FORT LUPTON, Colo. -- At 6,412 yards, Coyote Creek Golf Course defers to hazards other than length to defend its honor.
Water makes some cameo appearances throughout the round, but it's thick, club-twisting, ball-eating rough that rules the day at this solid city-owned municipal golf course northwest of Denver.
"We add bite to the rough. You need to stay out of jail and stay in the fairway," said Pat Marek, the general manager at Coyote Creek.
Marek credited a dedicated grounds crew for keeping the rough lush and the greens well conditioned. "I hear all the time that we have the best greens in the state (for a public course)," Marek said.
Architect Matt Eccles wisely designed Coyote Creek in 1999 to be extremely walkable, a characteristic that draws players from miles away. The par-71 layout, while mostly on flat terrain through a subdivision, throws enough twists and turns to keep things interesting. Ditches at the par-4 first and par-5 ninth holes seem to collect balls like magnets. The 210-yard 11th hole and the all-carry shot from the 13th tee are the highlights of the five par 3s.
On a clear day, the mountains dominate the horizon.
"It is a well kept secret," says Ken Kreutzer, who lives in nearby Brighton. "It is a great place to play. The course is in immaculate shape. It is challenging."