Tucked away in Western Colorado between the colorful red rock canyons and green valley sits Grand Junction, which is known as an outdoor mecca. Avid outdoor enthusiasts from around the country trek to GJ for rock climbing, cycling, boating, hiking, OHV'ing, hunting, and water sports. You may not know that Grand Junction is also home to some of the most scenic golf courses in the state. From challenging 18-hole championship courses to a more casual 9-hole, the area boasts 260 sunny days a year and mild winters. So it's possible to play nearly year-round in Grand Junction. Here are four excellent options to hit the links on your next visit:
1. Tiara Rado Golf Course
Holes: 18; Par: 71; Slope: 127; Length: 6442 yards U.S.G.A. Rating: 70.5
The public Tiara Rado Golf Course is bordered on one side by the Colorado National Monument contrasted by views of the Bookcliffs as well as the world’s largest flat-top mountain, the Grand Mesa. It’s also a bird sanctuary that hosts more than 90 bird species a year. Newly renovated, Tiara Rado’s wide-open back nine has golfers of all levels grinning ear to ear. The course features four sets of tees for different skill levels.
2. The Golf Club at Redlands Mesa
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Holes: 18; Par: 72 ; Slope 137; Length: 7007 yards U.S.G.A. Rating: 72.7
Sitting at the base of Colorado National Monument and carved through rugged red canyons, The Golf Club at Redlands Mesa is Grand Junction's newest golf course, and it has quickly become rather famous. In fact, it was ranked the top public golf course in Colorado 2017 by Golfweek. Called “The Rock” by locals, this course is known for its raw beauty, difficulty, elevated tees, and dramatic elevation changes. Designed by award-winning golf architect Jim Engh, nearly every hole has a jaw-dropping view. Its layout seamlessly incorporates its surroundings with large rock outcroppings, natural water features, and sand traps filled with local desert sand.
3. Lincoln Park
Holes: 9; Par: 72 ; Slope: 125; Length: 6680 yards USGA rating: 72.0
If you are looking to knock off a quick nine, Lincoln Park is the place. It’s less than 10 minutes from Downtown Grand Junction. The play is fast, and the course is pleasantly walkable. It was built in 1922 and is the oldest course in Grand Junction. The course has six sets of tees and 10 acres of practice greens as well. Best of all, it’s incredibly affordable at just $9 for 9 holes!!
4. Chipeta Golf Course
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Holes: 18; Par: 59; Slope: 90; Length: 3835 yards USGA rating: 59.6
Bring your A-game to the short game on Chipeta. The short-but-difficult Moat Hole is legendary, and the many water hazards are feared. This executive course is shorter than a traditional par-72 course, but with a few 4-par holes in there, it’s perfect (and challenging) for all levels of golfers. Plan on using every club in the bag while here, but don't let that scare you off. Built by the Wilson Golf Group, it opened in 1997. It also features a driving range and practice greens. While there are no sand traps on the course, there is a sand trap practice area.
Written by Shaine Smith for Matcha in partnership with Visit Grand Junction.