If you’ve never been to southern Utah, you are missing out on some of the most beautiful terrain in the world: Red Rock Country. In Red Rock Country there are stunning red rock plateaus, canyons and mountains. An old wives tale says the reason the rocks are red is because they are burned by the desert sun. If you go there in the summer, you too will turn red.
In the heart of this beautiful terrain in Washington County (5 minutes north of St. George, Utah) is Green Spring Golf Course. In 1991 Golf Digest rated Green Spring one of the top five new courses in the country.
The first few holes of Green Spring are not too difficult. If you miss the fairway left or right, you’re in “the desert.” The desert is comprised of very fine red sand, cactus, tumble weeds and some other desert bushes. The greens are usually lightning fast so you have to stay focused on your putting.
Once you get to the par 3 hole #5 the terrain changes dramatically. The tee shot goes over a large red rock canyon about 175 yards. There is no margin for error. You either make it to the green or lose a ball to a red rock death. (See 2nd picture).
Hole #6 is the most difficult hole on the course. It is a par 4 at 449 yards which parallels the aforementioned canyon. If you slice or push one right, you are back in the canyon. The approach shot is usually a long iron or fairway wood back over the canyon. This shot is incredibly difficult. I had a group of 20 guys play this hole and a par won a skin on it.
The rest of the front winds up and down some hills with desert on each side of the fairways.
The back nine is a whole new ball game. #11 is a short dog right par 4 with a green surrounded by water. You can’t hit driver (unless you’re short), and the green is very hard to stick. The rest of the back 9 progresses right up the side of a red rock plateau, down, up and back down again. There are some amazing holes which require long tee shots and precise approach shots over red rock canyons. The scenery is absolutely spectacular.
When it opened the condition of Green Spring was top notch. In the late 90’s there were some years where the course condition degraded, but now it’s back in form.
The pro at Green Spring is a very nice chap named Nick Neely. Nick is an old buddy of our group and plays with us regularly.
Green Spring is about an hour and 40 minutes from Las Vegas and worth the drive if you are in Vegas. If you put a course as wonderful as Green Spring in Vegas, the price would be $300-400. In the middle of the summer GS is a mere $33 with cart!
If you plan on playing in the summer you’ll need a ton of water and sunscreen as the temperature goes well over 100F. In the summer it gets so hot they reduce the price to entice you to brave the heat and play.
Green Spring is one of my all time favorites. Rating 8/10
18 holes – par 72 | 6,629 yards / public
Winter: (Oct. 1-Jan. 31)
9 holes – $21.00 w/cart $27.00
18 holes – $40.00 w/cart $51.00
Spring: (Feb. 1-April. 30)
9 holes – $24.00 w/cart $30.00
18 holes – $46.00 w/cart $57.00
Summer: (June 1-Sep.30)
9 holes – $12.00 w/cart $18.00
18 holes – $22.00 w/cart $33.00