You guessed it. This was another low-end course on my replay list. I wasn’t necessarily planning to play on Saturday, but was feeling bored in the morning and started looking for tee times. There weren’t many exciting deals at any of my replay list courses, so Dad Miller Golf Course in Anaheim seemed like the best option.
I found an 11:07 tee time on TeeOff.com for $33. For this course, I don’t really consider that a great deal. However, I was already aware of a $10 off promo code for April, so that helped make it more palatable. It ended up being $24.99 total with the booking fee and that was acceptable enough for a Saturday round with a cart here.
I expected the course to be busy on a Saturday, so I came in with low expectations. When I arrived, I could see a lot of players on the course, but there weren’t many people around the first tee. I checked in and the starter told me I could head right out to join a twosome about to tee off. That was cool and we teed off around 10:40. The first hole went along fine, but then we arrived at the second tee to find two groups still waiting to tee off. That’s when we realized we were in for a really long day.
The first six holes took two hours to complete. We could see a big gap several holes in front of us and identified the weak groups. It was clear they were all novice players and didn’t really follow much etiquette. Fortunately, the marshal finally came around and promised to make things better. It’s rare the marshal can make that big a difference, but he held his promise and the pace picked up a lot after that. It was still slow at times, but it was a noticeable difference the rest of the way. In the end, it was just under five hours to complete our round, which isn’t that bad considering we were on a six-hour pace at one point.
Still, because of the brutally slow start, it was hard to get into any rhythm and enjoy the round much. Dad Miller isn’t that great a course to begin with, so the slow pace wore me out early on and I played terribly.
Dad Miller is a relatively short course playing to a par of 71 and topping out at 5,892 yards from the blue tees. There are a handful of really short holes that kind of skew the total yardage, but most holes are pretty average in length. That said, it’s not a difficult course and a good score is easy to post if you keep your tee shots straight.
I will say the back nine (really just holes 11-15) is more interesting and challenging than the front. This is a pretty fun stretch on an otherwise basic course.
There are some awkward tee angles throughout this course. Trees are well-placed and doglegs come into play often. You typically don’t need to hit it far off the tee, but you do want to be straight. Unfortunately, the majority of players here are all over the place. Let’s just say Dad Miller doesn’t attract many low-handicappers, so you might want to bring a hard hat with you.
I mean seriously, I don’t think I’ve ever seen as much chaos as I did Saturday. Every time I would look out at a fairway, there would be at least five carts driving back and forth. People would then get out and hit in every different direction. There are a lot of back and forth holes here, so stray balls are everywhere and you never know which hole they are coming from. It’s pure insanity on a busy day.
The course was in mediocre shape, and I would guess probably about average here. The tee boxes were pretty chewed up. The fairways and rough offered a bit of everything, ranging from bare hard pan to sections that were too shaggy. It seems they’ve had some irrigation issues here, too, so there were a few fairways with big puddles (2, 3 and 18 come to mind specifically). The bunkers were fine. The greens still recovering from aeration on April 4, so they were very soft, somewhat slow and at times bumpy. They did seem to be healing well and should be pretty good within a couple weeks.
It’s probably been over 10 years since my only other visit to Dad Miller and it will probably be at least that before I consider returning. I remember playing well here last time and having somewhat positive memories of the course. This visit just didn’t fill me with any positive feelings, so I’ll leave this place to the hackers who don’t mind overpaying for a low-end muni course.
Some pictures from Dad Miller Golf Course (4/16/16):