My Top 50 Golf Courses

My Top 50 Golf Courses


Ranking golf courses is always tough. Many people carry different opinions in what a good golf course is and why they think so, but, ranking courses is part of the fun, and the main reason of ranking golf courses is to spark discussion and debate among groups.

Here’s how I put together my ranking:

Playability /20

A fairly basic category, this is how accessible a golf course is to everyone. Can a 36 handicap play and have the same fun as a 0 handicap? Is there options with minimal forced carries for the average player?

Shot Value /20

Shot value may be controversial, especially with such a high weighting, but it’s fairly important to a golf course. However, unlike most people (who think shot value is difficulty), shot value is how it challenges people. For example, on a modern golf course, there’s a 80 yard wide fairway, but with the green complex and bunkering the player has to hit to the right side to have a good angle into the green. This doesn’t necessarily add difficulty, because the high handicapper can still get around without losing a golf ball, but it does challenge the player (thus a high “shot value”) while being fair.

Fun /20

Without taking score, conditions, weather, who we played with or any other external factors, how much fun did we/would we have on that certain golf course?

Memorability /20

Is it a course we remember/will remember, or do we need to relook at photos and the scorecard/yardage book? This isn’t about vistas or elevated tee boxes, but will we look back in a year and think “I loved that course because of ___.”

Architectural Values /20

How much thought did the architect put into each hole? Is there 18 quality holes, or is there a few sloppy ones? Is the routing walkable (if applicable*) that utilizes the land well, or is most of the holes on boring land? Is there variety and creative in routing/design/flow?

*While some golf courses have the ability to be walked, some architects don’t have the ability to craft a golf course that’s walkable on certain properties. It’d be unfair to rank those differently just because the architect was given a property that couldn’t be walkable in the first place.

Each golf course with a red title will have a review for you to read if you’re interested in learning more. Total number of courses ranked: 186. The top 50 are shown, while courses 51-100 can be viewed here.

Don’t see your favorite course? Let me know in the comments below!


50 (34). Tower Ranch Golf and Country Club

68.500 points

Kelowna, British Columbia

7212 yards, 73.3/127

-Thomas McBroom (2008)

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49 (33). Iron Horse Golf Club

68.555 points

Whitefish, Montana

7028 yards, 72.9/137

-Tom Fazio (2000)

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48 (32). Kelowna Golf and Country Club

68.700 points

Kelowna, British Columbia

6344 yards, 70.6/131

-A.V. Macan (1923)

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47 (31). Talking Stick Resort (O’odham)

68.750

Scottsdale, Arizona

7133 yards, 72.7/125

-Bill Coore & Ben Crenshaw (1998)

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46 (30). Cascata

69.580 points

Boulder City, Nevada

7137 yards, 74.6/143

-Rees Jones (2000)

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45 (28). Sahalee Country Club (North/South)

69.000 points

Sammamish, Washington

7003 yards, 74.6/139

-Kieth Evans & Ted Robinson Sr. (1969)

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44 (27). Mirabel Club

69.250 points

Scottsdale, Arizona

7147 yards, 72.8/136

-Tom Fazio (2001)

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43 (NEW). Shaughnessy Golf & Country Club

70.000 points

Vancouver, British Columbia

7045 yards, 74.7/135

-AV Macan (1961)

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42 (26). Sand Hollow Resort (Championship)

71.000 points

Hurricane, Utah

7315 yards, 73.7/131

-John Fought (2008)

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41 (NEW). Eagle’s Nest Golf Club

71.050 points

Maple, Ontario

7476 yards, 76.3/143

-Doug Carrick (2004)

40 (38). Tobiano Golf Course

71.150 points

Kamloops, British Columbia

7367 yards, 75.3/134

-Thomas McBroom (2007)

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39 (25). Wolf Creek Golf Resort (Links)

71.250 points

Ponoka, Alberta

7155 yards, 73.6/125

-Rod Whitman (2012)

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38 (24). Quarry Ranch, The

71.500

La Quinta, California 

1653 yards, not rated

-Tom Fazio (2004)

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37 (23). Royal Mayfair Golf Club

71.700 points

Edmonton, Alberta

6740 yards, 72.7/133

-Stanley Thompson (1927)

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36 (NEW). Bigwin Island Golf Club

71.725 points

Baysville, Ontario

7166 yards, 74.4/136

-Doug Carrick (2001)

35 (22). Rawls at Texas Tech, The

71.750 points

Lubbock, Texas

7349 yards, 75.3/139

-Tom Doak (2003)

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34 (21). Greywolf Golf Course

74.500 points

Panorama, British Columbia

7140 yards, 74.2/144

-Doug Carrick (1999)

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33 (20). Eugene Country Club

74.750 points

Eugene, Oregon

6854 yards, 74.2/136

-Robert Trent Jones Sr. (1927)

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32 (17). Chambers Bay Golf Course

74.800 points

University Place, Washington

7165 yards, 75.6/139

-Robert Trent Jones II (2007)

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31 (NEW). Hamilton Golf & Country Club (West/South)

74.825 yards

Ancaster, Ontario

6928 yards, 74.1/136

-H.S. Colt (1915)

30 (18). Predator Ridge Golf Resort (Ridge)

74.850 points

Vernon, British Columbia

7128 yards, 73.8/137

-Doug Carrick (2009)

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29 (NEW). The National Golf Club of Canada

74.875 points

Woodbridge, Ontario

7235 yards, 76.3/152

-George & Tom Fazio (1972)

28 (NEW). Summit Golf Club

74.900

Richmond Hill, Ontario

6865 yards, 70.6/131

-Stanley Thompson (1912)

27 (NEW). Mickelson National Golf Club [Open May 2020]

74.950 points

Springbank, Alberta

7621 yards, not rated

-Phil Mickelson (2020)

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26 (19). Apache Stronghold Golf Course

75.000 points

Globe, Arizona

7519 yards, 74.6/145

-Tom Doak (1999)

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25 (15). World Woods Golf Club (Pine Barrens)

78.550 points

Brooksville, Florida

7237 yards, 75.3/133

-Tom Fazio (1993)

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24 (NEW). Blue Mound Golf & Country Club

78.600 points

Wauwatosa, Wisconsin

6667 yards, 72.1/131

-Seth Raynor (1926)

23 (14). Aldarra Golf Club

78.750 points

Sammamish, Washington

6885 yards, 74.0/147

-Tom Fazio (1993)

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22 (13). We-Ko-Pa Golf Club (Saguaro)

78.775 points

Fountain Hills, Arizona

6966 yards, 72.0/137

-Bill Coore & Ben Crenshaw (2006)

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21 (12). Desert Forest Golf Club

79.000 points

Carefree, Arizona

7203 yards, 75.5/149

-Robert Lawrence (1962)

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20 (10). Quarry at La Quinta, The

79.250 points

La Quinta, California

7038 yards, 73.4/134

-Tom Fazio (1994)

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19 (9). Streamsong Resort (Red)

79.270 points

Bowling Green, Florida

7148 yards, 74.2/130

-Bill Coore & Ben Crenshaw (2012)

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18 (NEW). Westmount Golf & Country Club

79.275 points

Kitchener, Ontario

6943 yards, 72.4/133

-Stanley Thompson (1931)

17 (16). Blackhawk Golf Club

79.300 points

Devon, Alberta

6835 yards, 73.0/138

-Rod Whitman (2003)

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16 (NEW). Calgary Golf & Country Club

79.500 points

Calgary, Alberta

6506 yards, 71.0/131

-Willie Park Jr. (1922)

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15 (11). Gamble Sands Golf Course and Lodge (Sands)

79.750 points

Brewster, Washington

7169 yards, 74.2/128

-David McLay Kidd (2014)

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14 (NEW). Sutton Bay (Championship)

80.450 points

Agar, South Dakota

7226 yards, 74.9/147

-Graham Marsh (2012)

13 (8). Estancia Club, The

80.500 points

Scottsdale, Arizona

7314 yards, 74.0/147

-Tom Fazio (1995)

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12 (6). Bandon Trails

81.500 points

Bandon, Oregon

6788 yards, 73.6/130

-Bill Coore & Ben Crenshaw (2005)

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11 (NEW). Öviinbyrd

82.000 points

Foots Bay, Ontario

7157 yards, 75.6/146

-Thomas McBroom (2005)

10 (NEW). The Toronto Golf Club (Colt)

84.850 points

Mississauga, Ontario

6836 yards, 73.7/141

-H.S. Colt (1912)

9 (5). Fairmont Banff Springs Golf Club, The (Stanley Thompson 18)

85.000 points

Banff, Alberta

6938 yards, 72.9/135

-Stanley Thompson (1927)

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8 (NEW). Inverness Club

85.100 points

Toledo, Ohio

7730 yards, 78.4/151

-Donald Ross (1916)

7 (-). Sagebrush Golf & Sporting Club

85.125 points

Merritt, British Columbia

7396 yards, 75.7/142

-Rod Whitman (2009)

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6 (4). Pasatiempo Golf Club

85.250 points

Santa Cruz, California 

6500 yards, 72.4/141

-Allister Mackenzie (1929)

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5 (NEW). St. George’s Golf & Country Club

85.425 points

Etobicoke, Ontario

7014 yards, 74.4/136

-Stanley Thompson (1929)

4 (3). Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge Golf Course, The

85.450 points

Jasper, Alberta

6663 yards, 71.6/130

-Stanley Thompson (1929)

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3 (1). Pacific Dunes

85.500 points

Bandon, Oregon

6633 yards, 73.0/142

-Tom Doak (2001)

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2 (NEW). Capilano Golf & Country Club

85.750 points

West Vancouver, British Columbia

6706 yards, 73.0/133

-Stanley Thompson (1937)

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1 (2). Rock Creek Cattle Company

87.000 points

Deer Lodge, Montana

7466 yards, 74.9/137

-Tom Doak (2008)

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