Dobson Ranch: Mesa, Ariz. golf course review
15 Jul 2014
see also: Dobson Ranch Golf Course, All Course Reviews

By Jason Skoda, AmateurGolf.com Player Staff

There are so many options for golf in Arizona that it takes something extra to keep them coming back for another round.So many of the tracks in the Phoenix and Tucson areas look the same with the desert landscape lining each fairway. The stark green fairways stand out among the brittle brush, desert shrubs and every species of cacti native to the Grand Canyon State.

It is why Dobson Ranch Golf Course in Mesa is a refreshing challenge.

The 30-year-old course has no desert to be found and is nothing but green grass. The tree-lined fairways are more likely to be found in northern Arizona or the Midwest.

It allows for good scrambling opportunities for wayward drives on the par-72, 6,593-yard course. Balls are easily found unless it finds one of the backyards of the surrounding neighborhood or waterways.

The course itself is manageable with plenty of straightforward and open holes, but the work that has to be done on the greens can be difficult.

The pin placement is vital on most of the large, two-tiered and undulating greens.

Take the signature 155-yard, par-3 No. 4 that has water guarding the right side and bunker in between the green and wet stuff.

If that wasn’t enough, the green is two-tiered – high behind the bunker – and close to be a false front for anything that comes up short. Unless the pin is at the bottom of the first ridge and your ball is below the flag there are no straight putts.The par 5s, including three on the front nine, are reachable, but not without finesse by cutting the corner or drawing around the 90-degree dog- left.

The par-four, 417-yard No. 8 is one of those holes that tests need to hit the driver. The smart play is to take five-wood or mid-iron and hit it toward the fairway bunker on the left side of the fairway for a nice look into the elevated green.But there is something about being in that tee box that makes you pull out the big dog despite the fact that trees overhang on the right side of the box and a creek leads to a pond along the right side.

The smart play is to simply put one out there and reap the rewards, but for some reason more often than not the challenge wins out.

There are several challenges all throughout the 18-hole trip around the fairly-priced, city-owned course.

And the best part?

There is no dessert to be found, making it a unique play that separates Dobson Ranch from most other courses in the Valley.

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