SEASIDE, Calif. -- The Black Horse Course offers a slightly different feel and personality than the more celebrated Bayonet Course at Bayonet/Black Horse on the Monterey Peninsula. The 7,024-yard course -- one of the old Fort Ord military courses redesigned by Gene Bates in 2008 -- is slightly shorter, slightly easier and slightly more scenic than Bayonet.
Many of its holes sit on higher ground with fewer Monterey Pines to block the beautiful blue glimpses of the Monterey Bay. The elevated tee of the new par-3 15th hole provides a view as pretty as there is on the property.
Black Horse's bite comes from greens with more slope and bunkers with more jagged edges than Bayonet. There are two potentially drivable par 4s from the blue tees -- the uphill 265-yard sixth hole and the uphill 308-yard 16th hole.
Not everybody thinks it's a secondary option. It's often described as more playable and fun than the tight and demanding Bayonet Course. Golf Advisor user Tourpro1 gave Black Horse five stars in his review, writing the headline "Little brother beats big brother." He added: "Bayonet has always held the top spot of this two course complex. After playing, however, I must say I like this one better. Shot selection is more varied, condition was better and greens were more challenging."