When playing Canyon Country Club what is the most important accessory to bring with you? Golf balls? Water? Tees? The correct answer is none of these. The most important accessory is…mosquito repellent. Spray it on liberally and often, it will make your round more enjoyable. I chose this course because the reviews for the most part were very favorable. Some of the customer comments: really nice course; great staff; great food; nice relaxing round; poor customer service; best food in area; and usually not busy. Following are our thoughts.
The bugs were out; the clouds were forming; but at least the sun was covered from view and that helped in the 100 degree heat. Hole #1 is a straight par 4 of 320 yards from the senior tees. There are trees on both left and right but they are not dense, so you can play through them if your initial tee shot of the day is wild. The fairways today were patchy and soggy. Wetness means mosquitos and they commenced feasting on our bodies. Note to self, add mosquito repellent to my golf bag!
Normally at Hole #2 the fairway takes a bend to the left with your approach shot needing to clear the creek in front of the green. Today, as we were notified at the clubhouse, the (temporary) green is to the right, hidden behind the trees. We did not take the short route over the trees at this 315 yard par 4. However you play it, it’s a fun hole. They have done a nice job setting up the course for anyone wanting to play 18 holes. The men play the front 9 from the red tees and the back 9 from the blue tees. Same thing is true for color combinations for seniors and women.
Hole #3 is a par 5 with a little bend to the left. The course is in rough shape even for July. Their website states, it’s a hidden gem and the best kept secret along the panhandle of Texas. If that’s true, I’d hate to play some of the other courses along this route. At the fourth hole the fairway continues to disappoint as it bends to the green to the left. There is tree trouble on both sides and a very wayward shot to the left may find the creek. As the day progresses, it has gotten very muggy and thick with mosquitos. The blood from the killing is either coming from the deer we have seen or my playing partner, Mr. 5-Wood.
As we exit the green, and make our way to Hole #5, we encounter one of the mosquito targets (deer) and a bridge marked – Danger weak bridge. We successfully made it across to the par 3. The hole looks undemanding, however, if the tee shot is left or long, forget recording par on the scorecard. There are no bunkers on the course so far, but there are plenty of barren hardpan areas on the fairways. Hole #6 is the first real dogleg on the course. If you have a big fade (slice) this hole is perfect for you. If you have a draw (hook) like me, you have to launch your tee shot over the trees to find the fairway. You don’t want to be down the right side of this hole for two reasons: dense trees and dense mosquitos!
Hole #7 is a par 3 and the only thing that makes it a little challenging is its length of 172 yards. Hole #8 is a dogleg left with trees protecting the curve in the fairway. The prudent play is the wide open right side. The final hole is a straight par 4 with a filthy pond to carry with your drive. You may think the pond is not in play, but your swing is greatly affected by the mosquitos dive bombing your head.
Rating – Bogey (27 out of 60): A quick review. What is the most important accessory you need when playing this course? The correct answer is mosquito repellent. One of the reasons we picked this course it was about halfway on our trip from Albuquerque to Oklahoma City. It is also about 30 minutes south of Amarillo and I-40, so you might want to consider playing a little closer to the Amarillo area.
Let’s see how we compared to a few of the aforementioned reviews. Really nice course – I think you know were I stand; Great staff – they were very nice; Great food – the burgers were okay; Nice relaxing round – sure, if you don’t mind killing mosquitos; Poor customer service – I disagree; Best food in area – not saying much about the town’s other eateries; Usually not busy – I concur. The last thing you need to do is find a restroom and wipe all of Mr. 5-Wood’s blood that the mosquitos have sucked out of him, off your body.
19501 Chaparral Rd., Canyon, TX 79015; 806-499-3397; www.canyontexascountryclub.com