Barona Creek Golf Club completes renovations on back nine

By |  September 5, 2019 0 Comments

Origins Golf Design successfully completed phase one of renovations at Barona Creek Golf Club.

The course is an integral part of the Barona Resort & Casino in Lakeside, Calif. The nationally ranked course has a fresh look emerging with improvements to the back nine’s greens, surrounds and bunkers.

The greens were cored out to follow the original construction and built back up to the previous contours, according to Origins Golf Design’s Co-founder Todd Eckenrode, ASGCA. Properly mapped with GreenScan technology prior to demolition, the contractor was able to restore them to nearly the exact contouring when reconstructing the green.

“During construction, it was discovered that most of the bunkers exhibited a lot of sand buildup on the edges due to over 20 years of sand splash from bunker shots and the top-dressing program,” Eckenrode said. “The greens renovation was more directed to the age, functionality and maintainability of the greens with minimal work done to change contours or original size.”

Photo by Aidan Bradley

Photo by Aidan Bradley

The bunkers were primarily replicated to the prior design and edging, but there were detrimental effects due to two decades of play with poor ingress/egress and sand splash buildup from golfers’ shots.

Over the years, almost all perimeters of the greens shrunk on average by about five or six feet. This, coupled with the steeper tie-ins from bunker buildup, reduced potential pin placements. The green expansion allowed the design team to regain some of the wing hole locations.

Since its opening, Barona Creek Golf Club has consistently ranked amongst California’s top golf courses. GolfWeek ranked it in the Top 100 Modern Courses, Top 20 Resort Courses in the U.S. and No. 4-ranked Public Course in California. Golf Digest ranked Barona Creek in the Top 5 Casino Courses in the U.S., and Travel & Leisure Magazine ranked it in the Top 100 Public Courses in the U.S. Sports Illustrated said Barona Creek is “very well designed … a must play.” It received the first Audubon International Signature Sanctuary Certification in Southern California. All involved are confident that Barona Creek’s luster is now more grand than ever following the renovations.

Photo by Aidan Bradley

Photo by Aidan Bradley

“We couldn’t be happier with the work of Todd Eckenrode and his design team,” said Barona Creek Golf Club Director of Golf Don King. “Since the reopening in June, we have received all positive accolades from golfers playing the course.”

Construction has been conducted by Earth Sculptures Golf Course Renovation & Construction, which has worked with Eckenrode on other renovation projects. Barona Creek’s Course Superintendent Sandy Clark, CGCS, and Assistant Superintendent Dennis Orsborne have been intimately involved with the project.

“As we’ve expressed to the Barona Tribal leaders and Barona Creek management team, we don’t take this project lightly and are extremely excited as the improvements come to fruition,” Eckenrode said. “Soon we will be starting construction drawings on phase two, the front nine, and we are confident the golfer’s experience will be enhanced even more with the completion.”

Phase two is slated to commence in January 2020.

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