Emerald Canyon Golf Course

ADDRESS: 7351 Riverside Drive
Parker, Arizona 85344
TYPE: Public
HOLES: 18
PHONE: 928-667-3366
WEBSITE: www.emeraldcanyongolf.com

Arizona Golf Courses – Emerald Canyon Golf Course
If your list of Arizona golf’s hidden gems doesn’t have Emerald Canyon, located just north of Parker, Arizona, at or near the top, then you need a new list.

Arizona Golf Courses Guide List Directory and Arizona Golf Course Reviews from the Arizona Golf Authority.

Emerald Canyon Golf Course – Parker, Arizona

Combine great golf course design with stunning Colorado riverside scenery, great course conditioning, quality greens, value for your dollar and a capital “WOW” factor, and it doesn’t get much better than the golf course at Emerald Canyon.

Move this course to Scottsdale, and the green fee would be out of sight; here, most think they’ve climbed to the summit of golf-bargain mountain. Many words have been used to describe Emerald Canyon; “exotic” might be the best.

Located between Lake Havasu City and Parker in the Buckskin Mountains and sculpted out of land better suited as a hideout for the “Hole in the Wall Gang,” Emerald Canyon is a rugged journey that can tan your hide and leave you wondering how they ever got lush fairways to grow here.

Bill Phillips designed the layout which mixes desert-style with traditional golf holes on this unique piece of property that opened in 1991. The landscape here may be the most dramatic of any course in Arizona with its combination of boulders, cliffs, canyons, ravines, stunning views of the Colorado River and surrounding mountains.

Emerald Canyon has received a four-star award from Golf Digest and is ranked as one of the favorite places to play by out-of-state visitors, often drawing golfers from Nevada’s river-side gambling towns just up the road. Despite all that attention, Emerald Canyon has maintained a quaintness befitting a municipal course, perhaps because its owned by La Paz County, Arizona.

Three sets of tees are offered at 6,437, 5897 and 4,756 yards, with a rating of 71.1 and slope of 130 from the tips, and water in play on four holes. That might not sound too scary, but there are plenty of challenges with elevation changes, doglegs, craggy transition areas and strategic bunkering. Sometimes that topography can be your friend, which is the case during a three-hole stretch on the front-9.

No. 4 is a drivable par 4 at 278 yards from the tips with steep canyon walls along both sides that can “kick” errant shots back into the fairway. The undulating green is tucked in a cove on the right side and must be approached from the left, or it leaves a blind, uphill approach over a canyon wall.

No. 5 is a downhill par 3 of 147 yards, which requires you to carry a deep ravine with your tee shot, but shots over the green often get a favorable kick from the mountain wall behind the green.

The 6th also plays over a ravine and has canyon walls along the sides that might provide a friendly carom, but this 397-yard par 4 has a tough green complex at the bottom of a gorge. It’s the No. 1 handicap hole and bogey here is just fine.

The back-9 has another great three-hole stretch. No. 15, a 353-yard par 4 features a rock cliff on the left, large desert arroyo on the right and a tiered green at the base of the canyon.

The 16th, another drivable par 4 at 283 yards, offers excellent views of the Colorado River from a tee perched 130 feet above the green, which is fronted by railroad ties holding back gravel from adjacent hills, giving it a “Jaws” appearance from a distance.

No. 17 is a 524-yard par 5 with a 150-foot elevation drop to a tight fairway and the approach must clear a 130-foot cliff drop-off.

Whether you’re making birdies or bogies here, when the last putt is holed you’ll look back on a day-long thrill ride of fun golf.

The course has full practice facilities and a modest clubhouse with a snack bar. There are plenty of casinos, hotels and dining places to choose from nearby. Wherever you stop, you’ll probably see someone wearing the popular T-shirts that feature a golfer hacking his way through cactus, rocks, snakes, tarantulas and Gila Monsters, with the words, “I survived the Emerald Canyon Golf Course.”

And if you ask them, nearly every single one will say, “Yeah, it was great fun.”

Read the Arizona Golf Course Guide List Directory Review for every golf course in Arizona at www.arizonagolfauthority.com/coursedirectory; it’s “All Things Arizona Golf” from the Arizona Golf Authority.

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