18 holes | Par 72
Yardage | 6,004-7,106
Slope | 120-144
Rating | 66.7-73.6
Robert Trent Jones Sr. laid out his grand design for the Incline Village Championship Golf Course in 1964, carving into the mountainside a course that would stand the test of time and set it apart in humble fashion among all others in the Tahoe Basin. It’s a traditional style par-72 layout, with four par 5s and four par 3s, featuring picturesque views of the lake, raging creeks and no shortage of pine trees. Teeing off on a late summer afternoon, just after a passing storm, you will find yourself immersed amidst a bright green maze reminiscent of an alpine rainforest.
First-shot landing zones on nearly every hole are adorned with healthy sized sandboxes, in perfect placements with regards to catching awry drives from any tee pad. The greens come in a variety of shapes and sizes and they, too, are surrounded on multiple sides with traps, which in some cases can lend a helping hand to approach shots coming into the putting area with a little too much steam. That being said, you can almost guarantee to find yourself hitting from the bunker at some point during your stay here. Confidence in the sand is a genuine asset.
Hole 7 is blessed with perhaps the most beautiful view from any tee box in Tahoe. The fairway points straight down into the lake.
The greens are fast, simply put, even after a coating of rain. Putts from anywhere above the hole can be troublesome to slow down, running past the cup with ease, making it worth your while to calibrate your speed before your round on the large putting green next to the 10th tee. Though quick and full of slope, putts are readable; just be sure to factor in the sometimes illusion-like, natural fade toward the lake regardless of where you’re coming from. You’ll see.
The No. 1 handicapped par 4, 12th hole, is a unique challenge. It’s a dogleg right that bends back, perhaps even more than 90 degrees. It requires a tee shot that is just long enough to give you a clean line to the flag, but not so much as to cut through the fairway into the rough.
Hole 7 is blessed with perhaps the most beautiful view from any tee box in Tahoe. The fairway points straight down into the lake. A long-iron shot is most ideal so the ball does not travel far enough to catch the bunkers guarding the edge of the fairway before the hole bends yet again sharply to the right. The approach shot from here needs to be hit well enough to carry the creek that cuts across the fairway and to avoid the massive bunkers to the left of the green.
There’s a huge driving range and short game facility on site. Lessons, clinics and club fittings are available with teaching professionals Scott Schuster and Neil Gunn. A FlightScope X2 Elite launch monitor has recently been added to the course’s arsenal. It uses 3-D Doppler radar to track analytics immediately from swing, connection and ball flight, which assists with fitting clubs and fine-tuning a golfer’s mechanics to improve distance and accuracy.
For more information or to book a tee time, call (775) 832-1146 or visit yourtahoeplace.com/golf-incline.