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Golf Utopia Review

Texas Outside Rating: 6.3

Golf - Public Course · 9 Holes · Par 72
Utopia
Website · Locate This Course
Date Last Played: September 30, 2012

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Golf Utopia Review

Review of Golf Utopia

Golf Utopia is a short nine hole course on the outskirts of Utopia - the definition of utopia is "an ideal and perfect place or state where everyone lives in harmony and everything is for the best" .  The course was carved out of some flat to gently rolling farmland and opened for play in 2001.  In fact, during your round you'll see ancient farm equipment, horses, cows, and beautiful peaks and rolling hills of some of the most scenic hill country in Texas.  

It's not easy to find Utopia, but somehow Hollywood found it and in August, 2010 a crew moved in to start filming the movie "Seven Days in Utopia" starring Robert Duvall, Lucas Black, and Melissa Leo. The story revolves around a young pro golfer (Lucas Black) who has a major meltdown in a tour tournament and ends up in Utopia where he meets seasoned pro, Robert Duvall who helps him improve his golf game as well as his life. The Golf Utopia course is where is where Lucas "finds his game."  The pro shop is filled with some of the movie and book memorabilia. 

Some of what makes playing Golf Utopia fun is:

  • knowing that you've played where Robert Duval stared in a movie
  • reading some interesting and inspiring quotes from the 7 Days in Utopia book at each of the tee boxes - for example, "... confidence is supreme in golf," "focus on your checklist - see it, feel it, trust it"
  • enjoying the scenery and peace and quiet
  • trying to find your game like Lucas did and walk into the clubhouse after your round with a good score

Most of the nine holes are fairly straightforward and traditional and you can typically see the flag and any potential trouble from the pin.  Some of the holes that we liked included:

  • #2 is a 450 yard par four with a sharp dogleg right and on the second shot you may be tempted to try and fly the Waresville Cemetery to stuff it on the green - miss and you're in with some other golfers resting in peace
  • #3 offers another risk reward opportunity to try and shorten the hole and maybe even go for the green on this sharp 90 degree dog leg left 405 yard par 4 with a natural sand area if you miss and a very demanding approach shot to a green with tall reeds and water around three fourths of it
  • #9 has a little bit of everything - a long natural sand area, slight uphill shot to the green, 503 yards from the tips, a small pond and cascading creek, and a green set slightly off to the left - but the fairway is one of the widest off the tee so bring out the big dog and let 'er rip

The fairways are generally a little tight thanks to trees and you'll even find some trees that will split the fairway or block your approach to the green.  When we played Golf Utopia in late September the fairways were in very bad condition - patchy spots of grass, a variety of weeds, and dirt.  It was hard to tell the fairway from the rough or the cow pasture.  The cart paths ranged from none to crushed stone to dirt trails.

The greens at Golf Utopia are a variety of shapes and sizes and most are small to average.  When we played, which was just after a rain storm, they were bumpy and a tad slow and in fair condition.  Most are fairly flat but you'll encounter some contour, slope, and a couple of the greens are slightly raised.

There are only a couple of bunkers and they are more like long natural sand areas with firm thin sand and no lip. 

If you happen to be in the area, Golf Utopia is worth stopping in for a round of golf and some inspiring quotes from the book.

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Course Slope & Ratings

Tee Box Yardage Rating Slope
Blue 3,232
White 3,011
Red 2,625

Course Information

Greens Type:
Bermuda
Greens Condition
5.0
Greens Difficulty
6.5
Fairway Condition
4.0
Bunker Condition
4.0
GPS:
No
Walkable:
Easy
Beware of water on 4 holes and the 3 sand traps.

Texas Outside Rating

Overall Rating:
6.3 out of 10
Beauty:
7.5
Difficulty:
7.0
Variety:
6.0
Fun to Play:
7.0
Value:
6.0
Condition:
4.0
Front Nine Rating:
6.3
Back Nine Rating:
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FEES & AMENITIES

Approximate Weekend
Rates:
$26.00 to $32.00

Service is country friendly but no cart service is available. The Clubhouse is very nice with a pro shop that has the basics and lots of Utopia shirts, hats, and movie paraphernalia. No food service is available. The range is interesting and filled with antique farm equipment as targets.

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Here's How Texas Outside Determines the Scorecard Rating

The Texas Outside rating scale ranges from 1 to 10 – a perfect 10 course would be something like this:  links along a cliff overlooking the Pacific ocean and bordered by tall trees; lush fairways on rolling hills with lots of natural hazards; water (which is crystal clear) on most of the holes; immaculate greens (but they are undulating and tough); lots of variety and character (each hole is completely different and includes blind shots, elevation changes, doglegs, and significant challenges); perfectly manicured traps with the whitest and prettiest sand you’ve ever seen; a nice club house with great food and a 19th hole; a GPS; plenty of beverage carts or your own cooler and ice; and it only costs $40 bucks! What this means is that you probably won’t find any 10s in Texas – try Cabo San Lucas, Pebble Beach, or some of the Hawaii courses! 
Texas Outside rates courses on the following:

  • Beauty – tall trees, rolling hills, beautiful houses, waterfalls, and similar stuff would score high; a 1 would be flat, bushes or cactus instead of trees, and some grass but mostly weeds
  • Difficulty – a straight, 300 yard par 4 with no traps or hazards, no out of bounds or water would probably get a 1; if it is a 460 yard par 4 over two ravines, with water along one side, natural hazards on the other, strategically placed traps or that dreaded tree right in the middle of the fairway, we are talking a 10. 
  • Variety – what would you give a course where all the holes looked and played exactly the same (“I thought we just played that hole!”); were side-by-side, which is good for finding or dodging other people’s balls, but not much fun; and you can see the flag from every tee box?  That’s right, it gets a 1.
  • Fun Scale – a 10 is where you walk off the course and say “now that was fun” and you can’t wait to get back, or you immediately turn around and play another 18 holes
  • Value – a 5 is $50 to $60, a 10 is $20 to $30, and 1 is $200 or so – of course all of this is dependent upon how you liked the course.  For example, if a run down, boring municipal course, with six players on each hole was only $10; it would still get a value rating of 1.
  • Condition – this one’s pretty easy – what condition are the fairways. A 10 commands very lush perfectly manicured fairways, compared to a 1, which has fire ants, weeds, and more dirt than grass!
  • Condition of Greens and Difficulty – very hard to read greens with lots of undulation and tough pin placement, rate very high on the difficulty scale.  Condition is self-explanatory.  

All of the above determines the overall score for the golf course.  In other words, we like courses that are pretty, fun, very challenging with a lot of variety, and fairways and greens in excellent condition – all for $40.  We also tend to play the courses that are affordable for the masses, which means in the $30 to $80 range. We rate hard and we haven’t found a 10 in Texas yet – don’t worry we haven’t given up and we’re still looking.