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

Historic Mount Woodson Golf Club - by Martin Olivera

You just won The Masters, one of the four major golf tournaments, perhaps the most coveted title in the sport. What are you going to do next? Well, if you are Phil Mickelson, winner of the 2004 Masters and one of the best players in the world, you go play a round of golf at the Mount Woodson Golf Club in Ramona, California, a few miles from Phil's hometown, San Diego. Only eight days after his magnificent victory and while in the middle of a media appearance tour, the current # 4 player in the world rankings showed up at this fun golf course in San Diego for a relaxed day at the links with his brother Tim - another fine golfer on his own - and a couple of friends. And...there's a picture on the wall of the Mt. Woodson golf course Pro Shop to prove it! "We don't know what he shot," said Ray Bozek, staff member at Mount Woodson Golf Course. "He wouldn't give us his score card to frame, but I saw a lot of three's and two's on it," he added with a wink.

The San Diego landscape in which Mount Woodson golf club was built is part of the original 320 acre homestead of Dr. Marshall Clay Woodson. A surgeon in the Confederate Army during the Civil War, Dr. Woodson settled in the area in 1875. Mount Woodson golf club was named after him when he became a prominent local figure. Perhaps golf was not 0n his mind back then, but we now know it takes the carefulness and dexterity of a surgeon to go around this San Diego golf course if a player wants to score well.

This 6000 yard, par 70 layout is a target-style Lee Schmidt and Brian Curley designed golf course sculptured within a rugged natural setting of rocky hills and valleys. Steep elevation changes and tight landing areas demand pinpoint accuracy and more than make up for the apparent lack of yardage. A medium length to short par 4 may become a long par 4 when a player is forced to throttle down to a fairway metal, or even an iron, off the tee to avoid thickly vegetated ravines lining up or crossing fairways. The beauty of this type of design is that the risk-reward situations are present all over the place and they will test your patience and resistance to temptation and therefore your game. Shot making is the key to play this course. That's probably why a world-class and imaginative player like Mickelson enjoys playing Mt. Woodson golf course. However, despite being narrow and tight, Mount Woodson is fair in all aspects. The greens are well maintained and receptive and the bunkering is enough to keep you focused yet it's not overwhelming.

The panoramic views are spectacular and the personality of each hole is often captured by its given name. As you play the course you can associate the name of a hole with a distinctive feature of the golf course. You'll find yourself hitting off Ledges (# 3), landing on The Beach (# 5), standing at the Tree Tops (# 12), or weeding it out of The Forest (# 17). You'll enjoy the ride through the 450 foot meandering wooden bridge on your way to the 3rd tee. As it works its way above a deep ravine, you feel like Indiana Jones is somewhere nearby and will pop up at any moment!

Besides being a superb San Diego golf course, Mount Woodson is known for an architectural treasure - the Mt. Woodson Castle. Designed by John Vawter and Emmor Weaver and built in 1921, this 27 room, 12,000 square-foot mansion features handcrafted tile and wood floors, wood-beamed ceilings, stone fireplaces, hand-painted etchings and curved staircases. It combines English cottage and French castle influences with the flair of Netherlands's windmills, all inspired by Amy Strong who purchased the estate in 1909. This fantastic setting is perfect for pre or post golf tournament activities or for private receptions and banquets. The Castle's picturesque lawn area and rose gardens are ideal for intimate gatherings and weddings.

Other activities available within this gated Mt. Woodson golf community area are rock climbing and hiking. Equestrian trails meander through huge granite boulders, ancient towering oaks and the wild flowers along the base of Mount Woodson. Club amenities include a swimming pool, tennis courts and a short game practice facility.

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

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