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Just down the road is Horseshoe Bay... and three great Robert Trent Jones courses -- Ram Rock, Apple Rock, and a less challenging Slick Rock. I also recommend the Fazio at Barton Creek.
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This is a list compiled by Avid Golfer from 2006
Austin Area Best Overall - Wolfdancer Golf Club (actually in Bastrop)

Avery Ranch

Roy Kizer--played it countless times great value

Falconhead

Delaware Springs

ShadowGlen

Teravista

Jimmy Clay --same location as roy kizer

ColoVista--actually in Bastrop (20 miles east of Austin)--best course for the price

Lions Municipal---overrated---I would suggest Morris Williams as being superior to Lions

Forest Creek

ColoVista

Crystal Falls---very affordable and very challenging course in Leander

Star Ranch

IMO, all the courses in Bastrop are great. Best combo of price and quality in Texas
--if you have the time stop by Tamale House #2 on Airport Blvd for a pre or post round meal. If you are hungry, get the juevos rancheros. If not, get two bacon, potato, egg and cheese breakfast tacos.
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I'm reasonably certain that you need to stay at Horseshoe Bay or Barton Creek if you want to play there.

With that said, these are the courses you want to take a look at:
Avery Ranch (quality course for the money)
Shadow Glen (most underrated course in Austin, and the one I would suggest you play)
Wolfdancer (pricey track down in Bastrop, but a lot of fun to play)
Crystal Falls (cheap, great course)

The munis are good, but that might not be your thing.

Also, ColoVista closed down a while back (fyi).
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I agree that Horseshoe bay is where you need to stay. We have an unlimited golf package starting at $200 per person. This is a great value because you get quite a bit on top of the golf. As an employee who plays every week here in Horseshoe bay, I have to say there is no more scenic course in texas than Applerock. Here is a link to our list golf packages:

http://www.hsbresort.com/leisureacti...golf/packages/

Let me know if you have any questions about the area, I live here.
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you are right just checked their website. Colovista has closed, what a shame.

definitely check out the other courses in Bastrop/Manor
http://www.pineforestgolfclub.com/
http://www.lostpinesgolfclub.com/
http://www.shadowglengolf.com/
http://www.wolfdancergolfclub.com/content/view/46/141/

They have horse racing at Manor Downs
http://www.manordowns.com/index.html

so many things to do in Austin
6th street. Continental Club
http://www.co.travis.tx.us/tnr/parks/tom_hughes.asp
Campbell's hole
http://www.austinchronicle.com/gyrob...6&Poll;=Critics
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Don't forget Hancock golf course. It's $12 bucks for 9 holes, in the middle of the city, has a lot of history (Ben Crenshaw, etc.), zero crowds, extremely easy (Course rating is 65.2), very short (~5500 yards from the tips). The greens are hit or miss, and you often score a bad lie in the fairway, as the greenskeeping isn't exactly top-notch. But it's next to a Freebird's Burritos and only takes a little over an hour to play. Cram it in, in the middle of a trip downtown.
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Don't forget Hancock golf course. It's $12 bucks for 9 holes, in the middle of the city, has a lot of history (Ben Crenshaw, etc.), zero crowds, extremely easy (Course rating is 65.2), very short (~5500 yards from the tips). The greens are hit or miss, and you often score a bad lie in the fairway, as the greenskeeping isn't exactly top-notch. But it's next to a Freebird's Burritos and only takes a little over an hour to play. Cram it in, in the middle of a trip downtown.

I remember back when I was going to school at UT (BSME '06), me and a couple friends went out there to play. On whatever hole it is that lines Red River, he hit the covering for the bus stop bench and scared the absolute crap out of the person sitting there. Needless to say he didn't go pick up his ball, and I'm not even sure if the perosn sitting there realized the noise was from a golf ball. Then we get to the next hole, he tees up his ball, and we start to hear a faint rumble that's growing in intensity. All of a sudden out of nowhere an F/A-18 is flying a couple hundred feet off the ground directly above us. It was close enough that we could see the guy in the cockpit. Scared the crap out of us!!! Later we found out if was practicing the flyover for the Texas-Ohio State game the following day.
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...On whatever hole it is that lines Red River, he hit the covering for the bus stop bench and scared the absolute crap out of the person sitting there...

That's #7. It's about 280 to drive the green, probably 285 to hit the bus stop. Perfectly flat. That's gotta be the easiest hole on the course. The street freaks people out, though, since most people will slice it over there. I usually play 3-wood, Lob wedge and try to get in tight to make birdie the old-fashioned way.

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This is a list compiled by Avid Golfer from 2006

Completely agree.

barton creek is great. roy kizer and jimmy clay are both good courses and are where they play the state high school tournaments at.

They play the earlier rounds at Morris Williams though. You guys should really play Morris Williams when they get it ready for UIL. It's seriously nice. I had so many people I hit with say how they've never seen the course in such great shape. I'm wondering how it looked back when the UT teams used to play there.

Don't forget Hancock golf course. It's $12 bucks for 9 holes, in the middle of the city, has a lot of history (Ben Crenshaw, etc.), zero crowds, extremely easy (Course rating is 65.2), very short (~5500 yards from the tips). The greens are hit or miss, and you often score a bad lie in the fairway, as the greenskeeping isn't exactly top-notch. But it's next to a Freebird's Burritos and only takes a little over an hour to play. Cram it in, in the middle of a trip downtown.

Hancock is such an odd course. Considering the central location, the history, and just how different it is... I'd definitely recommend it. I'd compare it to golfing through a 'museum'. It's just so different than all the other courses I've been on. I tell people it's like a cross between pitch & putt and a real golf course. Supposed to be the oldest course in Texas or something like that and it's only 9 holes now. I really wonder what the other 9 holes looked like (for those that don't know, the Hancock Center took over half the course.)

That's #7. It's about 280 to drive the green, probably 285 to hit the bus stop. Perfectly flat. That's gotta be the easiest hole on the course. The street freaks people out, though, since most people will slice it over there. I usually play 3-wood, Lob wedge and try to get in tight to make birdie the old-fashioned way.

That's the tricky thing about Hancock... the two easiest holes... #7 and the par 3 #4 are right next to roads and sidewalks. And theres definitely enough traffic on the #7 hole to screw with your head. Especially for me since chances I know someone around the area or not bad.

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  • 2 years later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Went to law school in Austin, so let's just say I had a lot of time to get to know the courses in the area.

Best golf area in Austin is west.  Falconhead (PGA Tour Signature Course) and Flintrock Falls (one of several Nicklaus designs in the area) are two of the best in Austin, definitely.  Wolfdancer is a great course and also worth a play, but the rest of the courses in Bastrop are not worth the drive.  (Someone mentioned ColoVista--was worth a play when it was in good shape, but closed down a few years ago.)

If I were traveling to Austin to vacation at the lake and play golf....

I'd stay out west in the Lake Travis area.  I'd play Falconhead, Flintrock Falls, and make a drive out to Bastrop for Wolfdancer one day.  I'd also cruise up north side of Lake Travis and check out either Lago Vista or Highland Lakes (very fun courses, on the cheaper and easier side, but with lots of fun shots).  Avery Ranch is also a very typical hill country course, winding through the live oaks and rolling hills.

The Barton Creek courses are good, but they're pricey and crowded, and frankly everyone who comes to Austin has heard of them and tries to play there.  If you are a ClubCorp member and can get on the University of Texas club then definitely do it--you won't be disappointed in that track.

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Awards, Achievements, and Accolades

A post asked about the venerable old Morris Williams golf course in Austin: He said, "I'm wondering how it looked back when the UT teams used to play there?".

Well, I played there almost everyday when in grad school and it was a great track.  If you planned your schedule and was willing to study late into the night, you could play most afternoons.  As UT's home course, it was kept pristine.  Later the team moved to Jimmy Clay and Morris Williams fell into a bit of disrepair.  I am glad to hear it is coming back.  It was fun to go hit balls and play with Crenshaw, Kite, Stewart, Massengale, etc.  One astonishing memory is of Rik Massengale starting his round birdie, eagle, ace on the first three holes.  I think I would have walked in for the day.

Of course, the old Austin CC was where one would find Harvey Penick but he would sometimes show up at MW. Morris Williams would host the Aquafest Tournament and it was almost the equal to the Texas Amatuer.  As for Hancock Hills, it was a nine hole neighborhood course, almost an expanded par three type track.  I lived a few blocks from it and would go over in the evening for chipping practice because there was usually no one on it.

I will never forget Morris Williams because it was a poor student's dream.  It was not too crowded because it was a bit more difficult than most courses at that time. You could buy a UT student season pass for what one round of golf costs today.  You took your bowling bag full of balls to the driving range and handed a young kid 50 cents and he would take the bag and go out on the range so you could hit balls to him.  I remember we all envied Kite's accuracy because his young caddy/ball retriever could sit down against the hill and Kite would hit full shots that bounced once and the kid could catch them and put them in the bag without often getting up.  10 fades, then 10 draws.  Then back up ten yards and repeat.  He did that because he idolized Ben Hogan and Hogan once said that was something one should do when practicing.  Morris Williams was magical back in those days. The old airport was adjunct to the course, with landing markers actually alonside one hole (number 11.).  I can remember thinking a golf shot could come pretty close to hitting a plane if timed correctly.  Since it was the UT golf team's home, there were lots of greats from other schools that would play in matches there so one got to see many golfers who later became pretty famous on tour.  One could likely write a book about all the rounds and activities that went on at old Morris Williams.

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