Friday, December 4, 2009

Palm Springs - Part 1 of 3

We got back on Wed night and I gotta say that we had a great golf vacation! I'm going to break down our trip into three posts, two course reviews per installment.

We left Vancouver 11/26. The new Canada RAV Line was an awesome means of getting to the Airport. We landed in Palm Springs at 11:00am, picked up our rental car and we were checked into our hotel by 11:45am. Pretty damn fast! We grabbed a quick lunch and then ended up at Cimmaron, which was a 10 minute drive, to try and get some range action in. We ended up getting out on their short course (Pebble) for $25 (seventeen par 3's and one par 4). The greens were super slow but it was still pretty fun and a nice little primer.

Neither of us had ever experienced Black Friday so we decided to wake up at 11:00pm and drive down to Cabazon to check out the outlet malls. What a terrible idea. As we drove down the I-10 westward, we saw the traffic coming from LA and knew we were in for trouble. All the parking lots were full. The residences of the few houses that were near by had chairs in front of their homes and were selling parking for $10. We were fortunate enough to find a spot. I couldn't believe how many people were there and the line ups to get into the stores were ridiculous. The longest I saw was the Coach store... it must have been 500 deep. We checked out several stores and bought a few things but in the end, we came back later in the week as we were going to be golfing out this way.

11/27. Westin Mission Hills- Peter Dye course. The Westin Mission Hills is a 36 hole facility that is run by Troon, which typically means excellent service and amazing course conditions. We booked our 11:34 tee time through's "name your price" for $68 per player.

The course itself was fun, challenging and in great condition. The greens were smooth and fast. Unfortunately, they had fivesomes in front of us which lead to a 5+ hour round. Totally brutal! For that reason alone, I doubt I'll ever play there again. I don't understand why there was no marshal to maintain a good pace of play. Totally sucked. There's also about a 1000 houses lining the course. I did have my biggest drive of the vacation on hole 9 (300 yards) and also birdied the hole. My friend Paul hit two flags from 90+ yards out during the round as well!

11/28. Indian Wells - Players course. The Indian Wells Golf Resort is a 36 hole facility with many excellent reviews. We booked our 10:50 tee time through's "name your price" for $76 per player.

When I first walk into their clubhouse, I was totally floored... super nice facility! They have a Callaway Performance Center which looked pretty high tech and thorough. Their washroom even had a strange waterfall in front of the mirror at the sinks. The course conditions were amazing. The greens were super fast with lots of deceiving undulations. A fun and challenging track. The GPS on the cart was nice as a first time player at the course. In contrast to Fridays round, there were no houses lining the course. We finished in 4 hours, 40 minutes. I'd definitely play this course again. I birdied the first hole by placing my approach 1" from the hole. Great start!

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