Rustic Canyon Golf Course – October 2017 I was heading to LA to visit friends and looked up James Campbell who I met a couple of years ago on PEI and had golfed with him at my home track.
I was staying with him overnight before we teed it up at Rustic Canyon. We both asked friends of ours to join our round. James’ asked rocker Mike Coons. Mike spent his youth on stage as the lead singer of the heavy metal band Laaz Rockit and my mate was Peter Flanigan who is a fellow golf blogger I have known online for a couple of years.
They had all played at Rustic before but this was my first time.
We set out in style in James’ Porsche with the top down and our clubs nestled in the back. We did have to remove our drivers and woods to pop them in separately, but I must say cruising down the highway on a glorious Californian day in a Porsche was quite a nice treat.
As we arrived at the course and went to check in, I watched a lady pop her clubs down in front of us and I noted the EWGA tag. I stopped to chat with Jeannie and told her I had golfed with the wonderful women of the EWGA in Long Island.
She asked what I was doing in town and I explained that I was on a whirlwind tour of LA, India and Nepal before returning to Australia for a couple of months and told her about Fairways. Jeannie asked me to email her as she loves what we are doing and would be looking at some way to give back when she retires and felt we would be a good fit.
James vanished while I was chatting so I headed to the putting green and ran into Peter. As James pulled up in the cart, Mike turned up and as introductions were made our group was announced as next off the tee.
Rustic Canyon is an oasis amongst the dry hills and is weirdly a little like a desert links course. I was scoring for myself as I like to see how I go on a new course but the boys were out for fun.
I started with a bogey, triple and par and as we teed off the par 3 4th hole, Mike and I turned to watch the group behind us approach the green on the 3rd. We both let out a whoop of delight and cheered as we watched one of the group sink an amazing eagle from around 120 yards out.
Our group were certainly not going to break any records but we all had moments of greatness on the course although none of us were consistent.
I kept thinking that there was water in the burns across the course but they were filled with rocks, lizards and cacti. One of my drives ended up under a cactus on the 5th and while I took a drop, I watched Mike perform a little golf magic and put his 3rd shot feet from the pin.
There was lots of laughs with the boys (not just at my golf) and I was delighted to see a roadrunner on the course. I didn’t spot any coyotes however when James had told me there were roadrunners and coyotes around the course I didn’t quite believe him. I honestly thought the roadrunner was a made up bird purely for cartoons.
The course was quite hard, your ball got a good run and the greens were super fast. I shot multiple balls past the hole but mostly managed to drop them on the way back.
It was hot and while I was in a cart I felt like I was baking. I had forgotten sunscreen and was very glad Peter came prepared.
A triple was my worst hole of the day which I was very happy with considering some of the rubbish coming off my club.
On the 10th the boys went down the right but I was on the dirt to the left then through the bushes and in the hazard, then in the bunker on the right and I continued limping to the green. With awful connections of every club I selected I was happy taking a snowman on the par 5 as it could have been so much worse.
I preferred the back 9 with the changes in elevation and the outlook from the finishing holes. Standing on the 16th tee overlooking the course we stopped to snap a couple of photos.
My wayward drive on the 16th ended up OB and I had to check myself and ask about snakes before I started hunting in the dry grass surrounding the course.
While there is no problem with snakes in Canada, in Australia you do have to be wary and I try to remember asking when I am playing in another country.
Mike entertained us with stories about life on tour and had us laughing at photos of his big (and I mean big) hair. He sported quite the bouffant and I might have teased him a little.
It was so good to meet and tee it up with Peter after all our tweets and FB conversations.
Post round James and I stopped to eat a fantastic meal (we were both starving) and chat about Fairways and junior golf around the world as when I first met him I hadn’t even had the idea for Fairways then.
It was a great day and I look forward to returning to LA and teeing it up again with the boys.