Pros: Trees, Location in West LA
Cons: Incredibly Slow, Spotty Conditions
Another reviewer highlighted the history of the course. One of the classic designs in Los Angeles, Rancho Park will appeal to those who like tree-lined mature layouts with some hills. It's location in West LA means it is about the only decent public course in the middle several million people.
Which is, of course, its biggest downside. Rancho is the slowest, most crowded course I've ever played. If you get out at dawn then you have a chance of getting around in a decent time, but anytime after 8am or so and you're looking at a long day. Friends and I once took a weekday off work to play there with the hopes that it would be faster, but when we got to the 4th hole and found we were the 4th foursome waiting on the tee we knew it was going to be a miserable day - that day was a 6 1/2 hour round! It has gotten slightly better, but 6+ hour rounds are still the norm on weekends.
Conditions are spotty. Some parts of the course seem well maintained and you'll find decent greens, and then other parts look like they're bearing the brunt of the LA economic woes. Greens tend to be a little on the slow side but they do roll more smoothly than one would think for a course that gets this much play.
Unfortunately, public golf options in west LA are pretty limited so there aren't a lot of better choices, but often one could drive out north to Simi Valley area or Orange County and play nicer courses, probably in about the same time as a round at Rancho even counting drive time.