The golf is hot, hot, hot at the La Quinta Resort & Club, SilverRock, Desert Willow and more in California's Coachella Valley
LA QUINTA, Calif. – I found myself staring up a lot during today’s round of golf at SilverRock Resort.
It’s hard to focus on the slick subtle greens when the Santa Rosa Mountains loom so close (check out the photo above). Their rocky faces appear especially gorgeous in the morning light before the heat of the desert starts to cook the skin.
My first visit to the Coachella Valley has been a sweet one. Luckily, the temperatures have been tolerable for golf, hovering in the high 80s. I’ve teed it up at three of the best municipal courses in the country. The two courses I played yesterday at Desert Willow Golf Resort, the Mountain View and Firecliff, complement each other nicely. KemperSports does an outstanding job running that 36-hole facility. Firecliff (see the photo below) ranks 33rd among the nation’s top municipal courses by Golfweek.
SilverRock, one of the former host courses of the old Bob Hope Classic (now the Humana Challenge) from 2008-2011, ranks a tad higher at no. 26 nationally by Golfweek. City of La Quinta residents have it made, paying only $55 to play such a rock-star course. The par 5s are fantastic and the back nine par 3s memorable. I still can’t fathom how Bubba Watson shot a course-record 62 at the 2010 Bob Hope.
Tomorrow, I get a crack at the region’s best Troon Golf-run course, The Classic Club, another former Hope host.
Sadly, I can’t play golf at the fab La Quinta Resort & Club where I’m staying. The four nearby PGA West courses are booked for the Golf Channel Am Tour National Championships. I’ll be covering the tournament the next four days, watching mid- to high-handicap guys like me try to win a national championship. It should be fun. Secretly, though, I’ll be jealous, watching people tee it up on courses I’m itching to play.
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