Overshadowed by the likes of Bandon Dunes, Sand Valley, Streamsong, and others, Mesquite, Nevada is not exactly at top-of-mind when it comes to highly regarded golf destinations in America. But following an incredible weekend golf trip, I am here to tell you that Mesquite golf courses might simply build up to one of the best golf destinations in the country.
Mesquite, a town somewhat forgotten (as Las Vegas is just a little over an hour away), is home to many golf courses that are downright fun to play. The terrain is, as one guy at the craps table put it, “like playing on Mars, if Mars had lush fairways and pure rolling greens!”
While courses like Conestoga, Falcon Ridge, Oasis Palmer and Canyons (all within a 10-minute drive of the larger hotels) shouldn’t be overlooked, the crown jewel of Mesquite is actually a course that many of you may have already “played.”
Since opening in 2000, Wolf Creek Golf Club gained some national acclaim—but most probably remember it from its inclusion as a featured course in the EA SPORTS ™ Tiger Woods PGA TOUR ® 2009 video game. For me at least, I know that’s the first time I can remember “playing” the course, and I also remember almost playing it exclusively because it was the most fun course on that game. I also remember the first time that someone told me that it was an actual course (which came as a surprise)!
Fast forward 9 years, and I was gearing up for a golf trip to Mesquite, where I would be teeing it up at Wolf Creek for what I considered to be my 500th time… but this would be first time with a driver in my hand instead of an Xbox controller.
I had rarely been this excited to play a course in my life, and I have played some great places. What proceeded was a 4.5-hour delight of unbelievably scenic views and hitting shots that are rarely found on any course in the world. From 240-yard forced carries over rock outcroppings that have stood for millions and millions of years, to having to hit a 6-iron (185 stock yardage with my P760) 140 yards up a 40-degree slope on the par-3 2nd hole – every shot at Wolf Creek is completely unique.
While playing this course twice would have been beneficial, as lots of shots require some level of course knowledge, the first time around is completely enjoyable—and it might just be the most fun I have ever had playing any course in the U.S.
After finishing the round at Wolf Creek, the rest of the guys in the trip wanted to go back out and play again. With a favorable replay rate, we were able to get in another 9 holes before daylight became an issue. While it was hard to leave the course, the allure of the craps tables and sounds of the auto-shuffler were pulling at us.
The casino at our hotel (Eureka) is straight out a movie. Think less “Ocean’s 11 Vegas” and more “Lake Tahoe Casual” where the table minimums are $5 everywhere you look. When you can spend 2-3 hours with your best friends standing around a craps table or blackjack table betting and reminiscing on the round from that day— that was where the guys’ trip really started to take off. With the table minimums being low and the crowd being subdued, it’s a relaxing place to play some games after a great day of golf.
The next day, we played 36 holes at Oasis Golf Club, which we came to find out was right next door to Wolf Creek. Oasis has two courses, the Palmer and the Canyons. And while these courses were slightly more traditional, they still had some amazing views. It was hard to follow up a round and a half at Wolf Creek, but I would say that these courses were fun and in great shape… they more than held their own, but we weren’t exactly itching to find out what the replay rate was like we were at Wolf Creek.
After another night at the casino… we were ready for Conestoga.
As you quickly realize after talking to people at the tables for a couple hours each night, lots of the patrons are also in Mesquite for golf trips, so they all have their recommendations about where to play and what to do with many of these guys coming back for the 3rd, 4th, and 5th times.
Almost to a man, every one of them said, “you’re playing Conestoga, right?” So immediately, we knew that there was something to this course, and we were thankful to be playing. It’s important to note that Wolf Creek and Oasis were about 5 minutes from the hotel, which was so nice! Conestoga represented the longest drive from the hotel, but since we were leaving later that day, we didn’t mind the drive as it was on the way back to Las Vegas. The drive (which was our longest) took us 12 minutes.
Anyways, Conestoga proved to be everything that the random guys had talked about. The views were amazing, and while it had similarities to Wolf Creek, there wasn’t a lot of course knowledge necessary after the 3rd or 4th hole. Thankfully, they give you a pretty detailed yardage book on your cart before you start, but I rarely looked at it.
This course was an awesome way to finish our trip. We started on a high note with Wolf Creek, played 36 on a pretty stock layout with great views at Oasis, and finished up on a course that you could play for the rest of your life like Conestoga.
The trip to Mesquite delivered in all aspects that you would want from a golf/buddies trip.
Easy to get to… check! Awesome golf with a variety of courses… check!
Great things to do after the round (mostly gamble)… check!
Minimal amount of driving from hotel to course… check!
And of course, the weather was phenomenal (early November)!
When you set out to plan a golf trip, the one thing to keep in mind is to deliver an experience that will have the other players asking about the next trip before the current trip is even over. I can honestly say after our experience in Mesquite, we started planning our 2019 trip the following week. We have never repeated destinations for this trip in 7 years, but when we do Mesquite, will be the first place that we come back to.
But that’s a story for another time.
If you enjoyed this story, be sure to check out TaylorMade’s Las Vegas Golf Course Guide to hear about fun, affordable, and accessible courses just over an hour away from Mesquite.
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