Nature stars on 27 holes at the Resort at the Mountain in Welches | Oregon Golf
Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 9
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Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 9
The Resort at the Mountain near Mt. Hood features 27 holes of golf, redesigned by John Harbottle. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain -Foxglove - no. 1
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Resort at the Mountain -Foxglove - no. 1
Perhaps the signature hole at The Resort, the first hole on the Foxglove Course, forces you to negotiate around a boulder. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain - Foxglove - no. 8
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Resort at the Mountain - Foxglove - no. 8
The Foxglove nine is the tightest and toughest layout at the Resort at the Mountain in Welches, Oregon. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 1
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Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 1
Stone markers are part of the charm at the Resort at the Mountain. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 1
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Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 1
Foothills provide a dramatic backdrop to the holes at the Resort at the Mountain, including the par-4 first on the Thistle golf course. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 4
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Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 4
The par-5 fourth on the Thistle at the Resort at the Mountain plays around a bend. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 8
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Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 8
The par-3 eighth hole on the Thistle golf course plays through a chute of trees over a hazard. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 9
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Resort at the Mountain - Thistle - no. 9
The no. 1-handicap hole on the Thistle nine is the par-4 ninth, a dogleg left that plays around a hazard. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain - Pine Cone - no. 1
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Resort at the Mountain - Pine Cone - no. 1
The first hole on the Resort at the Mountain's Pine Cone Course tees off next to the clubhouse over a hedge. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain - Pine Cone - no. 2
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Resort at the Mountain - Pine Cone - no. 2
The par-4 second hole on the Pine Cone nine brings dramatic hills back into view. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain - Pine Cone - no. 3
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Resort at the Mountain - Pine Cone - no. 3
It's not long, but the par-3 third on the Pine Cone golf course certainly challenges. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
Resort at the Mountain - Pine Cone - spa
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Resort at the Mountain - Pine Cone - spa
The best way to end a round of golf is with a treatment at The Resort's reasonably priced spa. Mike Bailey/Golf Advisor
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Off the beaten path: 27-hole Resort at the Mountain in Welches, Oregon, near Mt. Hood

WELCHES, Ore. -- Located in the western highlands of Mt. Hood and less than an hour east of Portland, the Resort at the Mountain is a 27-hole valley golf retreat that offers an unpretentious resort experience.

Though you can't see Mt. Hood from The Resort, you can certainly feel its presence throughout with the elevation change and surrounding foothills.

And for those looking for more than golf, the resort has plenty of other recreational activities, dining, accommodations and a full-service spa.

A renovation in recent years by acclaimed architect John Harbottle really makes this unique combination of holes stand out. The three nines -- the Pine Cone Course, Thistle Course and Foxglove Course -- are all unique. And though the courses aren't long, they are certainly challenging.

The most challenging of the three layouts is the Foxglove Course, where the first hole features a large boulder and tree in the middle of the fairway. The boulder is believed to have come from Mt. Hood, and the hole is next to the Salmon River, where golfers sometimes like to take a break during the hot summer months and cool off in the middle of a round.

Other activities include hiking on the nearby Pacific Crest Trail, biking the many trails at the nearby Sandy Ridge Trail mountain bike park or fishing in the river.

Mike Bailey is a senior staff writer based in Houston. Focusing primarily on golf in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean and Latin America with an occasional trip to Europe and beyond, he contributes course reviews, travel stories and features as well as the occasional equipment review. An award-winning writer and past president of Texas Golf Writers Association, he has more than 25 years in the golf industry. Before accepting his current position in 2008, he was on staff at PGA Magazine, The Golfweek Group and AvidGolfer Magazine. Follow Mike on Twitter at @MikeBaileyGA and Instagram at @MikeStefanBailey.

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Off the beaten path: 27-hole Resort at the Mountain in Welches, Oregon, near Mt. Hood