Introduction to Yuma
In this blog post we’re going to explore the golf courses in Yuma, Arizona. Known as the World’s Sunniest City, it is located in the bottom corner of Arizona, right on the state border with California and Mexico.
Yuma has a fascinating history, having been founded in 1850. Its location is no coincidence. It was the safest point in the whole state to cross the wild Colorado River. In developing a steamboat service, this became the primary crossing point for travelers wanting to reach California and join the gold rush.
Most of the outdoor activities in Yuma revolve around the Colorado River. This includes kayaking, canoeing, boating and so much more.
The vast Sonoran Desert surrounds the city. With its great dunes, outdoor enthusiasts revel in off-roading, biking and the likes.
In the city are ample entertainment options and great places to eat. For example, Lutes Casino is one of the most popular places to drink and eat the night away.
But let’s get into exploring the golf courses in Yuma.
The best public golf courses in Yuma, Arizona
Mesa Del Sol Golf Course
First up on our list of the best public golf courses in Yuma, Arizona, is Mesa Del Sol Golf Club.
The club is located a fifteen minute drive to the east of the city, towards Fortuna Foothills. You simply head along Interstate 8 and the club is just off the freeway. The journey couldn’t be easier.
The course opened in 1978 and was designed by the great Arnold Palmer. As was often the case, he was supported in the project by Ed Seay. Together they’ve designed a fine championship course which offers four sets of tees. This extends the course from 5,300 to 6,700 yards.
The routing works its way through a large residential development, with housing lining most holes. Fortunately this is offset by the views across to the Gila Mountains.
For a desert-style layout, the course has a surprising amount of water in play. At least half the holes have water hazards in some shape or form. There is even the odd par-3 where there is nothing but water from tee to green.
Generally the fairways are wide and forgiving with enough of a buffer off the sides to allow more room for error. The club has invested quite a lot in recent years to re-turf all the greens, tee boxes and fairways.
Mesa Del Sol Golf Club is definitely one of the best golf courses in Yuma. With this ongoing investment, expect it to continue improving year-on-year.
Desert Hills Golf Course
Next up we move to Desert Hills Golf Course which is less than a ten minute drive from downtown.
Like Yuma Golf & Country Club, it is to the south of the city and just north of the airport. Yuma is not a huge city and despite being ten minutes drive from the center, Desert Hills is on the city limits.
This is a great plot for a golf course. Scenic views and plenty of natural movement in the land. These undulations are just one of a number of reasons to come and play golf at Desert Hills.
The course opened for play in 1973 and was designed to serve the local community. This was to be as good a municipal golf course as they could make it. Having been voted as Yuma’s best golf course for 19 out of 20 years, it’s obviously doing something right.
From the back tees, the course measures 6,800 yards. Feel free to pull out the big dog, with wide accommodating fairways offering plenty of respite. Likewise, the greens are large but feature enough movement to keep things interesting.
Over the years the course has hosted a number of high profile tournaments including the Sunbelt Senior Tour and various Nike Tours. The likes of John Daly, Tom Lehman and Chris DiMarco have all graced the fairways here.
Great value and a great option for golf close to Yuma’s city center.
Cocopah Bend RV & Golf Resort
If you love the RV lifestyle, then the Cocopah Bend RV & Golf Resort is the one for you. The resort is 300 acres of extra large rigs, a golf course, activities including a pool, card room etc, and a restaurant.
This hugely popular resort also has a special pet friendly section with its own pet exercise area.
Cocopah Bend is located in an isolated spot to the west of Yuma, alongside the Colorado River. But it couldn’t be easier to get into town, being just a fifteen minute drive away.
The onsite course is not championship golf. But it is fun, unpretentious and entertaining stuff. As to be expected, nearly every hole runs alongside lines of RVs. So try not to spray it too much off the tee, or you might not be the most popular person in the 19th hole.
From the back tees, the layout measures 5,731 yards, so not the longest. But the course is more often than not in great condition. There is water which comes into play on three holes which keeps things interesting.
To finish off the round, the 17th and 18th holes run directly alongside the Colorado River. What a way to finish.
Las Barrancas Golf Course
Last on the list of golf courses in Yuma is Las Barrancas Golf Course. We shoot all the way over to the Fortuna Foothills area of Yuma, to the east of the city. You couldn’t be closer to the Gila Mountains if you tried.
The layout at Las Barrancas is top class and there is a nice variety in the design. The front nine is generally quite flat, with some challenging holes. Whilst the back nine features plenty of elevation changes with a number of forced carries.
From the tips, the course measures just shy of 6,900 yards. But boy, playing off the tips and scoring well would be some feat. You really need to be hitting the fairway if you want to score well.
Unlike many of the other Yuma golf courses, Las Barrancas Golf Course is routed through a wild desert landscape. There is barely any housing encroaching onto the playing areas, meaning you get to enjoy the scenic views instead. With such a lack of residential zoning, you’ll encounter plenty of wildlife…ideally when you’re not searching for your ball!
The course opened in 2005 and has continued to grow in popularity since then. If you’re willing to play during the middle of the day, you’ll find tee times starting from 50 bucks, which is great value.
The best private golf course in Yuma, Arizona
Yuma Golf & Country Club
Yuma Golf & Country Club is the only private golf facility in Yuma and has been since its inception in 1950.
This fine club has the perfect location, near enough to the heart of the city albeit in a tranquil neighborhood. It is just north of the international airport and a five minute drive to downtown.
The club was actually built by the Colorado River Improvement Company, leasing the land to the original 246 charter members. Just a year later, the clubhouse and swimming pool were added.
At this time it was just a 9-hole layout. But some eight years later, the second nine-holes were added. Ever since then, the club has remained a family focused destination slowly adding more amenities and improving those that already exist.
The site is nearly a perfect square, with approximately 120 acres of nothing but greenery and fairways. It is like a little oasis in central Yuma.
The land is relatively flat so this is an easily walkable course. From the tee, what you see is what you get. Although with most holes tree-lined, it does require a fairly accurate game off the tee.
Greens and tee boxes and in superb condition, which isn’t a huge surprise considering the private nature of the club. There are a handful of water hazards which keep things interesting, particularly on two of the par-3s the 8th and 12th holes. Whilst the 10th has a cheeky stream running in front of the green to lap up any short approach shots.