top of page

monterey bay area 

Old Del Monte


Poppy hills

quail lodge

spanish bay


pacific grove

monterey pines

Laguna Seca


De Laveaga

pajaro valley

the club at crazy horse (formerly salinas country club)

salinas fairways

san juan oaks


eagle ridge

monterey-santa cruz-Pajaro dunes-salinas-holister

Old Del Monte  Monterey

Address:  1300 Sylvan Road  Monterey, Ca.  93940  Phone:  831-373-2700  Website:

It has been a very long time since I have played Old Del Monte.  There is a lot of history here which stats with the fact that it is supposedly the oldest golf course in continuous operation west of the Mississippi.  The course is the smallest and most economical to play of the courses owned by the Pebble Beach Corporation. I have only played the course once so I don't remember much about it.  I do remember that the fairways are pretty tight and the greens are small as with most older golf courses. It is very playable and always in great shape.  Yes, there are trees-mature tall cypress and pine trees that line the fairways.  I do remember it was a sporty golf course an a lot of fun to play. 


Blue  6375 YRDS.  Rating 71.6  Slope 131:  White  6085 YRDS.  Men  Rating 70.4  Slope 132  Women  Rating 76.0  Slope 132:  Red  5435 YRDS.  Men  Rating 66.8  Slope 123  Women  Rating 72.5  Slope 123 

Green Fees:  $40-$110  Plus Cart

Range:  No

Poppy hills golf course  pebble beach

Address:  3200 Lopez Road  Pebble Beach, Ca.  93953  Phone:  831-622-8239  Website: 

First off, Poppy Hills is on the 17 Mile Drive but it is not on the ocean like Pebble Beach or Spyglass Hill.  It is up in the hills above the ocean and there is really only one play on the course that you can see the ocean.  Don't let that keep you away though.  This is golf at its finest.  The course is the headquarters for The Northern California Golf Association and was the first golf course owned by a State Golf Organization.  A few holes on the course were redone just recently to soften it a bit and also make it more water use efficient.  Its a tough course, but I like it.  There is water and of course-you are in a forest naturally-tall mature trees.  The greens are generous but FAST. If you can get on-its kind of hard because there always is some sort of NCGA tournament happening-it is well worth hit but bring your "A" game because you are going to need it.

tees:  Par 71

4 Poppies  6872 YRDS.  Men  Rating 73.0  Slope 140  Women  Rating 78.5  Slope 146:  3 Poppies  6501 YRDS.  Men  Rating 71.2  Slope 135  Women  Rating 76.3  Slope 142:  2 Poppies  6010 YRDS.  Men  Rating 68.6  Slope 131  Women  73.7  Slope 135:  1 Poppy  5415 YRDS.  Men  Rating 66.0  Slope 125  Women  Rating 70.1  Slope 125  

Green Fees:  $50-$225  The Course Allows Walkers

Range:  Yes

The Links At Spanish Bay  Pebble Beach

Address:  2700 17 Mile Drive  Pebble Beach, Ca.  93953  Phone:  800-654-9300  Website:

The Links At Spanish Bay is part of The Pebble Beach Corporation's stable of courses.  It is their newest course which sits right on the ocean.  Most of the holes are on or near the ocean but the course does go inland for several holes.  One of my favorite holes is the short par 3 thirteenth hole which is well bunkered and you have to hit over a baranca.  This course is tough, very tough.  But throughout your round when you are being brought to your knees by the course you think, "I am being beaten up badly here but I don't mind because the views and the scenes on this course are too beautiful to miss."  It is kind of a great place to enjoy the game of golf but unquestionably enjoy the scenery and the sound of the crashing waves on the shore.  Its worth it. 


Blue  6826  YRDS.  Men  Rating 74.0  Slope 140:  Gold  6430 YRDS.  Men  Rating 72.1  Slope 136:  White  5980 YRDS.  Men  Rating 70.4  Slope 128  Women  Rating 75.8  Slope 136:  Red  5323 YRDS.  Women  Rating 72.7  Slope 128   

Green Fees:  $280

Range:  No

Bayonet/Blackhorse  Seaside

address:  1 McClure Way  Seaside, Ca.  93955  Phone:  831-899-7271  Website:


Check Out Our YouTube Video:

Bayonet/Blackhorse is located on the former Ft. Ord Army Base in the hills above Monterey at Seaside, California.  The views from the course and the bay below will take your breath away as will the beauty of these two distinct courses.  They remodeled both courses a few years back and improved Bayonet making it more playable but they completely ruined what used to be the more fun Blackhorse.  Don't get me wrong, I like both courses but Bayonet has become the course I like better of the two.  Both course have mature cyprus tree lined fairways which are pretty wide, but Blackhorse has more fairway bunkers to contend with. Greens on both courses are about average in size, but the greens on Blackhorse have more contour and undulations. Expect the greens to be fast and with some good breaks.  If you are in the Monterey area, I would highly recommend Bayonet and Blackhorse.  You can check out our YouTube video to get more of a flavor of Bayonet.  



Black  7104 YRDS.  Men  Rating 74.8  Slope 139:  Blue  6641 YRDS.  Men  Rating 71.5  Slope 135:  White  5945 YRDS.  Men  Rating 69.4  Slope 131:  Red  5229 YRDS.  Women  Rating 70.2  Slope 123  


Black  7024 YRDS.  Men  Rating 73.7  Slope 136:  Blue  6533 YRDS.  Men  Rating 71.5  Slope 131:  White  5910 YRDS.  Men  Rating 68.8  Slope 125:  Red  5084 YRDS.  Women  Rating 69.4  Slope 118   

Green Fees:  $65-$160  Plus Cart

Range:  Yes

Pacific Grove Golf Links  Pacific Grove

Address:  77 Asilomar Boulevard  Pacific Grove, Ca.  93950  Phone:  831-648-5775  Website:


Check Out Our YouTube Video:

Did I ever tell you that my very most favorite course on the face of the planet is Pacific Grove?  Well, I'm telling you now.  I love this course.  Its not long at only 5727 Yards from the back tees.  It has the most breathtaking view you can find anywhere. The front nine is a park style course that winds through the cypress trees on the Monterey side of Pacific Grove.  You get some good views of Monterey and Monterey Bay, but that's just the beginning.  The back nine is a links style paradise of sea, sand and wind.  The back nine is built into the dunes just steps from the crashing waves of Monterey BAy at Point Pinos.  In fact, you can see the Point Pinos Lighthouse just about on every hole. Although the course is not long, it is a challenge.  The greens are very small and you have trees on the front nine.  This is truly golf heaven.  Check out our YouTube video to catch more of the flavor of Pacific Grove.


Blue  Yards.  Men  Rating 67.9  Slope 113:  White  5571 YRDS.  Men  Rating 67.0  Slope 110  Women  Rating 72.3  Slope 120:  Red  5305 YRDS.  Women  Rating 70.2  Slope 116

gren fees:  $46-$63  Plus Cart

Range:  Yes

Monterey Pines  Monterey

Address:  1250 Garden Rd.  Monterey, Ca.  93940  Phone:  831-656-2167  Website: › programs 

Shhh...Don't tell anybody but Monterey Pines is the best kept secret as far as a golf course is concerned on the Monterey Peninsula. This little gem is located above the Monterey County Fairgrounds and was limited to public play as it was run by the Navy as part of The Monterey Naval Postgraduate School. Its still part of the Navy but the course has been opened to the general public. I have to say that is one of the few great decisions the Federal Government has made.  This is a fun little course and even though it is short,  you can get yourself into a lot of trouble.  The greens are small and fast.  The course places a premium on accurate shots.  As far as the layout, it is basically flat, but there are some subtle elevation changes. The course fell into disrepair just after the Navy opened it to the public and was redone after an admiral, who was an avid golfer, led the charge to renovate the course and improve it.  Thank God he did.      

Tees:  Par 69

Blue 5409 YRDS.  Men  Rating 66.3  Slope 111  Women  Rating 70.5  Slope 122:  White  4878 YRDS.  Men  Rating 64.1  Slope 105  Women Rating 67.6  Slope 107:  Red  4513  Men  Rating 62.9  Slope 100  Women  Rating 65.2  Slope 104

Green Fees:  $19-$40  Plus Cart

Range:  Yes

Laguna Seca golf resort  Monterey

address:  10521 York Rd.  Monterey, Ca.  93940  Phone:  831-373-3701  Website: 

This course is located outside Monterey as you are going to Salinas on Highway 68.  The clubhouse is located on top of a hill and you would think that the course would be hilly.  In fact, number 1 is downhill and numbers 9 and 18 are uphill and go back to the clubhouse.  However, the lies on this layout are basically gentle if you are shooting uphill or downhill.  Number 10 is an interesting hole where the fairway slopes rather decidedly to the right and you must place your drive to the left in order to score well.  I like number 11 which is a dogleg right from an elevated tee, but the drive can be tricky in that there are bushes to the left and a hillside to the right.  The green is well protected by a couple of mature oaks.  Most of the front is pretty straight up. The course is a lot of fun to play and the green fees are fairly reasonable plus you are away from the coast and up in the hills a bit so it tends to be warmer and has less fog.   

tees:  Par 71

Black  6174 YRDS.  Men  Rating 70.2  Slope 129:  Blue  6007 YRDS.  Men  Rating 69.6 Slope 126:  White  5863 YRDS.  Men  Rating 67.9  Slope 122:  Green  Women  Rating 71.2  Slope 125:  Red  4332 YRDS.  Women  Rating 65.0  Slope 110  

green fees:  $40-$70  Plus Cart

Range:  Yes

Quail Lodge Golf Club  Carmel 

Address:  8205 Valley Greens Drive  Carmel, Ca.  93923  Phone:  931-620-8808  Website:

I got to play this course in an NCGA event after playing Poppy Hills.  I did not find it difficult but it did have some interesting holes.  I really don't remember much about the course it was so long ago that I played it.  I do know that the course was basically flat and there was water.  The fairways were pretty generous and the greens putted well.  The course has been updated so I don't have much info on the course after its renovation. There is a lodge on the property with some pretty good stay and play packages available.  It was a fun course to play, I do remember that but I am a little fuzzy on the specifics.   



Black  6464 YRDS.  Rating 71.3  Slope 128:  Black/Orange Combo  6256 YRDS.  Rating 71.3  Slope 126:  Orange  6051 YRDS.  Rating 69.6  Slope 124:  Orange/Blue Combo  5714 YRDS.  Rating 67.9  Slope 120:  Blue  5476 YRDS.  Rating 67.2  Slope 116:  Blue/Green Combo  5273 YRDS.  Rating 66.1  Slope 115:  Green 5009 YRDS.  Rating 65.0  Slope 114 


Blue  5476 YRDS.  Rating 71.9  Slope 125:  Blue/Green Combo 5351 YRDS.  Rating 71.3  Slope 125:  Green  5009 YRDS.  Rating 69.4  Slope 119 

Green Fees:  $100-$185

Range:  Yes 

Pasatiempo golf course  santa cruz

address:  18 Clubhouse Rd.  Santa Cruz, Ca.  95060  Phone:  831-459-9155  Website:

Pasatiempo was designed by the famed golf course architect Alister MacKenzie who also designed Cypress Point and Agusta National.  Supposedly this was his favorite course design and he made his residence on the 6th fairway.  His ashes were also spread behind the 16th green.  This is a great example of his golf course design genius.  He was a camouflage expert during World War I and so he used a lot of that philosophy in designing his courses.  Bunkers are not where you think they are but are either short of the green or surround the green.  Speaking of the greens, they are fast and true.  The course is basically flat, but there are some slight elevation changes and forced carries over barancas.  The 18th is probably one of the most fun par 3's I have played and it plays over a canyon.   

Tees:  Men Par 70  Women 72

Gold (Championship) 6500 YRDS.  Men  Rating 72.5  Slope 141:  White (Middle) 6125 YRDS.  Men  Rating 70.8  Slope 134  Women  Rating 75.8  Slope 142:  Green (Forward)  5685 YRDS.  Men  Rating 68.5  Slope 132  Women  Rating 73.3  Slope 135:  Red (Hollins)  4366 YRDS.  Men  Rating 63.2  Slope 117  Women  Rating 67.0  Slope 117 

Green fees:  $260 Plus Cart

Range:  No (Short Game Practice Area) 

De Laveaga Golf and Lodge  Santa Cruz

Address:  401 Upper Park Road  Santa Cruz, Ca.  95065  Phone:  831-423-7212  Website:

DlaveagaCrazyHorse 062.jpg

Check Out Our YouTube Video:

De Laveaga is located in the hills above Santa Cruz.  The course is hilly and there are a couple of barancas you have to negotiate.  It took a few times for me to play this course before I could appreciate it and almost love it.  the fairways are lined by tall eucalyptus trees and the greens are fairly small.  I love the par threes here, especially the three that are on the front nine.  If you play here look out for the number 10 hole as it is a doozy.  Your drive has to find a very narrow part of the fairway about 200 yards out.  On the left is a canyon and to the right is out of bounds.  This is probably the only hole on the course that I don't like and think it is kind of unfair, Oh well.  The fairways are fairly level to hit off of although you will find yourself with many uphill, downhill and side hill lies.  Its a great track. 

tees:  Par 70

Blue  6049 YRDS.  Men  Rating 70.1 Slope 134:  White  5659 YRDS.  Men  Rating 68.5  Slope 129  Women  Rating 73.4  Slope 136:  Red  5081 YRDS.  Men  Rating 66.1  Slope 119  Women  Rating 70.5  Slope 122 

Green Fees:  $30-$60  Plus Cart

Range:  Yes

Pajaro Valley  Royal Oaks

address:  967 Salinas Rd.  Royal Oaks, Ca.  95076  Phone:  831-724-3851  Website:

To be honest I have to say that it has been a long time that I have played Pajaro Valley and I don't remember much about it.  I played it with my daughter when we were together at a conference in Monterey and had a window of time to play golf.  We chose Pajaro Valley because I had never been there and had driven by it several times but never played it.  I do remember that it has some picturesque holes that are near the Elkhorn slough.  I remember it being a pretty good track and we had fun playing it.  My Monterey golf friends tell me that its not in such good shape and after looking at the green fee structure it looks like it is a little overpriced. That's a shame because I think I would enjoy playing it again.  


Blue  6432 YRDS.  Men  Rating 70.6  Slope 125:  White  6097 YRDS.  Men  Rating 69.4  Slope 119  Women  Rating 74.7  Slope 125:  Yellow  5747 YRDS.  Men  Rating 67.9  Slope 116  Women  Rating 72.7  Slope 121:  Red  5426 YRDS.  Men  Rating 66.4  Slope 110  Women  Rating 71.1  Slope 118

Green Fees:  $20-$55  Plus Cart

Range:  Yes

the club at crazy horse ranch  (formerly salinas golf and country club)  Salinas

Address:  475 San Juan Grade Road  Salinas, Ca.  93906  Phone:  831-449-1526  Website:

DlaveagaCrazyHorse 224.jpg

Check Out Our YouTube Video:

Salinas Country Club decided a few years back that they wanted to open their doors to public play on a limited basis and go semi-private.  They still offer memberships but now you can play one of the finest formerly private golf courses in the area.  This course is immaculately maintained.  There are trees and the greens are very small.  The course is on gently rolling hilly terrain, but the course is very playable.  My favorite hole is the signature hole 187 Yard par 3 fifth which to call it a downhill tee shot is an understatement.  The hole drops about 100 feet from an elevated tee to the green.  There are a few level spots on the course but generally you will be hitting off a gently rolling fairway.  There are bunkers so be prepared for some sand play, but they are not that intrusive.  Check out our YouTube Video and you can get a better flavor of the course.  


Blue (Triple Crown)  6106 YRDS.  Men  Rating 70.1  Slope 130  Women  Rating 75.8  Slope 132:  White (Belmont)  5883 YRDS.  Men  Rating 69.1  Slope 128  Women  Rating 75.1  Slope 130:  Red (Derby)  5514 YRDS.  Men  Rating 66.9  Slope 122  Women  Rating 73.0  Slope 125:  Gold (Preakness)  4952 YRDS.  Men  Rating 65.2  Slope 119  Women  Rating 70.1  Slope 120

green fees:  $65-$75

Range:  Yes

Salinas Fairways  Salinas

address:  45 Skyway Blvd.  Salinas, Ca.  93905  Phone:  831-758-4653  Website:

This course is a kick in the butt to play.  What's not to like?  It is fairly flat and you have trees, water, bunkers and small greens to contend with, oh and don't forget the wind and airplanes landing on the runways at the airport right next door to the golf course. This course is a hidden gem.  The front nine and back nine are a bit different in that the front nine"s fairways are gently contoured because the land is a bit rolling.  However, the contouring is not extreme.  The back nine is basically flat, but there is more water.  The greens here are small and fairly well bunkered. There are some fun par 3's here as well.  As I said, it can get windy here in the afternoons so if you can get an early tee time that would be an advantage to scoring.. If your front nine is not going well or you are not playing well, you can always pause and watch the airplane fly over you and land at the airport.  course is a kick in the butt to play


Blue  6479 YRDS.  Men  RAting 70.5  Slope 121:  White  6247 YRDS.  Men  Rating 69.3  Slope 120  Women  Rating 75.8  Slope 127:  Gold  5486 YRDS.  Men  Rating 65.8  Slope 112  Women  Rating 70.6  Slope 117:  Red  5168 YRDS.  Women  Rating 69.0  Slope 111  

green fees:  $11-$37  Plus Cart

Range:  Yes

San Juan Oaks  Hollister

address:  3828 Union Rd.  Hollister, Ca.  95023  Phone:  831-636-6114  Website:

I had some very high hopes when I found out I was going to play San Juan Oaks for the first time.  On my many travels to Monterey I passed the course as it sits a few miles off State Route 156 and you can see the course.  I had stopped by the course on a couple of occasions just to kind of check it out, but had never played it.  Finally, I got the chance.  I don't like the course after playing it.  There are too many forced carries on the course and the average player isn't given enough "bail out" areas if you can't carry the barancas that you are forced to carry.  The back nine and front nine are very different as the front nine is basically flat, although the terrain is gently rolling and the back nine is hilly.  Most of the forced carries are on the back nine. One last thing I will say about San Juan Oaks is that the wind blows and in the afternoon it blows hard. I would like to play the course again but from a different set of tees.  


Black  7092 YRDS.  Men  Rating 74.6  Slope 141:  Blue  6712 YRDS.  Men  Rating 72.9  Slope 136:  White  6342 YRDS.  Men  Rating 71.2  Slope 130  Women  Rating 76.9  Slope 135:  Gold  5785 YRDS.  Men  Rating 68.6  Slope 125  Women  Rating 74.1  Slope 134:  Red  4770 YRDS.  Men  Rating 64.0  Slope 116  Women  Rating 69.2  Slope 119   

green fees:  $25-$110  Plus Cart

Range:  Yes

Ridgemark  Hollister

address:  3800 Airline Highway  Hollister, Ca.  Phone:  831-637-1000  Website:

This course has been suffering an identity crisis.  It doesn't know whether it is a resort destination with a lodge on property or just a golf course that happens to have a lodge that you can stay at.  Golf and lodging packages are available but from what I understand is the lodge is kind of old and tired.  From what I hear there is a pretty good restaurant on site.  The facility used to have two courses, The Diablo and The Gabilan. The two courses have since been melded into one with holes being closed on both courses and others left in play to form the one course.  I have heard from many players that the new layout is confusing.  Another thing I have heard is that the course is not in great shape either.  I can't confirm this because I haven't been to the course since they consolidated the two courses.  I do remember enjoying the course and it did have some interesting holes.  As it stands right now, this course is a big question mark for me.


Blue  6920 YRDS.  Men  Rating 73.1  Slope 130:  White  6393 YRDS.  Men  Rating 70.7  Slope 125  Women  Rating 76.2  Slope 133:  Gold  6014 YRDS.  Men  Rating 69.1  Slope 119  Women  Rating 74.1  Slope 126:  Red  5666 YRDS.  Men  Rating 67.1  Slope 117  Women  Rating 72.1  Slope 120    

green fees:  $24-$65  Plus Cart

Range:  Yes

Eagle Ridge  Gilroy

address:  2591 Club Drive  Gilroy, Ca.  95020  Phone:  408-846-4531  Website:

Eagle Ridge 032.jpg

I really don't mean to knock Johnny Miller.  I met him at a golf tournament one year and he is a very nice guy.  He just has problems designing golf courses.  This one is no different, although it is a pretty neat golf course-until you get to number 13.  I actually like this golf course, or at least most of it.  Its built in the gently rolling hills above Gilroy, California.  You do get a variety of lies but the course is by no means unfair.  It is playable and enjoyable.  The fairways are lined with mature oaks and pines.  In some cases you have a creek to contend with and on many holes if you stray from the fairways you have lost your ball in a canyon that goes alongside the fairway.  The course is lush and green with the greens being fairly large but "Johnny Miller" undulating.  I would play it again, it was pretty enjoyable. 


Black  7005 YRDS.  Men  Rating 74.5  Slope 145:  Blue 6665 YRDS.  Men  Rating 73.3  Slope 141:  White  6290  Men  Rating 71.6  Slope 134  Women  Rating 76.8  Slope 143:  Yellow  5959 YRDS.  Men  Rating 69.9  Slope 131  Women  Rating 75.2  Slope 138:  Green  5546 YRDS.  Women  Rating 73.3  Slope 133:  Burgundy  5102 YRDS.  Women  Rating 70.7  Slope 125  

green fees:  $30-$99

Range:  Yes

bottom of page