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GolfSpy Tim

Winter dreaming - Reno/Lake Tahoe/Truckee Golf

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It's this time of year when I hear golfers in colder parts of the world talking about hitting balls in their basements, dreaming of summer days. While I could rub it in that it's the middle of winter and I played a round this week in shorts and a t-shirt - but I won't push that.


South Shore Sunrise.jpg


Instead, I'd like to dream with you of where to play when it comes time to escape home and head out to places unknown for rounds with the buddies.


Toward the end of 2014 I was invited to join in on a media trip to tour the Tahoe and Reno golf scene, and I'm here to report that there are options worth your consideration - both in the dead of winter and in the heat of summer.


Our tour offered choices of golf courses each day with options for 36 holes a day at two different courses if you timed things right (and I'm here to say, there's enough light in the summer that if you really tried to line things up right, you could probably push 54 holes at three separate courses)


I started my trip by meeting the crew at David Walley's Resort and Restaurant for lunch in the Genoa, NV - this resort overlooks the Carson Valley and offers some nice lodging options as well as food and options to keep your family entertained while you sneak in a round nearby. (pretty sure my wife is getting a surprise trip here after our baby arrives - just don't tell her I plan to take off for a morning round of golf)


After lunch I was in for a treat - and one that I suggest you take advantage of if/when you ever find access - Clear Creek Tahoe is a private course sitting on the side of the mountain as you drive from Carson Valley up to Lake Tahoe and is a Coore Crenshaw design (my understanding is it may be one of their only mountain designs) - Not that I played 100 different courses last year - but of some VERY solid rounds in 2014 - this track qualified as one of the top 10 of the year for me. I only wish this track was closer to home and that I wasn't fighting my swing all day. A challenge and a pleasure all mixed into one.


Clear Creek #15H.jpg


After a fireside dinner at Clear Creek Tahoe we headed up the mountain for a night at Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel. No shenanigans, just a solid night's sleep and an early call for golf the next morning.

Starting day 2 we headed to Lake Tahoe Golf Course - a public course that presents the story of two 9's. After warming up on the front 9 the back 9 opens up into views and natural settings that had me almost jump off my cart and try fishing in a local creek on one hole.


Finishing a brisk 18 at Lake Tahoe Golf Course it was time to head down the road to Edgewood Tahoe - yes, the Edgewood you've seen on TV with the American Century Championship celebrity golf tournament.


Edgewood #17.jpg


Edgewood is a course I probably should have expected a lot from - but I went into the round without a lot of expectations - I can tell you, if you're in Lake Tahoe and want a proper round of golf, you'll be glad you took the time to get out - just make sure to stick around and watch the sunset from the deck while enjoying a drink.


For our round, we relaxed for a few at Edgewood after - but then headed down the street for dinner lakeside at the Lakeside Beach House. There's not much in life that beats a summer sunset over Lake Tahoe.


Having visited Squaw Valley numerous times in the winter and seeing a golf course peaking out from beneath the snow at different times, I HAD to get out and play the Resort at Squaw Creek golf course - aka The Links at Squaw Creek. It might be a stretch to call this track a "links" style course - it challenges golfers with an almost target golf skills requirement. Probably the best part of the day at Squaw Creek Resort was a 9 hole par three challenge - there's nothing like seeing a bunch of media on the course trying to put it in closest to the pin while trying to out drink each other and yelling and talking during one another's backswing (I did not represent the MGS team well in this event - though I think I kept up with the drinking)


Squaw Creek #5 Fog.jpg


After a night of cigars and drinks in the hot tub (umm... everything was in a plastic cup...?) we crashed out in rooms at the Resort at Squaw Creek - the perfect resting spot to tackle golf the next morning in Truckee.


I'm not a morning person, and I'm even less of a morning person when I've been up late smoking and drinking - so while I was scheduled to play a round at Old Greenwood - I managed to drive myself without coffee in my system to the other side of the 80 and played a round at The Golf Club at Gray's Crossing.


Gray's Crossing #6.jpg


Sporting one of the longest par 5's I've played in a long time (even at elevation) The Golf Club at Gray's Crossing turned out to be a fantastic mistake and is a location I've gone back to with my wife for a quick bite and a promise of future rounds.


For the afternoon we met up with the rest of the media crew and tackled the Tahoe Donner course - a narrow course with tons of trees, a mix of elevation and a fun mix of golf and some of the friendliest bartenders I've met in my travels.


Tahoe Donner #18.jpg


When dinner time approached I was assigned a seat at Drunken Monkey Sushi - to say I was shocked at the quality of sushi available this far into the mountains is an understatement. As a self proclaimed sushi snob, I was extremely pleased with the selections and quality. Having to drive home that night, I didn't get the "full" "Drunken Monkey" experience - but next time you're in Truckee, know there's quality sushi to be had.


So to all my friends who are locked down in snow and rain - I tell you, start planning now for the spring - get yourself to the Reno/Tahoe region - the golf is abundant and the rounds are memorable.

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The Tahoe area has some wonderful golf in the summer months. But in the Winter, it's time to pack the clubs and head south to the Desert...PGA West, La Quinta, for some warm weather and great golf.  We just got back from a 2 week stay, followed Nick Watney and Charlie Hoffman and Park at the Humana Challenge. We'll be back to Tahoe in spring after another winter trip to La Quinta. GOLF!!!!

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Great picks Tim, thanks for sharing .

Driver:   :taylormade-small: M3 Tensei CK Pro Blue
3-Metal:: :callaway-small: GBB EPIC, FujiKura Pro Green

5-Metal:  :cobra-small: F-7, FujiKura Pro

Irons:   :mizuno-small: MP-18 SC, KBS Tour 120

Wedges:  :cleveland-small:   RTX-3  52 - 56 - 60
Putter:  EVN-Roll ER-5

Ball :  :bridgestone-small: Tour B XS

Range Finder:  Busnnell Tour-X,  Garmin S20 


Follow me:


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When I was a traveling musician, Lake Tahoe was one of my favorite places to work.  It's an absolutely beautiful place.


It's a shame I didn't golf in those days...  These pics put a trip back there on my Bucket List.

What's In The Bag

Driver :titelist-small:

Titleist 913 D2 10.5* (set to 9.75* / Neutral) 46" Paderson KINETIXX Kevlar Green - R

Fairway Wood

Tom Wishon 949 MC 16.5* Fujikura Speeder 569-A

Hybrid  :cleveland-small: Hibore 22* Aldila VS Proto Blue

Irons  :ping-small: G series 5-P

Wedges :ping-small:Glide 54* SS / 60* TS - SCOR 53*

Putter     :nike-small: Nike Method 001 / P2 Reflex grip 35"


Master Grip Tour C4


Datrek DG Lite  

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When I was looking to move to Vegas full time that is what my boss sold me on....Reno golf in the summer and Vegas in the winter.  That is the best of all worlds if you can make it happen.

In the Bag for 2020

PXG 0811XF Gen 2 10.5* (set at 9*) AD VR 6x

PXG 0341X Gen 2 15* AD TP 7x

PXG 0317X Gen 2 19* KBS Proto 95x

PXG 0311T Gen 3 4-6 KBS $ Taper 130

PXG 0311 ST 7 - PW KBS $ Taper 130

PXG 0311 Sugar Daddy 50/10 KBS $ Taper 130

PXG 0311 Sugar Daddy 54/10 & 58/07 TTDG TI S400

:rife-putters-1: Two Bar Blade Long 47"


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I spent two years in Reno before it received about 5 more courses that it has now.   Even then it had the Highest per capita ratio of courses to golfers anywhere but Myrtle Beach and most were very cheap for the locals.   It's like the mirror image of Utah, everything reversed. but the same great climate.

bag - SunMountain Synch with Ogio Synergy X4 cart
driver - :callaway-small: Optiforce 440, Paderson Kevlar Green stiff 46.5"
fwoods - :taylormade-small: Jetspeed, 3HL regular
irons - :taylormade-small:  Speedblades 3-8, 85g stiff steel, 2 up
wedges - :edilon-small: Scor 40, 45, 50, 54, 58
putter - :ping-small: Ketsch 35" slight arc, SuperStroke 2.0 mid-slim
ball - :titelist-small: ProV1x

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Great area to play golf my grandparents used to have a cabin on the 11th Fairway of the Incline Village course then they moved to White horse so I have played quite a bit of golf in the area.

 Ping G410 LST 10.5 set -1* Flat Accra TZ5 65 M5

Callaway Epic Flash 15* set -1 Aldila ATX Blue 75TX

Ben Hogan FT Worth Hi 19* KBS Tour V X

Ben Hogan PTX Pro 4-P KBS Tour V X 2* Flat 4* loft increments

Hogan Equalizer 50* KBS Hi-Rev 2.0 X 2* Flat

Hogan Equalizer 56* KBS Hi-Rev 2.0 2* Flat

Hogan Equalizer 62* KBS Hi-Rev 2.0 2* Flat

EVNROLL ER7 P2 Aware Tour
Scotty Cameron Newport2 Buttonback P2 Aware Tour Grip
Snell MTB-X

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