A municipal course, first opened in 1929. This very busy course is well-maintained and open March to November. Lay of the land is such that each play breaks toward the city. Fast greens.
When Brigham Young reached the mouth of Emigration Canyon and announced "this is the place", perhaps he was foreseeing the creation of Bonneville Golf Course. Just 80 years later, the first nine holes were laid out in the foothills overlooking that exact spot.
As one of the oldest and most popular golf courses in the Salt Lake City valley, its challenge, nostalgia, setting and proximity to downtown combine to make tee times scarce and waiting lists long everyday of the week.
Coming up the drive are evident the only negative reminders of the course's age -- the entry gate is in ruins and the parking lot is pot marked and faded. The city must have better needs for our tax money. In the clubhouse the Pro and staff maintain a busy shop and snack bar which is roomy, comfortable and friendly.
The course itself is very interesting and has several holes which crisscross a deep ravine that runs through the lower portion of the course. For the uninitiated, the first tee can be intimidating as it sits just a few feet from the clubhouse and related activity.
Located in the foothills, the course follows the natural contours of the land. This confronts the golfer with many different uneven lies. The course is very challenging because of its length and the wooded waste areas surrounding many fairways. Beginners be warned that several forced carries of at least 100 yards are required on both 9s.
On several holes it's hard to believe that the they were built in the pre-titanium age of 1927 -- two of the par 4s on the front are over 450 yards long. In general, the longer holes offer more fairway landing area and the shorter holes are tighter and require blind shots.
The hardest hole to par is number 5. This 457 yard monster goes uphill and requires a 300 yard drive to pass a clump of trees and brush and get a clear shot to the green. I'd like to have seen someone 70 years ago make that shot with a guttie and persimmon!
The signature hole and next most difficult hole is number 9. It is a 470 yard par 4. What makes it a little easier than number 5 is that the tee shot is downhill. The second shot is usually from a downhill lie and requires a carry across a wide ravine to the green. Again, it's tough with today's equipment -- even tougher years ago.
Bonneville also has Salt Lake's version of the famous St. Andrews road hole. The left side of the green on number 16 sits right up to a fence separating the golf course from the busy street. Hit it left and your ball will end up bouncing its way downtown. Go right and a deep sand bunker may catch your ball.
The age, quirks and rough spots are the attributes that set Bonneville apart from other courses and contribute to the playing enjoyment. Its a good change of pace from all of the perfectly graded and manicured courses being built today.
Because of its blind shots, forced carries and resulting lost balls, the course experiences slow play. Plan on spending a little more time than usual to play a round.
|Golf Season||Open: 3/01 Closed: 11/01|
|Metal Spikes Allowed||No|
|Driving Range Available||Yes|
|Rental Carts Available||Yes|
|Rental Clubs Available||Yes|
|Tee Times Welcomed||Yes|
|Price Range Weekdays||$35|
|Price Range Weekends||$35|
|Credit Cards Accepted||VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Discover Card Welcomed|
|Blue (W)||74||6469 yd.||131||75|
|White (W)||74||5906 yd.||131||75|
|Gold (W)||74||4696 yd.||105||64.5|
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