Review and Rating of Falconhead Golf Course in Austin Texas
Falconhead Golf Course was designed for and is operated to meet, the exacting standards of the PGA Tour and as such is a PGA Tour Signature Course. And what a fun track with an outstanding layout that leverages the local rolling Hill Country terrain. Located on the southwest side of Austin, Falconhead Golf Club takes advantage of the terrain as it plays up and down the rolling hill country, along with some natural areas, across a couple of creeks, through the knobby oak and cedar trees, and beside some beautiful homes in the Falconhead Golf Community. Dramatically elevated tee boxes offer some majestic panoramic views of the hill country.
Falconhead Golf Club is currently owned and operated by Magnolia Golf Management, which also owns two other fantastic golf courses - Avery Ranch Golf Club in Austin and Teravista Golf Club in Round Rock. Falconhead will throw a little bit of everything at you (forced carries, elevated tee boxes, dramatic uphill approaches, blind shots, dog legs, water, huge bunkers, narrow approaches, and more) but the layout is very fair and with 5 sets of tee boxes you can bite off as much as you want to chew or play forward a set of tee boxes and have a fun relaxing round. From the tee box, you can typically see what you're up against and plan your strategy accordingly. Several holes demand accuracy off the tee box to miss the trees, avoid the bunkers, and play around a couple trees in the middle of the fairway. From our perspective, Falconhead Golf Club offers a little bit of everything that makes golf fun and challenging, which is why we added it to our list of the Best Courses in Austin.
Falconhead has an excellent hole by hole tour on their website - check it out to see the layout for each hole. Some examples of holes that we really liked include:
We loved the front nine and found it fun and fair, but demanding with ups and downs, bunkers, and some challenging fairways. The back doesn't have quite as much character and it seems more open and forgiving off the tee box.
When we played in March, the fairways still transistioning from winter to summer conditions. The fairways range from wide open to tight and most are contoured and have a fair amount of slope. You'll find lots of uphill as well as downhill shots. Before you hit, study the fairway slope carefully and plan on some extra roll from the slope as well as the dry firm conditions. Some beautiful homes dot one side of some of the holes. The rough was wide and held the ball up making for an easy recovery shot - miss the rough and you'll be under the trees and in tall native grass.
The greens at Falconhead Golf Club were also in very good condition and run at a good speed of around 10 or so. 40% or more of the greens are raised, most are average size, several are guarded, and all of them require some study before you putt. The speed and slope and subtle breaks are very challenging and putting was a difficult for our foursome. The slope and false fronts on some of the greens will take you off the green and rolling back down the fairway - very depressing to watch!!
The bunkers range from average size to huge and a couple trough bunkers have long narrow grass strips within them which can cause a problem. When we played the bunkers needed some work - the sand was thin and gritty. We were told that there are plans to renovate the bunkers.
Falconhead Golf Club is a fun, scenic, and memorable track that can test your game as well as your putting skills. If you're in the area it's a must-play.
Rates: $34.00 to $89.00
Service is very good and friendly, the pro shop has a good supply of the basics, and the grill food is ok - the chicken salad and tuna sliders are excellent. The range, putting green, and practice area are very good - make sure you spend some time on the greens!
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!
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.