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John Renslow: Best course in NorCal? You make the call

Increasing your enjoyment of the game and encouraging participation is the goal of Get Into Golf. We talk about current events, instruction, rules questions, new products, gifts, etc.

If it’s about golf, you can find it here.

We’re also interactive. Most of answers provided each week are from questions posed by readers. Often it is a question about the rules, but the range is broad, from equipment to travel destinations.



Get Into Golf is going to start a new trend; you get to provide the answer. Most golfers are not bashful with an opinion and your feedback will be part of a big picture that will provide much needed information to thousands of fellow golfers.

One question a month is a good benchmark. Get Into Golf will gather the data and give you the word to help you make the best decision for your game or lifestyle.




So, here we go … Question No. 1. With apologies, question No. 1 is a two-part question. Regulation golf courses have 18 holes. If you can only play nine, will you still play or do you wait for the opportunity to play 18?

Next, part two, what is the best 9-hole golf course in Northern California? There are a number of 9-hole designs that are really good, essentially half of a solid 18-hole track. Gleneagles Golf Course in San Francisco’s McLaren Park comes to mind. This is a super nine holes of golf.

The geography is in the same strata as Harding Park GC and the Olympic Club, so the cypress trees line the narrow fairways and the greens are generally in good shape. A 577-yard, par-5 sixth hole and 442-yard par-4 ninth hole will test any golfer.

Others are simply subpar (pun intended). We won’t name names, but when you enter the property, we’re not sure there’s really a golf course nearby or simply a good spot to build an airport.

Thank you for your help! Send me an e-mail with your favorites.

Also, kudos go out to Phyllis Smith. Phyllis shot an 86 at the Alta Sierra Country Club. Now, most of us would be happy with a score of 86. In fact, statistically, this score is among the top 15 percent of all golfers (according to the National Golf Foundation).

The special thing about Phyllis is that her score matched her age. This is an uncommon feat we refer to as “shooting your age,” to which we all aspire. Congratulations Phyllis!

John Renslow is general manager and director of golf at Alta Sierra Country Club. Please contact John with your questions or comments at jrenslow@pga.com.


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