Longbow Golf Club

Reviewed By: Andy
My last golf outing in Mesa was a dud (see Painted Mountain review) so I was super pleased when I pulled into the parking lot at Longbow. I was expecting some guys with mullets and dip spit bottles to greet me at the bag drop, but that was not the case. Maybe I underestimated Mesa...

Scenery: This was also a bit unusual. Longbow is not surrounded by homes like most courses, but instead by a number of huge warehouse facilities. One is an Amazon distribution center which is about the size of four football fields. There are a handful of other buildings around the course as well, but not ugly...not detracting from the mountain views surrounding the course. What really gets you is the constant stream of small planes taking off and landing at the nearby airport. Lots of student flights doing touch-and-go loops around the airspace above the course. Literally a plane every minute. By hole 4 I had already stopped noticing (except for the occasional super-low flier). On some holes they have strategically placed shade sails which were great since we spent a lot of time waiting at the tee boxes. I would love to see more courses build shading around their properties. While I do love some nice shade trees, the sails look good and don't require watering.

Service: The guy in the pro-shop...great, the cart guys...great, bev cart gal..great...But hire some damn marshals! Our 8:40 tee time did not go until 9 and the GPS on our cart warned us every hole that we were 12-15 minutes behind. Pace of play ruins everyone's good time. When living in Colorado, those first warm weekends in the Spring would be cause for as long as 6 hour rounds of golf. You would leave with your head spinning and not looking forward to another torturous round. The pace in Arizona I have found to be excellent (with some occasional snags) but Longbow was an exception. I am hoping this was their occasional snag.

Variation: When you get to hole 10 you say, "Wait, didn't I play this hole already?" as it starts out just like hole number 1. Overall this course has a nice mix of barren areas, decent sand traps (although the sand quality was a bit heavy) and nice undulating fairways and greens. The greens had massive amounts of break but ironically our group was making 20+ foot putts every other hole. Here is a golf clap for the grounds crew for keeping them smooth and true. There is only one pond (very clean, BTW), and it really only comes into play on two holes.

Maintenance: You can't tell by the rusty signage on arrival that they keep this place neat and tidy, but they actually do a great job. Too many courses you jump into your cart to get going and have your ass burnt to all hell and back by that 140F degree vinyl cushion. Longbow's cart area sits under a nice canopy of trees keeping all of your fanny mobiles nice and cool. One thing unusual I noticed, as I arrived at the first hole, was the barren areas between the fairways were actually groomed. Not sure if they get their beach rakes out like hotel row in Cancun or if they have a machine that cleans the dirt and leaves patterns behind. Odd, but nice. Fairways were in excellent shape, traps had nice even sand (a bit pebbly, like many of the courses in the valley) and the greens were rocket fast.

Value: Excellent course for the money. If you can find a deal then even better.

To summarize, Longbow is a definite yes. I think low handicap golfers will be challenged at 7,050 yards and be pleased with the lack of contrived features. Higher handicap golfers will be pleased that the native and hazard areas can be played out of and they won't be searching for balls or swinging into rock piles. Looking forward to another round at Longbow!