Besides a challenge, what is the most important thing about a golf course? Scenery, of course. The backdrop and landscape surrounding the links is just as critical as the care of the greens, and the High Sierra offers some of the best landscape in the world! If you’re looking for your next golf destination, look no further than golfing in the High Sierra.
Compared to other destinations, the golf season in Lake Tahoe may be short, but when the snow melts and the grass turns into its emerald hue, there’s nowhere better. Its cool days and dry sunny weather are like no other golfing mecca in the world. With a range of courses that celebrate everything from mountain scenery to Rat Pack history, all types of golfers can find an incredible experience here.
On the northern banks of Lake Tahoe, there are six championship golf courses and four executive ones to pick from. While quieter in reputation compared to its celebrity cousin in the south, the Incline Village championship course, designed by the famed Robert Trent Jones Jr., is a must for any serious golfer. The layout features many jaw-dropping views of the jewel of the Sierra as well as fairways lined with the legendary pines surrounding Tahoe. If you’re looking instead to get in a quick round, the historic nine holer’s of Old Brockway and Tahoe City golf course are great options as well. To learn more about what golf courses are available in the area, check out Tahoe North’s website.
Just a bit outside of the Lake Tahoe basin is the historic railroad town of Truckee, California. Set on the banks of the Truckee River, this town might be considered pound for pound the best mountain-golf destination in North America. With over nine courses to choose from, the options are endless. A pair of the stars are the sister courses of Gray’s Crossing and Old Greenwood. The Old Greenwood course is designed by none other than Jack Nicklaus. While Ornery Jack is nowhere to be found, his keen eye sure is. Just like the other courses in the region, the scenery “pars” well with the layout. There’s enough challenge to keep you on your toes but not so much that you’ll be scowling at your clubs.
Nestled in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada range is Calaveras County. A place with cozy towns, tall pine trees, deep blue skies and of course amazing golf. Here’ you’ll find the award-winning Saddle Creek Golf Resort near Copperopolis. Receiving numerous awards from publications such as U.S. Golf Digest & Golfweek Magazine, its location offers you dramatic views of the Sierra and Yosemite. Rated 4.5 stars by U.S. Golf Digest, it is one of the top three highest rated golf courses in California.
From there, leap your way to Greenhorn Creek Resort near Angels Camp. This Robert Trent Jones Jr. re-designed course wanders its way through rolling hills that were once mined during the Gold Rush era. Featuring century old oak trees, scenic vistas and unique man-made hazards like a stone farmer’s wall, it’ll challenge you but leave you smiling. Be sure to check out the Southern Gold Country Itinerary that the folks at Calaveras County created. It’ll make you want to throw the clubs in the trunk and head straight there.
Golfing in the High Sierra isn’t your typical golf trip. Perhaps it’s the quaint towns, invigorating mountain air or maybe the elevation. Who knows exactly… but we think it makes the perfect recipe for your next golfing adventure.
Author: Alex Silgalis
Alex Silgalis is an outdoors travel writer who enjoys snowboarding, mountain biking, or having a cold one from a local mountain brewery. See more of Alex’s work at https://localfreshies.com
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