In recent years, new golf courses have sprung up in non-traditional destinations. Consider Bandon Dunes in Oregon, which opened in 1999. It (and its sister courses, Pacific Dunes and Bandon Trails) turned an otherwise sleepy Oregon coastal town into a golfing mecca.
In our modern times, unless your last name is Trump, Kaiser (Bandon Dunes) or Kohler (Whistling Straits), chances are good that a new course with killer views will, eventually, sprout homes alongside its tightly mown fairways. After all, building golf courses ain’t cheap, and many new public access layouts are conceived with real estate in mind. Recently, however, that model has been changing.
The mountain West, which incorporates the rugged terrain of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado to the Sierra Nevadas of California, Utah and upward to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, is quite possibly the most diverse outdoor playground in the United States. Literally every kind of recreation is found here, ranging from winter skiing and white-water rafting to horseback riding, hiking, fishing and, of course, golf.
The mountain West—a rugged region that stretches from the Colorado Rockies to the Sierra Nevada of Northern California, Utah and into Idaho—is unquestionably the most diverse terrain in the country. You can do it all here when it comes to outdoor recreation: ski, hike, swim, water sports, fishing—you name it. Within the last decade, golf has surged in popularity, as many destinations have melded into hybrid resorts that serve as ski havens in the winter and golf hot spots in the summer.