Review of Pagosa Springs Golf Club – Ponderosa Course
Pagosa Springs Golf Club is home to three nine hole courses that are framed by towering Pagosa Pines, some clear lakes, beautiful mountain homes, and the stunning San Juan Mountains. Each of the nines has its own unique personality and characteristics:
We didn’t have time to play the Meadow Course but here is a link to our review of the Pinon Course.
In June 2013, Pagosa Springs Golf Club was in receivership, being managed by Tri Star a premier golf management company, and was going through a transition waiting for new owners. In addition, Southern Colorado and Northern New Mexico were suffering through a third year of drought and no rain, which has had a significant impact on the course conditions. In addition, the snowpack was light this year which also impacts the conditions. And even worse, in mid-2013 the water pump for the Pinon Course broke! What a streak of bad luck – pray for rain!
We enjoyed playing the Ponderosa nine – it’s scenic as it plays up the hills and back down through some towering ponderosa pines with some beautiful views of the San Juan Mountains rising high into the clouds, and it seems peaceful and serene. It’s short at 3136 yards and a par 35 – offering a great opportunity to turn in a good score if you can keep the ball in the fairway. And it’s got some great holes like:
The fairways on the Pagosa Springs Golf Club Ponderosa nine are the tightest of all three nines and when we played, thanks to the limited snowfall and drought were a little dry and brown in spots, but still very playable. The rough was cut thin and easy to get out of, but miss it and you’re most likely lost. There are lots of ups and downs and elevation changes and the fairways are relatively flat with very few uneven lies. Most of the fairways are lined with some beautiful mountain and vacation homes.
The greens on the Ponderosa Nine range in size and shape from some ovals to some tough oblongs. The greens are good sized making the approach shouts a little easier. All of them have some slope and lots of contour which you need to carefully study before you putt. When we played they were in very good condition, ran true and at a great speed, and held the ball well.
The 14 bunkers are all guarding the green, putting a premium on your short game. The sand is gritty, thin, and firm and tough to get under. The lips are 2 to 4 inches and easy to carry.
Bottom line – a very fair, fun, scenic, peaceful nine with pretty good conditions and some fun holes and best of all an opportunity to turn in a good score
Slope and rating are based on playing the Pinon and Ponderosa Nines.
Read all about this fun trip to Southern Colorado/Northern New Mexico where this is one of the courses we played.
Rates: $39.00 to $86.00
Service is ok, the course keeps busy but the pace of play for us on a Sunday morning was excellent, the pro shop has a limited supply of the basics, and the range and putting green are adequate. The outside grill at the turn serves burgers, sandwiches, dogs, and more.
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.