August monsoons and cooler, leaf-coloring temperatures have arrived, setting the stage for some super-tempting golf opportunities among Colorado’s lower and warmer elevations. Looking to extend your summer? Consider these four premier destinations:
- Back dropped by mesmerizing Grand Mesa and framed by Grand Junction’s high sierra scenery, The Golf Club at Redlands Mesa is a full-throttle must play. Its Jim Engh design has earned No. 1 status on Golfweek magazine’s Best Courses You Can Play in Colorado list, and an 18-hole round is a head-turning deal: $65, or $50 with a Colorado AvidGolfer Golf Passport. Honorable mentions: Devil’s Thumb Golf Course (Rick Phelps) is a painted desert challenge that’s feathered into Delta’s stark and picturesque Adobe Hills. The Bridges Golf Club (Nicklaus Design) continues to gain celebrity as a leading semi-private layout in Montrose.
- On the Front Range, Mariana Butte Golf Course (Dick Phelps) in Loveland was voted a readers’ top pick during the 2016 CAGGY Awards competition. The city owned facility borders the rushing Big Thompson River and can be had any day of the week for $43 plus cart fee. Honorable mentions: 27-hole Pelican Lakes Golf & Country Club (Ted Robinson and Mike Heinz) in Windsor and Collindale Golf Course (Frank Hummel) in Fort Collins are both exemplary, daily-fee styled routings.
- We’re not alone in our utter adoration for The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs. Ranked in 2015 the No. 1 golf resort in North America by Golf magazine, the vacation property offers 54 holes designed by Donald Ross, Robert Trent Jones and Jack Nicklaus golf that have hosted multiple major championships (plus the upcoming 2018 Senior Open). In Colorado Springs, consider, too, The Club at Flying Horse (Tom Weiskopf), a private course that welcomes guests from its plush lodge. Honorable mentions: Four Mile Ranch (Jim Engh) in Cañon City is a perennial CAGGY award-winning experience, as is Walking Stick Golf Course (Arthur Hills), which is renowned for its cart-fee-included $32 greens fees. Both courses are part of The Golf Passport.
- Admittedly, gaining access to a members-only golf club can be tricky, but it’s not impossible. Sometimes it’s as simple as phoning a well-connected friend or coordinating a site visit with the intention of purchasing real estate or a membership. For a mind-blowing golf trip, take advantage of the one-time stay-and-play offer at Ballyneal Golf Club (Tom Doak) near Holyyoke, ranked among the world’s top 100 courses by Golf (#75), Golf Digest (#68) and Links (#32) magazines. Honorable mentions: Harmony Club (Jim Engh) in Timnath; Blackstone Country Club (Jay Morrish) in Aurora; and The Ranch Country Club (Dick Phelps) in Westminster.
Chris Duthie is a Durango-based contributor to Colorado AvidGolfer. Colorado AvidGolfer is the state’s leading resource for golf and the lifestyle that surrounds it, publishing eight issues annually and proudly delivering daily content via coloradoavidgolfer.com. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.