Date: 2007-Oct-29 Review by Alberta Bound
Greens were on the small side and in good condition with an average type of fringe. There were a number of bunkers surrounding the greens with decent sand. Some of the bunkers required some trimming but they had plenty of rakes. Since the course slopes toward the valley some of the putts that you face will actually break in the opposite direction then expected.
There is plenty of elevation change from fairway to fairway and from tee to fairway. Most of the fairways are lined with mature pines, firs and spruce. The trees add a lot to the look of the various holes. There are generous landing areas on most holes but there are at least three holes on the front that will require accuracy. The first cut was good and gave way to trimmed rough on almost all the holes. Once again watch for sloping fairways to the valley. In fact the score card has this warning printed in red for the description of the first hole. There were a few fairway bunkers but not too many (about five). There are markers at 100, 150 and 200 yards.
The course has the normal three tees, red, white and blue. They were flat and showed a lot of play. They had ball washers, sand/seed, good signs, benches and a number of them had flowers planted around the tees.
Mountain Side is probably the oldest course in the valley at 50 years old. Because of this, the design does not reflect modern thinking. The course goes south for 4 holes and turns and comes back to the clubhouse. The back nine does the same. The third hole is a pretty par three with a pond and lots of rocks and a creek at the back. The monster hole number four which we played into a strong south wind was tough. This is a good hole not because of its length, but because it has wonderful views of Columbia lake as you advance towards the green. Seven is short dog leg right (278 yards), long hitters could cut the corner. It is also one of only two dog legs on the course. As you reach the clubhouse on nine and 18 you tee from elevated tees that almost demand that you grip it and rip it. Number 15 is another hole that requires the correct club from the tee. It is a short par 4 at 323 yards dog leg left. The fairway narrows so you need to pick the club that gets you to the spot you want for your second shot to a slightly raised green. Remember the OB on the left.
The green fees are within a couple of dollars of the fees for the rest of the courses from Golden to Kimberly. Since fees are the same I would rather play the other newer courses.
The course is relatively long at 6552 and 6212 from the blue and white tees. Since half the holes face into the wind on most days it plays even longer. The slope is 121 from both tees indicating a decent test of golf. There is not a lot of trouble off the tees as far as bunkers or water. Water does come into play on five holes. There are five par fours that are 400 yards or more and one par five that is 600 yards in length. The other three par fives are all under 500 yards. The par threes are all of normal length and there are two short par fours.
Once again as I have indicated for all the courses in the valley the scenery is excellent. At Mt. Side you get some great views of the lake when you get to the south end. Also the lake in front of the clubhouse with the flowers presents a nice view from the clubhouse or the 9th and 18th tees. The trees are mature and frame most fairways.
All the staff were friendly and helpful. The staff in the pro shop were very good at taking our calls and arranging a tee time for us.
The clubhouse is a small cedar building which fits into the mountain scenery. The pro shop is well stocked and the adjoining eating area is typical of many clubhouses. They have a nice deck looking out on the 9th and 18th green.
As part of the resort which features the famous hot springs you could relax after a round and let the warm waters heal your aching muscles. There is also a decent par three which you might want to play to practice your irons. They have a putting green, permit carts on fairways as they have limited cart paths. The motorized carts have rain covers for your clubs. The score card is very good with a description and map of each hole.
Mountain Side is a very popular course with the golfers that visit this valley. It also has a lot of timeshares and the hot springs. With Riverside across the highway and the par three you could just stay here and play the two courses on any long weekend.