Pacific heights: The third hole at Torrey Pines.
Evan Schiller
Friday, December 03, 2010

Torrey Pines (South)
La Jolla, Calif.
800-985-4653
Course Finder Profile | torreypinesgolfcourse.com
Greens Fee: $130-$163; $41-47 (San Diego residents)

\nSERVICE

\nHa! More like self service. Bag drop? Greeters? Right. For all its prestige, this is a low-frills operation, where a lot of locals still show up in jeans. If you hear your name called from the waiting list, you pay at a window and hustle to the tee.

\nPACE OF PLAY

\nWith a tee sheet as crammed as a San Diego freeway and a challenging layout with postcard views from every hole, cancel your lunch plans. Aside from the first groups, no one gets off Torrey in under four-and-a-half hours.

\nQUALITY

\nThough better groomed than the average public track, this is no country club. The best time to play is right after the PGA Tour stop, when it has been manicured. The front nine is ho-hum but the course blossoms on the back.

\nVALUE

\nA steal for locals, Torrey takes its pound of flesh from out-of-towners, but we won't complain. This is a splendid course in a killer location. Try to play great golf elsewhere on the California coast and you'll pay much, much more.

\nVERDICT

\nLocals who don't play here regularly should have their sanity checked. Outsiders who don't play here periodically should have the same done to their pulse.

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