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The Hideout, Redlands Mesa + Devil's Thumb
« on: May 16, 2003, 07:45:13 AM »
I have just returned from what turned out to be a short 573 mile loop. From my house to Devil's Thumb door to door 3 hrs. 52 mins., Over the mountain on the 550, geology, geology geology. Amazing stuff that is only accentuated when you get to DT and see the adobe clay mounds. DT was built on two diferent and distinct land forms. The course starts out and finishes up on a flat that Mr. Phelps was able to design some decent golf holes with very interesting green complexes. The largeness of the surrounds made for real illusion with his use of centerline bunkering. On the third hole, one is transited into the area nearest the adobe mounds with a downhill short par 4 of 342 yds. From the blue tees I played, my nose smelled the huge right bunker and just bunted a 3 iron to the 100 yd. marker. I felt if the hole had been a little shorter it would have been classified (in my mind) with #9 at CPC and #7 at SH. The almost cader-like use of the adobe mounds not only made for great visuals but demanding shots. More than one hole requires the carry of a crossing ridge of the barren clay and can be very intimidating, visually. The real tell to how succesful this course is was clearly seen on the faces of the locals who frequent it. They looked like kids stealing candy.

A short hop to Redlands Mesa in Grand Junction and one is floored by the massive red rocked mesa's. Jim Engh made just as impressive of a golf course with awesome greensites and great variety of golf holes. The backnine is destined to be houseless but even the houses that are on the front take nothing away from what I considered to be a most enjoyable nine holes. Albeit cartball, the feel was as top notch as golf gets. The staff and facilities were an understated elegance without the price or attitude.

Now the trip turns back south thru Moab Utah and some of the most interesting red rock country I have ever seen. A slight climb back to 7000 ft and with a 2.5 hr. drive I arrive in Monticello Utah. I was gratified to see that on the city's welcome sign "The Home of The Hideout" was prominent. Forrest Richardson has truely put tons of love into the project which is on a difficult site. Steep enough ravine like canyons dominated the land and is penal enough to only have 15 bunkers. With only 80k cu/yds of moved earth it's A great match play golf course with wonderful movement. I used every club in the bag both rounds and was often haunted by the illusion of what lies ahead. The western most parcel is as serene as the monastary at Malibu. Fun, fun, fun was expressed on the faces of the towns people, especially one who is the son of the former courses pro. The kid looked to be in his fifties and told me he quit his job and planned on getting his cost per round down to .50 cents.  Enough can't be said about the community. The support and appreciation for Forrest's work is sure to evolve this course into one of America's best clubs.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:05 PM by -1 »

Norbert P

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The Hideout, Redlands Mesa + Devil's Thumb
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2003, 01:54:49 PM »
 Adam, Glad to hear you enjoyed Highway 550 - it's one of my favorite drives in America.  Glad also that you got to play some great courses.  Hideout is on my list and when I ever make plans I'll bug you for a trip.  
  Are the greens at Devil's Thumb toughening up?  They were a bit crumbly when I played them last Fall.  Did you use the courtesy cart on the 2 hole loop (13,14 ?) or did you ride the whole thing.  It is, like you say, a great playground for us children.  

  Also, how'd you like the extremely terraced green of that split fairway 13 (I think).  Pin on top is deadly and I could barely hold green - while putting.  

 Red Mesa is quite a spectacle of color and geology !  Is that huge boulder still defying gravity in the crutch of elbow on #14 dogleg right par 4?   You didn't happen to overclub on that par 3 8th with the inclined trampoline rock at the back did you?  I tossed a ball at it when leaving the green and it almost bounded over me noggin.   Exciting moments on tee there.  Did you like the Matterhorn tee grounds on the par three 17th?  We set up base camp at the White Tees.

It was $75.00 when I went but I heard it has come down.  Is this so?

  One thing that Jim Engh said about designing that course is that he "had to make the features huge so they wouldn't be dwarfed by the enormity of the nature." (paraphrased from memory).  Is that ego or is it rational balance consideration?

  Thanks for speaking up for Small Town Golf.  Scotland/Irish ideals CAN exist here.                
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:05 PM by -1 »
"Golf is only meant to be a small part of one’s life, centering around health, relaxation and having fun with friends/family." R"C"M

Norbert P

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The Hideout, Redlands Mesa + Devil's Thumb
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2003, 02:22:37 PM »

  Anybody know what Hideout's web address?
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »
"Golf is only meant to be a small part of one’s life, centering around health, relaxation and having fun with friends/family." R"C"M


Re: The Hideout, Redlands Mesa + Devil's Thumb
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2003, 02:44:40 PM »
I had the pleasure in playing The Hideout last Saturday and I offer a few comments.

First, the course is still experiencing turf issues -- specifically with the putting surfaces -- several of which were partially covered to encourage growth.

Second, the land the course occupies is definitley a winner. It rolls and pitches and the manner by which the hole have beenlayed out is done very well.

The first three holes are fairly routine but starting at the 4th (390 yards) you face a mid-length par-4 that provides a wide range of choices. I actually tried to drive the green and ended up just short left -- but I was able to keep the ball on the mound just in front of the green for a bird's eye look at the flagstick. HOWEVER, I also pulled a tee shot and ended up in a nearby canyon and this manner of reward / penalty makes the hole.

You also have the option in playing short on this dog-leg right before you plunge down a hill. This allows the golfer to play from approximately 150 yards to the target.

One of the weakest holes follows with the 5th. It's merely 375 yards -- plays downhill and really possesses anything of note. A tweaking on the bunkering to protect the hole is sorely needed.

From the 6th to the 9th you have top notch golf holes. The 6th slides to the right and plays 415 yards. The 7th is an uphill par-3 of 172 and the green is v-e-r-y deep. The 8th is a wonderful mid-length par-4 that borrows some of the strategies you previously covered with the 4th. Here at the 8th you must hit your tee shot to about 240-250 yards before the fairway ends and plunges downhill. The green is also well done --particularly when the pin is either front right or back right.

The 9th is an absolute delightful par-5. You must cut the corner right because you will run out of fairway if you fail to do so. The hole plays 590 yards but can be reached in two by strong players. The green is deliciously positioned as a three-level target and is protected by three large trees that clearly come into play for those thinking of getting home in two or for those who hit their second too far left. A superb hole.

The back nine has a number of fine holes but I will concentrate on just two -- the uphill 16th at 405 yards and the downhill 18th at 475 yards. The 16th is one of the finest mid-length par-4's I've played. The hole rises 30-40 feet or thereabouts from the tee and the fairway is slightly banked to the right. You must decide what club to play -- I will caution those who attempt to blow out with the driver because if you push it a hair you will find timerland. Pull it left and you're blocked. The green is also protected by two pinon trees and they give you a tight quarter to land your approach to a green that is appropriate in its size.

The 18th at 475 yards is a stunning conclusion to the day. The hole dog-legs left but any player who attempts to cut of too much will soon find out the outcome. It's likely to be a wet one as a creek moves laterally to theline of play. WHAT A GREAT ADDITION!!!

Even when you find the fairway the approach must be over water and to a green that is angled quite nicely.

The Hideout has solid potential to be a must play layout. There are conditioning issues (the greens) but it clearly has plenty of character and will hold your attention. I look forward to returning in the very near future and see how things progress -- Monticello is clearly a destination for the golf lover.

P.S. I'd love for the folks at The Hideout to do the following:

1). Play the pedestrian par-5 14th from the blue tee at the par-3 11th as the new championship tee.

2). Bump back the 18th for another championship tee because the downhill aspect, coupled with the altitude, can make the hole play a bit short for the better player.

3). Change the 15th hole in some way (280 yards / par-4). It is just a blah hole that really is a transition from one piece of the property to the other.

4). Add a back tee 30-40 yards to the 6th. The hole is elevated and the better player can simply cut-off too much distance by flying over the trees.

Just a few mumblings from the 19th hole ... ;)
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »


Re: The Hideout, Redlands Mesa + Devil's Thumb
« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2003, 03:33:00 PM »
Slagbert- So many answers and I forgot the questions. Good thing I squint down the page and refresh. SO here goes;

the greens at Devil's thumb were fine. And I'd go so far as to say that when they aren't coming out of aeration they'd be awesome. One of the amazingly difficult things to do is grow grass on that clay and the gripes people spout about the playing surface isn't that way closer to the center of play. I found nothing horrible about the conditions.

 I am a lazy bum on these road trips. :'( :'(

The 13 th green wasn't tiered so much as it was severely uphill for the first 3/4's and then downhill off the back. I thought the shot from above was cool, but I would've like to have seen it land. But the uncertainty and anticipation was cool too.

The boulder still stands and I can see why this is supposedly Mr. Engh's favorite. I busted a perfect drive to about forty two yards and had a perfect alley next to that boulder to the front right flag. I chose unwisely and tried to flop it and the ball bounded off the back. As i was leaving the green i saw the three tiers that looked like waves cascding down the hill. I wondered if with a back left pin and soft greens some of the Matt ward's of the world might have a go?

I did hit two balls on #8 because the first was weak but very safe just short of the putting surface I then hit a solid ball and ended up 4 inches from the base of that rock over hanging. Beautiful Par 3 that reminded me of Spy's #12 because of the shape of the green and the pond left.

Matt- I found the land parcel area around the 5th hole to be spiritual and the hole was fun to play. "It doesn't need to be any more than that" is my absolute favorite Gib Papazian quote and it fits because any more interference from man's hand isn't really necesary. The 14th from the 11th tee is pretty cool because it so elavated but the truth is that the 14th is the only original corridor that Jack Snyder designed back in 61'. But, Instead of the bunker well in front of the green someone had put a maintenance shed in that spot after Jack had left. Almost road holian ;D ;D
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by 1056376800 »


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