Wednesday, March 9, 2016
Los Angeles has a lot of courses in all varying sizes. Some are very short, no more than a pitching wedge required-type course. Some are regulation length and some even host major professional golf championships. There are a few courses in-between all of these, "I'm not a girl, not quite a woman" courses and I played a super enjoyable one the other day, Alhambra Golf Course.
The geography of the course is pretty impressive. No houses ring any fairways and there is a killer practice facility here. The course is also very engaging so much so that if I lived closer to Alhambra, this would be my go to golf destination most nights.
The course is short, no doubt about that. Many of the par 4's measure 280-300 yards in length but it is a well maintained course. They actually closed off portions of the fairways to allow them to recover to a higher playability standard. Even though it is short, it is entertaining and one of the most interesting features are the forced draws the course makes you hit.
For the most part, courses are designed with right handers who slice the ball in mind. I haven't seen a course in some time actually force you to go right-to-left like Alhambra does and it was a great challenge. Even if you do go right, there is enough room and trees are thinned enough to make recovery shots possible.
Apparently a lot of golfers use electric carts at the course which, given how short it is, was very perplexing although my playing partner said its because the backside is so hilly. And hilly it is!
While most could do these hills by walking them, I definitely got the point on why some regulars would want carts. Still the hills weren't that bad and added even more layers of challenge the course. Most executive-type courses basically require no more than a decent 3-5 wood and then some command of your wedges or shorter irons. Alhambra adds that but stretches all aspects of your game so I was cleaning a lot more clubs after the round than I was expecting.
Finally, Alhambra knows they are a short course and asks you to play accordingly, meaning no round there should take more than 4 hours and I love that pace of play mantra! There are a lot of courses in LA that are on my bucket list and Alhambra was one of them and I am so glad I checked it off the list!
For more info on Alhambra: http://www.alhambragolf.com/