Del Norte golf course is located on the north coast’s 101 corridor in northern California just below the Oregon border. Whether you’re just traveling through or visiting friends or relatives at Crescent City’s Pelican Bay Penal Institution, you might want to consider stretching your legs at this picturesque municipal course.
The green fees are as reasonable as you’ll find anywhere,(9 holes@$18 seniors@$15/ 18holes@$26 seniors@$21, and the burger bar is a favorite with the locals. Although you may mistake the club house for the cart shed, the staff is gracious and the grounds are beautiful and well kept.
This is a 9 hole course that uses multiple T areas to create an 18 hole experience. The front nine T’s are red and the back are blue. The following is a synopsis of the course from this golfer’s perspective.
No. 1 is a straightforward gently ascending 430yd par 4, and ranked 3rd in difficulty because of the distance.
To find the T area No. 2, I had to refer to the diagram on the back of the scorecard, which shows an upside down slingshot, the right leg being No. 2. From here, it’s a straight forward 375yd par 4.
No. 4 is a 386yd par 4 that traverses a steep dell that you climb in and out of with the green sitting atop a hill. Being unfamiliar with the course and it’s distance markers, I’d be lost without my Bushnell range finder.
No. 5 is a 185yd par 3 that has you teeing off well above the green. With the probable descending roll, you’ll want to club down. My 160yd got me about 10yds short of the green
No. 6 is a 320yd par 4 with enough bend in the fairway, that the green is around the corner. With the range finder, I shot a tree on the far side of the fairway, at the bend and got 220yds, so a 180 club should put me in the middle and about 140yds out. Bingo!
No.7 is similar but it bends left enough to qualify as a dogleg. Once again, the rangefinder gives me a 240yd reading so I’ll use a 200yd plus fairway wood to get in good position for my approach. When I got to the T, I realized I’d grabbed my driver. Deciding this must have been Divine Intervention, I went ahead and nutted the ball right along the left edge of the fairway, leaving my approach 80yds out.
No.8 is a 490yd par 5, the only par 5 on the front. The fairway is straight and wide, so you can let the big dog out of the bag. My second shot was still wide open and 250yd out so just about any club selection strategy would work to set up for the approach shot. I pulled my approach a little right and had a 15yd chip up the hill.
No.9 is a 345yd par4 dogleg right. You can just see the 100yd marker at the bend. Being left-handed, I managed a draw along the left side, leaving me set up about 100yds out. If my shot had been any longer, I would have been in a lateral water hazard I wasn’t aware of. Lucky can be just as helpful as being good sometimes.
I ended up paring No. 9 for a 7 over 42. Being a 15 handicap, that makes me as content as a gopher in soft dirt! Del Norte golf course is a nice straight,wide open pretty course. I’d recommend it for anyone who is traveling through.