Category Archives: Nevada

Wolf Creek

Wolf Creek Golf Club in Mesquite, NV

Me and CJ

The Stats

Tee Time: October 23, 2016, 1:00, 82 F, sunny

Designer: Dennis Rider, 2000

Playing Partners: CJ Phelan

Tees: Champions, Par 72 (70.9 rating/138 slope/6,309 yards)

Course Handicap: 11 (8.6 index)

Stats: 87 (41-46); 40 putts; 8/14 fairways; 10/18 greens; 2 penalty strokes

The Course

wolf creek golf course mesquite nevada hole 8
The serene setting at #8

Many generations of video games ago (so like, 15 years) Tiger Woods’ EA golf games added in fantasy courses. My research is spotty, but it started in Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2003 when they began adding fantasy courses, fictional settings that had these crazy holes in a mesmerizing setting. They were named Penguin Falls, The Predator, Emerald Dragon and Wallaby Creek, among others.  Then, with Tiger Woods PGA Tour 09, they added a new fantasy course: Wolf Creek. Except this is a real place. It may seem like something only a video game designer could conjure up, but thankfully it was Dennis Rider who brought this fantasy landscape to life just an hour up the road from Sin City.

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Edgewood Tahoe

Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course in Lake Tahoe, NV

Me and CJ
Me and CJ

The Stats

Tee Time: May 23, 2016, 10:50, 48 F, cloudy turning to rain

Designer: George Fazio, 1968

Playing Partners: CJ Phelan, Larry and Mike

Tees: Blue/White Combo, Par 72 (71.2 rating/137 slope/6,610 yards)

Course Handicap: 7 (6.0 index)

Stats: 92 (47-45); 31 putts; 7/14 fairways; 1/18 greens; 2 penalty strokes

The Course

Even in mud season, there’s no better place in the world than in the presence of the sapphire-blue waters of Lake Tahoe. It’s so inspiring here that I set a major portion of my brand new book, Hunt, in this location. You can buy that here, because the more sales, the more golf trips! But anyways…

See, look at that sweet Tahoe setting...
See, look at that sweet Tahoe setting…

It’s nearly Memorial Day and Donner Pass is still getting snow. But ski season’s over now, and the golf course is the next best place to enjoy the outdoors. If I was ever gonna have a bad time golfing, it would’ve been this round. A hurt back on a frigid, breezy, rainy day and trying to keep calm while playing with a creepy, camo-clad Dale Gribble look-a-like who must’ve said six words all day, shot at least 130 and was using a disposable camera? But I had my ever-enthusiastic buddy CJ with me and, even sweeter, the amazing Edgewood Tahoe golf course offering up 18 holes of jaw-dropping alpine scenery. You can never have a bad day at Edgewood. I almost should just stop writing and let the pictures do that talking. Check out how gorgeous the 9th green is below.

Like this view from off the 9th green...
Like this view from off the 9th green…

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Las Vegas National Golf Club

Las Vegas National Golf Club in Las Vegas, NV

Las Vegas National pro shop
The practice green and the pro shop

The Stats

Tee Time: April 19, 2013, 12:40, 76 F, Light wind

Designer: Bert Stamps (1961)

Playing Partners: Mike and Garrett

Tees: Professional, Par 71 (73.5 rating/137 slope/6,721 yards)

Course Handicap: 15 (12.2 index)

Stats: 87 (48-39); 27 putts; 4/13 fairways; 2/18 greens; 2 penalty strokes

The Course

Las Vegas National Hole 17 green
The chip up to the green at 17

I’ll just start this by saying that Las Vegas National Golf Club is awesome. Not only are the grounds steeped in over a half-century of Las Vegas history, but to this day the atmosphere still feels like it’s stuck in the 1960s. It probably would have been better to have an old Kodak film camera to log this round and maybe some persimmon woods to knock around. But at more than 6,700 yards for this par 71, I’ll take advantage of today’s NASA-engineered, 460cc titanium drivers and ultra-forgiving cavity-back irons, because half of the par 3’s come in at more than 200 yards and I’m no Lee Trevino with a 1-iron. In many ways it feels that time has passed this place by, but it takes nothing away from the experience. This is the site of Tiger Woods’ first career PGA Tour victory, the 1996 Las Vegas Invitational (one can only guess what he did with those showgirls afterward…) It’s even crazier to think that it is because of Tiger Woods that the PGA Tour will probably never return here. Within six months of that first victory, Tiger put up his landmark performance at the 1997 Masters. The carnage was so great that the hallowed course in Augusta underwent massive changes to toughen the place up, giving rise to the era of “Tiger-proofing.” Golf soared in popularity. When Tiger won that ’96 Invitational he took home $297,000. The event’s winner in 2012, Ryan Moore, pocketed $810,000. New courses (most of them cookie-cutter) sprouted up like weeds after a spring rain and the equipment industry put so many springboard drivers and rocket golf balls on the market that classics like Las Vegas National got left behind. Just 16 years later, a tour pro would tear this place up, but it is still a great challenge and very refreshing when compared to all the modern course styles in golf today. Continue reading Las Vegas National Golf Club

The Revere Golf Club

The Revere Golf Club – Lexington Course in Henderson, NV

Pat, CJ, Me, Mike, Greg and Brendan

The Stats

Tee Time: October 28, 9:20, 80 F, Calm

Designer: Billy Casper/Greg H. Nash, ASGCA, 1999

Playing Partners: Mike Harvey, Brendan Noonan, CJ Phelan, Greg Ryan, Pat Spomer

Tees: Gold, Par 72 (71.1 rating/133 slope/6,590 yards)

Course Handicap: 14 (11.7 index)

Stats: 95 (44-51); 31 putts; 6/14 fairways; 4/18 greens; 7 penalty strokes

The Course

All I can say after that round is thank goodness I scheduled this course to be last up on the Vegas Trip. Because the Lexington Course at The Revere Golf Club is brutal and will test your resolve. I don’t think any of us brought that A-game this Sunday morning and it ate us all up. I know I’ll need a few days to recover after this shellacking. The best comparison for this course is the pair of 5-star tracks at Troon North in Arizona. Extreme target golf, unplayable desert just yards from the fairway and difficult greens mean a blowup hole is always one poor tee shot away. But ignoring the scorecard, this spot in the hills of Henderson, Nevada south of Las Vegas offers an unforgettable experience. Views of the valley below are abundant and seeing your ball soar above the Vegas skyline is a rush. The course itself is beautiful and very well maintained (still have yet to find a Troon managed course that isn’t in perfect condition). While the first takeaway after a round here is the difficulty, Lexington will test every aspect of your game, from hitting draws and fades off the tee to course management and even deciding whether to fly it on to the green or run it up. It is as exhausting mentally as it is physically. Continue reading The Revere Golf Club

Paiute Golf Resort

Paiute Golf Resort – Wolf Course in Las Vegas, NV

Pat, CJ, Mike, Greg, Brendan and Me

The Stats

Tee Time: October 27, 1:57, 75 F, Calm

Designer: Pete Dye, 2001

Playing Partners: Mike Harvey, Brendan Noonan, CJ Phelan, Greg Ryan, Pat Spomer

Tees: Yellow, Par 72 (70.7 rating/126 slope/6,483 yards)

Course Handicap: 13 (11.7 index)

Stats: 88 (44-44); 37 putts; 8/14 fairways; 8/18 greens; 0 penalty strokes

The Course

A thirty minute drive north from the glitz and glamour, the neon lights and ringing slot machines, and the fishnet stockings and sleeve tattoos of Las Vegas places you at Paiute Golf Resort. Close enough to be a stop on any Vegas trip and a welcome change from the atmosphere of the Strip. After pulling up to the bag drop (where some may be later than others if they got caught speeding…), just stand up and take a deep breath of fresh air to let your lungs filter out all the Marlboros you inhaled walking out of the casino. Wander around the massive pro shop and enjoy the sheer luxury Paiute has to offer. From then on it’s all business. Get the clubs on the cart and head off to whichever range is closest (they have 2). I suggest dialing in the short irons before getting a feel for the speed of the greens, because those are the areas that will be taxed most. Continue reading Paiute Golf Resort