If you have traveled around a bit in your golfing life you will know that there are major differences between golfing on the East and the West coasts. Bentgrass vs. Poa Annua; lush green golf vs baked out fairways; etc. etc. Having played almost exclusively on the West Coast for the last 3 years I had gotten used to the course conditions out here until I ran into Altadena golf club and thought I was in Maine.
Sure, I don't think Maine has been this sunny in its entire life and has a lot less palm trees
but darnit if I didn't feel like I was back on the East Coast at a cheap but enjoyable 9 holer that I played with my dad. Growing up I wasn't exactly playing National Golf Links of America or Bethpage Black every weekend but courses like Cedar River, Rainbow Golf Club and Hillcrest.
Altadena is very much in this East Coast vein. A little ragged on the edges sure but fun, fast and the right amount of challenging. When you have a course that has par 4's longer than its par 5, you know you are in for an interesting layout.
Exhibit A are the par 3s; all uphill and all tough with a variety of shots to get you on the green.
Exhibit B are the wonderfully long par 4s that force you to shape shots and question your sanity on how the fairways slope when very well hit tee shots start running toward the trees.
The course even has some relaxing benches that remind me of certain East Coast tracks and were always well positioned to be the shade (a must for West Coast courses).
Are the greens slow and the fairways threadbare in places? You betcha. Are guys wearing jeans and weirdly starting on the 6th hole cutting in front of you? Sure why not!
Since golf is so expensive even for "beater" courses, I made a resolution over the last year only to play the best that I could afford. That being said Altadena (and Roosevelt) are the exceptions to that rule, here I will pay some dough any time to play these tracks!
For more info on Altadena check out here: http://parks.lacounty.gov/wps/portal/dpr/ThingsToDo/Golf/Altadena_Golf_Course