight fairways lined with Eucalyptus trees.
  • Palm Springs

    Desert hotbed Palm Springs anchors the Coachella Valley, a region home to a collection of cities with a wealth of golf communities. The valley is a favorite spot for seasonal residents and retirees, especially those after sunny winters on golf courses in prime, lush and green condition. Between January and April, few spots on earth are better for desert golf!

    Desert Dunes Golf Course has a unique layout that combines a traditional links design with true desert-style golf. The course winds through natural sand dunes that are accented with mature trees and an abundance of native vegetation. It offers one of the most challenging rounds in the valley with narrow fairways, dramatic elevation changes, and fast, sloped greens.
    Located in the heart of the Palm Desert in the Coachella Valley, Woodhaven Country Club offers panoramic views that stretch across the San Jacinto and Santa Rosa Mountains. The golf course has a traditional desert landscape but the stunning mountain views elevate it to a truly unique experience.
    On the Classic Club's scenic landscape, golfers will find a wide variety of trees including olive trees, towering pines, and California pepper, but unlike the many other golf courses in Palm Springs, there isn't a single palm tree.
  • Central Valley

    California's Central Valley stretches over 450 miles through the center of the state and parallels the Pacific Ocean. Also called the "Sacramento Valley," it encompasses such towns as Bakersfield to the south, past Sacramento and Fresno to Stockton at the northern end.

    Ridgemark Golf & Country Club has a peacefully secluded location, tucked away between the mountains and foothills of the Gabilan and Diablo Ranges. San Benito County has been especially hard hit by drought and so to make the best of a situation that's not ideal, the club's two former golf courses were combined into one, more challenging layout.
    Bartley Cavanaugh Golf Course is situated along the banks of the Sacramento River. The course has a diverse layout with a few tough holes, but overall it's player friendly enough to appeal to players of all skill levels. Accuracy and proper club selection are two major factors to scoring well on this golf course.
    Bing Maloney in Sacramento offers both an 18-hole championship golf course an executive nine-hole course known as the Express 9, since you can play it in less than an hour. The 18-hole course has a traditional design with short par 5s and par 3s. Mature oak trees line the fairways and the sloped greens will test your short game skills.
  • Shasta Cascade

    For travelers and outdoor enthusiasts looking to escape the crowds, there's no better area than the Shasta Cascade region of northern California. Located in the shadows of Mount Shasta and the Cascade Mountains, this eight-county area, which makes up one-fifth of the state of California, is much the way it was centuries ago, albeit with a few more towns and a few peaceful golf courses sprinkled into the mix.

    Bailey Creek Golf Course is situated along the shores of Lake Almanor with Mount Lassen serving as the backdrop. The course has a traditional mountain design that is both scenic and challenging.
    The 9-hole River Tasalmi Golf Course in Redding, CA is a semi-private golf course that opened in 1990. Designed by Bill Ralston, River Tasalmi Golf Course measures 4104 yards from the longest tees and has a slope rating of 97 and a 61.
    The 9-hole Churn Creek Golf Course in Redding, CA is a public golf course that opened in 1977. Churn Creek Golf Course measures 6299 yards from the longest tees and has a slope rating of 123 and a 70.3 USGA rating. The course features 3 sets of tees for different skill levels.
  • Inland Empire

    Composed of the Ontario, Riverside and San Bernardino areas, the Inland Empire is the fifth largest urban area in the state of California and quickly becoming one of the most diverse. Although it holds onto to its agricultural roots, which includes the Temecula Wine Region, the area is growing in terms of cultural arts, sports and recreation, including golf.

    California Oaks Golf Club enjoys a stunning backdrop provided by both the San Jacinto Mountains and Temecula Valley, prime southern California wine country. The course sprawls across gently rolling hills, allowing the natural contours of the land to determine the undulation of the greens and placement of the bunkers. The result is a formidable test that is versatile enough to accommodate a wide range of skill levels.
    The Country Club at Soboba Springs was founded in 2004 when the Luiseno Indians purchased the property. It had long been a dream of the tribal leaders to own this golf course, which borders their reservation. The tribe's leaders hired Cary Bickler, a disciple of the course's original designer, Desmond Muirhead, to update the layout and pave the way for it to once again be one of southern California's premier golfing destinations.
    The 18-hole Oak Quarry Golf Club in Riverside, CA is a semi private golf course that opened in 2000. Designed by Dr. Gil Morgan and Schmidt / Curley, Oak Quarry Golf Club measures 7002 yards from the longest tees and has a slope rating of 137 and a 73.
  • Napa/Sonoma

    From wine tasting to redwoods to quaint small towns bursting with arts, shopping and history, the North Coast of California may be the most relaxing region in the state. Here, you can explore the famous Sonoma vineyards, drive a car through a giant Redwood or experience the best of outdoor activities, including hiking, kayaking, river rafting, mountain biking and, of course, golf.

    Nestled in the foothills of Napa Valley, Eagle Vines Vineyards & Golf Club is bordered by endless rows of grapes. Unlike many other vineyard courses that sell their grapes, Eagle Vines produces their own wines. Surrounding the vineyards is a landscape of 200-year-old oak trees and lush, grassy meadows, an ideal setting for golf.
    Established in 1892, Mare Island Golf Club is the oldest course west of the Mississippi. The course was originally just a nine-hole layout before it was recently expanded to a full 18 holes. Now, the golf course offers two distinct nines. It starts out with a more traditional front nine featuring small greens and tight fairways lined with Eucalyptus trees.
    The 9-hole Buckingham Golf & Country Club in Kelseyville, CA is a semi-private golf course that opened in 1955. Designed by James Young, Buckingham Golf & Country Club measures 6216 yards from the longest tees and has a slope rating of 121 and a 69.
  • Monterey Peninsula

    Those who drive the famous Highway 101 up the California coast will agree there is no better ocean drive in the United States -- and perhaps the world. The beauty of the coastline is highlighted by 17-mile drive along the Monterey Peninsula, which passes through beach towns as well as one of the world's most coveted golf vacation destinations.

    The Club at Crazy Horse Ranch (previously known as Salinas Golf & Country Club) tumbles across the rolling hills of Monterey County's countryside. Opened in 1925, the course is one of the area's oldest and over the years it has come to be known as the friendliest club in the area. Originally opened as a nine-hole layout, the now-18-hole course offers a great round of classic golf but the club is hardly what you would call traditional.
    The 18-hole The Tournament Course at Coyote Creek Golf Club in Morgan Hill, CA is a public golf course that opened in 1999. Designed by Jack Nicklaus, The Tournament Course at Coyote Creek Golf Club measures 7027 yards from the longest tees and has a slope rating of 144 and a 74.
    The 18-hole Pajaro Valley Golf Club in Royal Oaks, CA is a public golf course that opened in 1922. Designed by Floyd McFarkland, Pajaro Valley Golf Club measures 6684 yards from the longest tees and has a slope rating of 124 and a 71.