Great American Scenery VII
Due to the absolutely overwhelming response to my scenery series, I will post my last one. Then I will get back to the subject I have been neglecting…Bush Bashing. Anyway, here I am going to leave California and go a little southeast to Tucson, Arizona. I had the good fortune to be able to play golf in the desert there a few times and it is truly a different experience from your typical city courses and nothing like links.
Tucson sits roughly 90 miles south of Phoenix and about 70 miles north of the Mexican border. It is right in the middle of the desert. The wildlife here ranges from rattle snakes and scorpions to magnificent birds of prey. I went twice, each time for a 4 day golf trip. Below are pics of where I played and a few anecdotes.
The first is not really in Tucson, but about 60 miles south. It is Tubac Resort. It’s claim to fame is that the movie “Tin Cup” with Kevin Costner was shot here. There was not a water hazard on the course and they needed one for the movie so they built a lake. It is now known as Tin Cup lake and there is a small plaque there explaining that. Its a fairly straightforward, easy course but I still shot my usual 100 both times I played it.
Tin Cup Lake
The next course is called Vistoso. This is one of the most beautiful courses I have ever played. Like most courses in this area, there are warning signs about snakes and the cactus in the rough areas. The scenery here is wonderful. Unbelievably, I shot 96.
Number 3 at Vistoso
Number 5. The colors in the desert in spring (this is April) are wonderous.
On my second trip to Tucson, we decided to play….The Raven. This course is now called Tucson National. The course is situated on the side of a mountain. It is probably the toughest, and certainly one of the most beautiful courses I have ever played. When we arrived at the clubhouse, paid our fees, got our clubs washed (great service here) the golf club attendant asked if we had ever played here before. We said no. He said, “Oh, then you don’t know about the “Mark of the Raven.” We said no, what’s that? He said he would tell us when we came in after playing.
Like many courses in the desert, there were warnings about snakes and the treacherous cactus in the rough areas. They advised to stay out of those areas even if you could see your ball and could retrieve it. Well we are not pro golfers and thus, ended up in the rough a few times. And golf balls are expensive. So, when we hit into those rough areas, if we could see our ball, we went in to get it. The cactus is unforgiving. It seems to shoot its needles into you. By the end of the day we all had a few bleeding spots on our arms.
So, at last we finished the round and straggled back to the clubhouse with dried blood on our arms and shirts and blood soiled golf towels. We went in to turn in our cart keys. The attendent looked at our wounds and simply said, “That, is the Mark of the Raven.”
Sorry this is so small. I think this is number 12, a long downhill par 5. The tee area is above the camera and the green is on the other side of the lake. Ended up shooting 106 here and was 2nd in my foursome!
The last course I played is called El Conquistador. It is the largest complex in Tucson with 45 holes. It is part of the Hilton complex. Just another wonderful, beautiful place to play.
Hope you enjoyed