Salt Lake City golf is about as good as golf gets. In fact, Golf Digest has named the Utah capital the best golfing city in the entire country on more than one occasion. There are nine full-service golf courses in Salt Lake City, and these courses have all skill levels covered. When golfing enthusiasts aren't teeing it up within the city limits on a Salt Lake City escape, there will be other courses to consider in the state that can be worth a side trip. You don't have to leave the immediate area, however, if you want to explore a host of golfing opportunities, and if nothing else, a quick round at one of the 9-hole courses should be easy to fit on the itinerary. You'll just want to remember to make reservations, as all of the local courses require them.
The best golf in Salt Lake City can arguably be played on the Wingpointe Course, which is found near the airport. This par-72, 18-hole championship course is a links-style gem that aims to mimic the famed courses of St. Andrews and Muirfield in the UK. The architect, Arthur Hills, has been credited with creating an immaculate stretch of holes, and for those who want the full challenge, the course measures out to 7,100 yards from the back tees. Various tee box options are available, and should you need to work on your game, the practice facilities are more than adequate. The driving range is one of the best around. Regardless of what you have in mind for your visit to this prized Salt Lake City golf course, it stays open ten months out of the year on average, as is true of the other valley courses.
Some of the other top-rated golf courses in Salt Lake City can be found at Mountain Dell in the Parley's Canyon area. There are two courses at Mountain Dell, and they include a lake course and a canyon course. Both are 18-hole, par-72 courses and provide golfers with stunning views all around. In addition to admiring the surrounding mountains and lakes, golfers who are teeing it up at Mountain Dell can also expect to admire wildlife. Elk, moose, and deer figure among the most commonly seen animals at this excellent Salt Lake City golf destination. When you're not playing gold in Parley's Canyon, by the way, it is also an excellent place to go hiking.
When it comes to the best golf in Salt Lake City, you might be surprised to know that the 9-hole courses get a lot of respect. The two most challenging 9-hole golf courses in Salt Lake City are arguably the par-36 Forest Dale Course and the par-27 Jordan River Course, though they aren't reserved for experts. These are also excellent beginners' courses, as is true of the 9-hole Nibley Park Course. The Forest Dale Course, it is worth noting, was built in 1905 and is the oldest course in all of Utah. In 1986, renovations brought the course up to speed, and these days, the table-top greens present quite the challenge. As for the Jordan River course, it offers scenic river views and is known for its established trees, while the Nibley Park Course is renowned for being the oldest public course in the state. The Forest Dale Course was originally a private course, which is why the Nibley Park Course is considered the oldest public course.
If you want to enjoy the best golf in Salt Lake City, venturing out into the surrounding area is worth considering. Not far from nearby Park City, for example, the wonderful Crater Springs Golf Course offers one of the top 18-hole courses around, while those who enjoy playing executive par-3 courses won't want to miss the nine-hole Cottonwood Club Golf Course. Since these courses are found in the mountains, they don't tend to stay open as long as the valley courses, with April through October being the common season.
Image: Rick McClain