Mesa Linda is the shorter of the two courses here (Los Lagos being the other). Some people might look down on the overall short yardage of this course and the six par-3 holes, but it’s one of the most fun layouts around. There are lots of risk/reward options and scoring opportunities. The only major challenge here is the greens. They are relatively small with lots of undulation, and you can almost always expect 3-4 pin placements that make you scratch your head. There were some downright evil ones today on side slopes and edges of tiers! So much fun out there and a good course for novice golfers.
They have made a few alterations since my last visit here. I noticed a number of trees missing (including a few that had a definite impact on the angles of some holes) and they cut down the “bunker from hell” that used to guard the super-short 15th hole. That takes a little bite out of this very fun hole, but it’s still big and scary enough to keep this a great risk/reward shot off the tee and a do-or-die pitch on the your approach.
The course was in great shape—probably the greenest I’ve ever seen it. The fairways and rough were green and lush. The fairways had lots of fluffy lies and the rough was more of a mixed bag depending on your lie and the type of grass you ended up in. When the ball sits up, it’s nice to hit from, but if it’s sitting down in the thick/grabby stuff it can be a bitch to hit from. The tee boxes were mostly level and very lush, but almost a bit too shaggy if you ask me. By the time you get your tee firmly into the ground, the grass comes up higher than I would personally prefer. The greens were in excellent shape. Firm and fast. They did get a bit bumpy toward the end of the round, but that’s to be expected that late in the evening. I wasn’t in any greenside bunkers, but I was in a couple of fairway bunkers. They were very thin and crunchy, which isn’t so bad on a fairway bunker if you want to pick it clean. But if the greenside bunkers were like that it would suck (especially because some of the greenside bunkers here are deep and nasty).
I always have a good time on Mesa Linda and this visit was no exception. Hopefully it will not be as long a gap between now and my next visit, and I hope to get out and play Los Lagos soon, as well.
Some pictures from Costa Mesa Country Club (Mesa Linda):