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Salt Creek Golf Course (Formerly The Auld Course)

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Ye Auld Course At The Firth Of Otay by Martin Olivera

Well, not really. No such a thing as the "Firth of Otay". The only water you will find at the foothills of Mount Miguel is in the form three lakes and drainage channels in and around the wetlands of a protected wildlife reserve. But when you play this Auld Course (Salt Creek) in east Chula Vista you WILL get that Scottish feeling of being on the links. It does bring a little piece of Scotland to Southern California, even if the sea water is somewhat far away and there is not one wind-swept sheep in sight. This John Cook and Cary Bickler collaboration offers golf players a natural setting like no other in the area. Only 100 of the 280 acres of land here are being maintained for golf. The rest is part of the overall reserve surrounding the golf course. In fact, the most attractive feature of this fine layout is that there are no houses, no roads, and no trees on or near the golf course. If you look at the pictures you will get the picture. This is pure and simple fun and natural golf.

Five sets of tees to cater all abilities. At almost 6900 yards from the back -- appropriately named "Cook" -- tees, this par 72 track is an invitation to enjoyable golf. And you don't have to be an experienced golfer to appreciate it. The occasional blind shot is there. Undulating Bermuda fairways bordered by fescue rough and scattered bunkering produce the consequent compromised uneven lie and the dreaded fairway bunker shot. But the intricacies and defenses are balanced out, superbly, by ample and fair natural Bent grass greens. And don't let the apparent long distance from the coast fool you. The sea breeze comes into play by mid-day, enhancing that Scottish feeling. "While I don't have one single favorite hole, I just love the 5th, 6th, 7th stretch" says Grant Wingate, the course Tournament Director. It's a par-4, par-5, par-3 corridor that demands thinking and accuracy. "The 7th from the back is 224 yards to an elevated green that slopes from front to back. It takes a great golf shot to hold this green", he adds. The finishing hole, a reachable 505 par-5 provides the thrill of an "anything can happen" finish. It will reward two accurate consecutive shots and give the player a chance for an eagle putt on the small green, but it will also punish errant shots on either side of the fairway, both off the tee and on the approach shot.

The highest point on the property is by the clubhouse. It is there where you can appreciate the expansive dimensions and panoramic scenery, as well as get a good view of the natural protected habitat. The generous practice facilities with a distant view of the Islas Coronados and the Pacific Ocean are exceptional. PGA TOUR professional Jason Gore -- who last season won on both the Nationwide and regular professional tours -- practiced and played here his way into golf stardom. Since its opening five years ago, this golf course has hosted several prominent professional, amateur and junior golf events, including Golden State Tour tournaments, and the San Diego Inner City Junior Golf Foundation. It will be the venue for the San Diego County Open in 2006. In addition, the Auld Course (Salt Creek) is the home of the Bonita Vista High School, University of San Diego (Men's) and San Diego State (Women's) golf teams.

One major change at the Auld Course (Salt Creek) has been in management. The locally renowned JC Resorts company -- the same golf course administration outfit that manages nine other golf courses in the county -- took over in 2001 and has provided the needed expertise and stability in organization and maintenance to bring this facility to first-rate levels. Through this new guiding hand, the Auld Course (Salt Creek)offers a variety of tournament packages for corporate or private groups of all sizes.

You don't have to wear a plaid kilt or know how play the pipes to savor the flavor of Scotland in this place. Just brrring yourrr gawf clubs, lad or lass, and become part of this natural environment, playing the game as it has always been meant to be played. Whether you are a golf purist or simply want to have fun playing the game, Salt Creek should definetly be on your list of a must-play courses in the San Diego golf destination.

For more information about Salt Creek (Formerly The Auld Course) visit, or call the Pro-Shop at 619-482-4666. For all your golf information and outing needs in the San Diego area, visit San Diego Golf Reservations at

Click to book tee times, corporate golf events or read more information about Salt Creek Golf Course or any of "The 20 Best Golf Courses" in San Diego."

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