St. Joe Valley Golf Club
|Red (W)||71||4616 yards||65.7||108|
|Blue M: 64.6/109||394||163||388||354||181||300||370||443||155||2748||478||247||278||161||191||305||369||145||351||2525||5273|
|White M: 63.7/107||379||155||383||347||167||285||370||435||144||2665||475||226||274||155||148||279||342||124||342||2365||5030|
|Gold M: 62.5/106 W: 66.1/109||371||151||350||295||158||273||342||405||140||2485||425||220||260||114||143||271||342||119||337||2231||4716|
|Red W: 65.7/108||366||147||345||288||151||269||337||389||135||2427||409||212||200||106||140||263||342||114||332||2118||4545|
Food & BeverageFood & Beverage
Highly Exceeded My Expectations - Enjoyable Track
The reason I gave this such a good review is because this course far exceeded my expectations. What I loved, is that this course doesn't make any outrageous claims. They don't claim to be the greatest course, with the fastest greens. You know by looking at the website that it's a par 68, and provides a relaxed feel. They have real bunkers that are groomed and kept in great shape. They keep the fairways smooth, and the rough is long and can be penalizing. The greens, while a little slow, roll VERY true. I felt every putt I hit did what it looked like, which is great. I went there expecting a below average course, and left knowing I will DEFINITELY come back.
First off, the staff is incredibly friendly. It's father-son ran, which is just great to see. When I came in they told me ahead of time that my front 9 would be slow due to a women's league. They would start me on the back and then I would just need to take my time on the front. So, while the pace of pace wasn't great, they let me know in advance. The son, also gave me local knowledge on the back 9, which is needed as there are some tricky holes.
The course is very affordable, as it cost only $15 to walk. They do charge a small fee for Credit Card, so bring cash if you want, but the fee wasn't crazy (3%).
Now, for the course itself. I started on the back 9. If you play this course you MUST play the back. It is a beautiful and fun 9 holes. However, for the sake of describing the course I will start with the front. I would also say, playing from the Blue tees gets you the most fun shots and views.
The front is fairly straightforward. 1-3 are what you see is what you get. 4 is the first one on the front 9 where I'd say definitely hit to a position. Left is dead, and Right is not great. Hit something 200-215 and you avoid most of the trouble. 4 also has some real danger if you miss the green, particularly left,. 5 is straightforward. 6 is a good risk-reward par 4. I'd suggest hitting less than driver, but be careful, as the fairway bunker on the right is about 220 away. Up the left side is ideal here. 7 from the Blue tees is a great tee shot. You have to hit thru a narrow shoot of trees. Trouble is left, so hit it up the right side. 7's green is heavily guarded by bunkers. 8 is a par 5 you can take advantage of if you hit a good tee ball, but there is tree trouble on both sides. This green also is protected by a huge bunker in the front. 9 is a straightforward par 3.
Now for the back 9, which again, if you only play one side, play this side. 10 is a really tough par 5. It's only 478 yards from the back tees, but without a perfect drive, it's a 3 shot hole. Anything right side of the fairway or right of the fairway is a punch out or layup. If you hit one really long down the left, you may have a go at it. This green is really undulated. 11, was my favorite hole. It's a short dogleg par 4. You have to go back into the wetlands to hit it from the blue tees. It's a big time risk reward hole. It is Only about 240-250 to drive it right at the green. However, there is really no margin for error if you do that - left is in the trees, right and short is in the water, long is in the gunch. The prudent play is to hit a 220 yard shot into the center of the fairway and leave yourself a 60 yard pitch. 12 is another good risk reward, dogleg par 4. Again, I wouldn't hit driver, but it would be reachable if you do. 13 is the only hole I didn't like. It's a par 3 that has trees overhanging the green. I hit a quality shot that was headed just left of the pin, and it hit a tree branch, and ended up on the front of the green. 14 is a good, long par 3. 15 is all trouble on both sides if you hit driver, I would recommend going less than driver. 16 is similar - hitting driver can be done, but I would suggest just hitting something to the bend and playing from 150. 17 is a good par 3, with a tricky green, and potential for a gnarly pin location back left. 18 is straightfroward.
All in all, I really enjoyed my experience. I think it is a good course for anyone, but definitely for those who love walking. This course certainly won't get the prestige of other area courses like Island Hills or Angels Crossing - but I don't think the comparison is even fair. They are different experiences. However, I feel for the money, this is an exceptional course to play. There was tons of wildlife out there as well - including a big snapping turtle I ran into on 12!
At joe valley
Course was in good shape. The staff couldn’t have been better. I’m looking forward to playing again