I'll admit I have become a bit of a inland link aficionado in my Coore Crenshaw quest. Many of their courses are set up links-style (few trees, lots of natural undulations in the fairways and greens, etc.). However, Clear Creek Tahoe is so good that if I could play that course every day rather than a links-style course, I would!
Nestled amongst tons of pine trees and not much else, CCT is one of the best, most relaxing courses you have ever played. The scenery is outrageous, the routing is fantastic and the course is challenging and fun which is the best combination of all.
First off are the practice facilities which are some of the best anywhere. They have undulations, elevation gains and losses and chill Adirondack chairs just for sitting. Honestly you could spend all day just at the range.
Every touch of this course strikes the right note with me, even right down to the tee markers.
and then you step up to the tee and see that you are in for for the rest of the round. Wide fairways, pine straw and fescue abound, blue skies and plenty of pine trees.
The course goes over hill or dale but none moreso than the 3rd hole
where the fairway drops away over 200 feet from the tee box
and then even more as it doglegs right to a downhill green.
This hole will give you all the eye candy your golfing heart desires but the course doesn't just end on the third hole, there are many more awesome treats to come.
All the holes are fantastic but many will point to the par 3s as the superstars of the course.
Uphill, downhill, 120 yards to 225 yards, the par 3s give you variety, challenge and fun in very small packages.
The fact that you are golfing on top of a mountain comes into play with the bunkers.
While most golfers see bunkers as penal, here, they keep your ball near the green because if they weren't there, your ball would be going down some pretty severe slopes! The bunkers have the classic C&C rough edges to them and while it is windy at CCT, the sand is soft and deep allowing you to play a variety of sand shots if you find yourself in a bunker.
The green complexes are sneaky good. Rolling true and fast but not too fast there are enough undulations to make you think but also enough flat parts to give you a good shot at the hole. It is just another example of how this course can be challenging yet fair and fun.
Of all the holes of CCT, my favorite hole by a country mile has to be the par 5 13th hole which plays to a dogleg right
and then ending in a green that has an infinity pool effect.
The views down the mountain are worth the price of admission and this hole will stay with me for a long time.
To say that CCT is one of my favorite courses of all time is an understatement. It has all the classic hallmarks of a Coore Crenshaw course, using the land to a naturally challenging effect, outrageous bunkers and intriguing green complexes and a fun but playable design. Putting it over the top is the mountain setting.
As much as I love the new in-land links courses, a course like this with the trees and the mountains really gets my heart racing.
For more information about Clear Creek Tahoe check out the info: http://clearcreektahoe.com/