When you think of courses in California, you think of the ones at the ends of the state. The beautiful tracks on the Monterey Peninsula and the awesome desert courses in SoCal. The middle of the state doesn't get as much love but hopefully that will change with more people discovering courses like the River Course at Alisal.
While you would think there is more than one course given the name, there is but one and the one course is a beautiful, minimalistic track with oak trees strategically placed and hard as a rock greens which makes shot placement and links-style golf a premium. So many times on this course you had to play for a 20 yard roll out on the green.
The course was pretty baked on the edges due to the ongoing drought
but it was green where it counts and the fairways were in great shape.
The greens didn't just inspire links-style golf but so did the wind. The wind was howling that day, with half the holes going into the wind and half with it.
Want to see how windy it was? Check it out!
The thing about playing in SoCal is that there is rarely any weather so it comes up and knocks you in the face its fun to try out your game against it.
My favorite hole was the number one handicap hole on the course (the hardest) and it was INTO the wind.
This thing was a brute! I hit driver, 3 iron, sand wedge and had a putt for par but blew it. It would have been one of my toughest pars I ever made but the fact that I was close was gratifying.
The course has cool, hidden water features and while it is straightforward in some ways, I bet playing this course two or three times you can really dial in all of the cool little quirks of the place.
Overall this was a fun course, albeit just too far from Los Angeles to justify the 2 plus hour trip. Still, if you are in Solvang or the Santa Barbara area, you should check it out!
More Info Here: http://www.rivercourse.com/-course(2)