A Golfer’s Dream – Spectacular Courses Await
By Steve Phillips
Golf reigns supreme among time-honored outdoor sports in and around Park City. Several world-class courses lie within a few minutes drive of historic Main Street. Here is an introduction to many of the amazing courses awaiting adventurous golfers.
Soldier Hollow Golf Courses (public)
The Soldier Hollow Golf Course, in Midway, is actually a complex of two 18-hole courses, both open to the public. Part of the sprawling Wasatch Mountain State Park, the three words that best describe the courses: views, diversity, long.
The 7700-yard “Gold” course winds through stands of native scrub oak trees and grasses, it features dramatic elevation changes on almost every hole.
The lower, flatter “Silver” course is a parkland/meadowland layout, described as the “tamer” of the two. Choosing the proper tee box depending on skill level is key for players here.
Park Meadows Country Club
Designed by golf giant Jack Nicklaus, this signature course features wide fairways and abundant bunkers. It was named one of the top 10 courses in the state by Golf Digest magazine. The three words that best describe it: classic, sandy, and unpredictable.
“You can walk it. Play it a couple of times a week and there’s still variety and excitement. Precise approach shots are key,” said Eric Johnson, PGA Director of Golf at the Meadows.
Tuhaye At Talisker Club
This magnificent Mark O’Meara-designed course lies at the heart of the Talisker Club Tuhaye community. The three words that best describe it: scenic, natural, wide. Respecting the setting, O’Meara chose to blend the course into the natural landscape rather than bulldoze it. The fair-ways wind through stands of sagebrush, groves of scrub oak trees and native grasses. Many of the tee shots look “scary,” according to Thomas Barksdale, director of golf at Tuhaye. He also says some tee shots on the back nine must clear an intimidating series of ravines.
This unorthodox course is literally carved out of a mountainside adjacent to Vail’s sprawling Canyons ski resort. The three words that best describe the course: vertical, challenging, fun.
Canyons Director of Golf Justin Johnson counsels first-timers at the course to leave their drivers in the bag, just have fun and don’t bother to keep score.
There are actually two world-class courses at Promontory, both designed by icons of golf. The three words that best describe them: character, longest, widest.
The incomparable Jack Nicklaus designed the Painted Valley course. At an astounding 8,100 yards from the back tees, it’s one of the longest and most challenging links courses in the country.
Pete Dye designed the Canyons course, draped over some seriously rugged terrain. Though several hundred yards shorter, the fairways demand accuracy. Multiple tee boxes provide scoring opportunities for all players, no matter their skill level.
The Jack Nicklaus-designed Red Ledges golf course melds perfectly into stunning, red-rock scenery in the eastern foothills overlooking nearby Heber Valley. Three words that best describe it: elevated, bunkered, risky.
Many of the tee boxes are elevated, inviting soaring shots to well-bunkered, meticulously groomed greens.The fairways are wide, winding through red rock, sage and juniper trees.
“Quite a few holes are challenging, however the 16th provides a split fairway leading to the ultimate risk/reward situation for your second shot,” says Jon Paupore, Director of Golf. “A well-played shot to the left fairway leaves the player with a short wedge shot and the perfect angle to attack the green.”
Even though Red Ledges is a private facility, their Jim McLean Golf School is unique in that it is open to the public.