Nevada Golf’s Best-Kept Secrets

Jackpot, Elko & Wendover have plenty to offer

Published in the July 2015 Issue Published online: Jul 24, 2015 Courses, Stories

Jackpot Golf Club in Jackpot (775-755-2260)

Nearly straddling the border between southern Idaho and northern Nevada, this 18-hole public course is a Robert Muir Graves design, which has matured nicely in its 40-year history. Above all this is a fun course and challenging in its unique way.

Blind shots and roily fairways are not uncommon, but a high score on your first round there usually is. Cactus Petes, a AAA Four-Diamond resort offers not only a wide array of gaming, but also boasts an incredible selection of restaurants, and features one of the state's few remaining dinner showrooms. An Olympic-sized swimming pool and lighted tennis courts are also available.

 

Ruby View Golf Course in Elko (775-777-7277)

This standout facility just a few miles outside of Elko sports 18 championship holes at very reasonable rates.

The course offers multiple teeing areas (gold, blue, white, and red) for each of the 18 holes. Ruby View’s gold, blue and white tees play as a Par 71 course and the red tees play as a par 72 course. The blue tee USGA course rating is 68.5, a slope rating of 115 and playing 6631 yards. The red tee USGA course rating is 67.5, a slope rating of 117 and playing 5332 yards.

Landing areas on this track are wide and forgiving, but there is also an ample supply of white stakes to tighten things up a bit. The greens are large and undulating—fair, but testy.

Prior to 1968, the Ruby View Golf Course in Elko was located in the area currently occupied by Great Basin College, Interstate 80, Committee Against Domestic Violence Office/Harbor House, and the vacant properties north of I-80 between College Parkway and Skyline Drive. (The old clubhouse is located at the intersection of Skyline Drive and Ruby Vista Drive.) Due to the construction of Interstate 80 and the start of Great Basin College buildings, a new 9-hole course was opened for play in 1968 at the now existing Ruby View Golf Course site. In May of 1972 an additional 9-holes opened for play. The course consists of approximately 160 original acres of land with an additional 100 acres being acquired for future expansion.

 

Spring Creek Golf Course outside of Elko (775-753-6331)

Situated about 10 miles from the center of Elko in the town of Spring Creek—and slightly younger than its neighboring course at Ruby View—Spring Creek 35-year-old lush track with all the fixing of a great golf course. It sprawls over seven majestic miles of beautifully manicured fairways. Spectacular views of the Majestic Ruby Mountains make playing this 18-hole, par-72 layout an experience you’ll never forget. Course amenities include a driving range, practice putting green and cart rental, both riding and hand carts.

The course is capable of handling large and small tournaments, and its fully stocked pro shop offers club repair, personal club fitting, rental clubs and golf lessons.

The course plays 6,302 yards from the back. The course rating is 70.6 and it has a slope rating of 121.

 

Toana Vista Golf Course in Wendover (800 852-4330)

Toana Vista is a bona fide oasis of championship golf just two hours west of Salt Lake City. Among a number of cosmetic and functional development Toana Vista has undergone construction of a new clubhouse and snack bar facility, providing a first-class look to what is already heralded as a first-class golf facility. 

Among the sagebrush-strewn landscape, Toana Vista's serpentine fairways demand a mixed bag of shotmaking. It’s not always easy, but it is a uniformly fair test of golf. The greens are mounded and undulating, and off to either side you’ll find several strategically placed water hazards. One perennial tip we get from the locals here is to keep the ball on the grass, because even if you are not out of play, playing off the hard soil and rock will eat up your score as well as your golf clubs. (If you do wind up out in the scrub, also be wary of possible entanglements with resident rattlesnakes.)

There are several memorable holes on this track, but one of our favorites is No. 12. It’s a great par 5 and a classic offering of risk-reward. Drive it well, you can go for it in two. Don’t, and you’ll be kissing the railroad ties that flank a long and treacherous water hazard.

This course has a great view in just about every direction, so don’t forget to pack a camera!