I previously wrote about my day trip to Buckeye, Arizona, where I played both of the courses at Verrado Golf Club. I finished that 36 with plenty of daylight to spare. It should come as no surprise that I played another round afterward.
Nearby Sundance Golf Club was the very logical choice. I had scouted it earlier and knew the late afternoon rates on Thursday were favorable (not to mention the tee sheet was wide open). Plus, it was the closest course to Verrado. It was an easy decision to drive over there and try and squeeze in one more round.
The price was $19 (plus tax) for 18 holes with a cart. I headed to the first tee right away (about 3:20) and sprinted around the front nine in about 45 minutes. I had it completely to myself. However, as often happens, things changed when I made the turn. I saw a twosome ahead and then caught up to them on the next tee, while they were waiting for the groups ahead. All of a sudden, it was a log jam and there was nowhere I could go. I knew I’d still finish well before dark, so I just stuck it out. In the end, I still finished all 18 in under three hours.
I’ve always been curious about Sundance. It’s one of the handful of courses on the far western side of the valley and it sits right along the edge of the I-10 freeway. In a way, it has always taunted me when I drove past, so it was satisfying just to check it off my list.
In most respects, Sundance was exactly what I expected—a fairly flat and basic desert course running through the homes. It won’t excite you too much, but it actually had plenty of subtle character. There is some undulation throughout the fairways and the way some of the natural desert areas come into play is interesting. The greens had some undulation, as well. Greg Nash designed the course and I’d say he did alright with a limited palette. It’s kind of an underhanded compliment, I know. The best way I can put it is that Sundance is exactly what you expect it to be, yet it’s also a little better than expected. It was just enough to make me walk away with a somewhat positive impression overall.
The signature hole here is the par-3 6th hole, which plays over water. I also liked the next hole. The short par-4 7th requires the tee shot over the same large hazard and then doglegs right around a native area. It was easily the most interesting hole here from tee to green, plus I undoubtedly liked it because it suits my fade!
The course was in decent condition, playing better than it looked. The grass was browning out and getting ready for transition soon. However, the course played pretty well overall. The tee boxes were good. I generally had good fairway lies with some thin spots here and there. The rough was a little spottier, but still pretty decent. I wasn’t in any bunkers, so no comments there. The greens didn’t look pretty (lots of brown spots). However, they played nicest of any greens on the day. They were firm, yet plenty receptive on approaches while rolling fast and smooth on putts.
In a region with so much golf, Sundance is far from a must-play. At the same time, it is a great value and a convenient option in a part of the valley without many courses to choose from. Verrado will give you a more interesting overall golf experience, but Sundance will satisfy you enough at the right price.
Some pictures from Sundance Golf Club (4/20/17):