The Santa Fe Trail

December 16, 2008

I just wrote a Frugal Golfer column for the February issue of Golf Digest about websites that can help you save some money on tee times to some of your favorite local courses.

Here's an e-mail I received about a website that can help you book a trip to stay and play golf in New Mexico. Which, if you haven't been, is worth looking into.



Golf The Santa Fe Trail, a cooperative group of eight world class courses in New Mexico, unveiled a new website. Most importantly offers the ability for golf travelers to create and plan their own customized golf vacation on-line.



__"We're pleased to announce that the new site is now live," said Matt Molloy, General Manager for Sandia Golf Club and current Santa Fe Trail President. "Not only is the site more aesthetically pleasing, but it offers a number of functional features that are certain to be popular with traveling golfers looking for information on how to golf the Santa Fe Trail. Visitors can sign-up to receive the monthly newsletter and be automatically entered to win a golf vacation that is given away at random each month," added Molloy.



Golf The Santa Fe Trail features eight high desert golf courses that are nestled along a 100-mile swatch of the Rio Grande River Valley. It's a collection of New Mexico's premier and tournament level courses that are easily accessible between, or close to, Albuquerque and Santa Fe. The list of courses are: Paa-Ko Ridge G.C., Santa Ana G.C., Twin Warriors G.C., Sandia G.C., UNM Championship Course, Isleta Eagle G.C., Black Mesa G.C. and Towa G.C.

I looked up each course rating in Golf Digest's Places to Play as well as some peak season green fees. Here's how they scored (out of a possible 5 stars):

-Paa-Ko Ridge G.C. (5 stars; Green fee: $79)

-Santa Ana G.C. (4.5 stars; Green fee: $45)

-Twin Warriors G.C. (4.5 stars; Green fee: $145)

-Sandia G.C. (4.5 stars; Green: $85)

-UNM Championship Course (4 stars; Green fee: $67)

-Black Mesa G.C. (4 stars; Green fee: $64)

-Isleta Eagle G.C. (3.5 stars for Lakes/Arroyo; Green fee: $55)

-Towa G.C. (No star rating yet; Green fee will be something close to $75 on weekdays and $90 on weekends.)

Santa Fe is one of my favorite cities in the country. The views of the red rocks, the food, the people and the golf all get high marks. Like Myrtle Beach or the Robert Trent Jones Trail in Alabama, in New Mexico you're going to get good golf for great value. The peak season in New Mexico (give or take a week) is March through early November. According to, the forecast today for Santa Fe is not good; Mid-30's with some snow but going up to the low 50's by Christmas Day.

--Matty G.*