Course Tour

Hole 1: Inspiration


History

Inspiration, named for its magnificent view from below the Clubhouse, follows the tradition of a “gentle welcome” opening hole, and offers a generous landing area for those electing to take an aggressive start to their round. A line toward the large house on the hill in the distance is ideal. A well-played drive will leave a wedge or short iron approach to the green at the bottom of the hill. The shot will play at least one club shorter, given the elevation change and firm conditions around the green. Generally it is better to “miss short” on the approach.

Hole 2: Bonita


History

A line up the left side off the tee will provide the best angle for the approach, but there is plenty of room on the right side of the fairway. The second shot approach is more uphill than it appears, but don’t play too “safe”, as a ball played past the hole will likely leave a delicate downhill putt or chip as the green slopes from back to front. Walking up to the green, the 4th green is visible in the distance.

Hole 3: Orchard


History

Named for the DeLaveaga family’s pear orchard on the left, this long par 3 plays slightly shorter than the listed yardage due to the elevation change and firm conditions on the downslope in front of the green. Stronger players can carry the full distance to the green, but a recommended play for most is a run-up shot aimed to the right side of the green. The bunker on the left is farther from the green than it appears from the tee.

Hole 4: Meteor


History

Most players will favor the left half of the fairway on this par 5 in order to stay clear of the fairway bunker on the right side, but stronger players can challenge the bunker and take advantage of additional roll over the hill. Stay to the left side on the second shot. The green is long from front to back, and an approach shot favoring the left side of the green is usually a safe play. The hole is named for the rock-faced hill to the left of the green – many errant approach shots over the years have received a friendly bounce to the right.\

Hole 5: Mousetrap


History

Mousetrap, inspired by the shape of the green, is a medium-length par 4 that offers a choice of lines off the tee. A player may choose to cut the corner and reach the fairway upslope with a driver or fairway wood, but must be mindful of the hidden creek on the left side. A “safe” shot can be aimed just to the right of the tree at the bottom of the hill – the slope of the ground will help the ball roll out to a safe position. The second shot plays longer than the stated yardage, so be sure to add a club, or even two, when making your club selection. The wide green is shaped like a boomerang with a mound in the back center, so it is important to play your approach to the correct side of the green.

Hole 6: Long Tom


History

This hole is the longest on the course. The tee shot must cross Miner Road, and a line to the left is recommended as the hole bends in that direction. The wide fairway provides plenty of room for the second shot, but a shot favoring the right side is ideal. The green area slopes from right to left, so an approach shot to the right side is recommended. A run-up shot over the mound in front of the right side of the green will often trundle onto the green.

Hole 7: Sobrante


History

Named for the street running alongside it, a drive aimed to the left of the third fairway bunker is ideal. The second shot plays uphill, with a false front that is in play for short shots, so add a little extra club – there is plenty of room long. A spine in the middle of the green divides the green surface, so take care with the line of your approach.

Hole 8: Deadhorse


History

This is the shortest (and most photographed) hole on the course, but it is aptly named, as par is a good score for all! The tee shot is downhill, but the shot can play close to the stated yardage depending on the breeze. For shots missed to the left, a run-up shot up the bank to the green is often a safer choice than a pitch or “flop shot” with a lofted wedge.

Hole 9: Horseshoe


History

Because the DeLaveaga family used the ninth fairway for their stable and polo matches, this hole was named Horseshoe. This is a very long par 4 that can be shortened with a drive down the right side of the fairway, particularly for stronger players who can reach the downslope. The approach shot for most players will be a hybrid or fairway wood aimed to the left side of the green. Many players choose to play short of the green with their second shot, and attempt to get up and down for par.

Hole 10: Ed’s Delight


History

The tenth hole was named after E.I. DeLaveaga’s wife, Delight. Players can choose an aggressive play toward the bunker in front of the green, or a safer play with a shorter club toward the left side of the fairway. Favor the left side off the tee, as a beautiful oak tree guards the green from the right side of the fairway. Avoid the small bunker positioned off the right rear of the green.

Hole 11: Graveyard


History

The eleventh hole is a demanding par 4 crossing Lauterwasser Creek that has proven to be a scorecard wrecker – hence its name. The tee shot offers a generous landing area, but avoid the temptation to take a line too far to the left. A good aiming point off the tee is the tower in the distance. A well-placed drive will leave a mid to long iron approach (slightly downhill) to the bunkerless green. Like the ninth hole, many players choose to lay up with their second shot. The ideal lay up location is a flat section of the fairway approximately 100 yards from the green.

Hole 12: William Watson


History

The hole is named after course architect, William Watson. A slight draw off the tee to the left side of the wide fairway is best. There are no bunkers around the green, so take advantage of an opportunity to run your approach shot up to the green.

Hole 13: Mokelumne


History

This is a medium-length downhill hole that offers two avenues off the tee: a direct shot toward the pin (be sure to carry the “catcher’s mitt” bunker on the front left) or a shot to the hill on the left side of the green that can feed down to the putting surface.

Hole 14: San Pablo


History

The fourteenth hole is bordered on the right by San Pablo Creek. Although this is a short hole, the relatively narrow green and deep bunkers make it a challenging par 4. From the right tee box, most players will choose a club off the tee that will leave them short of the left side fairway bunker. Stronger players may take a more direct line over the small bunker on the right with a driver or fairway wood. From the left tee box, the green is visible, offering a tempting target for an aggressive drive. A well-played drive will lead to a short iron or pitch to a very small and well-bunkered green. Favor the left side of the green for your approach.

Hole 15: Despair


History

The fifteenth hole was featured as an example of a Redan-style hole by Robert Hunter in his 1926 golf architecture classic The Links. Standing on the tee, not many will think that the hole was misnamed. Like other Redan holes, a shot to the right side of the green is a safe play. Take comfort in the fact that the green is the largest on the course, and there is a significant margin for error long and to the right.

Hole 16: Gibraltar


History

The fairway on this long par 4 is gently sloped from left to right, but there is plenty of width off the tee. A good line off the tee is just right of the fairway bunker. A well-played drive will lead to a mid-iron approach to the elevated green. Favor the left side of the green for your approach, and add a half club on this shot to take into account the elevation and the green’s false front. An errant approach shot to the left (between the green and the 17th tee) will usually allow an opportunity for recovery.

Hole 17: Rincon


History

The seventeenth offers probably the most “comfortable” driving hole on the course for most, as this downhill hole features a wide landing area. A well-played drive will lead to a short iron or wedge approach to the relatively shallow green. The tendency is to go long on the approach, but there is plenty of room beyond the green.

Hole 18: Cascade


History

The finishing hole is a challenging par 5 that plays to a fantastic setting under the Clubhouse. After two long shots, players will face an uphill 3rd shot to a green with four sections. While a standard short iron shot is always playable (add at least an extra club for the elevation), there are many additional ways to play this shot – your member host can provide advice about fun ways to reach the hole.