Golf

Tucson golfers greatly appreciate the natural beauty of a high course that rests at an elevation of 3,400 feet - five degrees cooler than Tucson during the summer. del Lago Golf Club serves as the centerpiece of Rancho del Lago, a master-planned community located about 20 minutes from downtown Tucson off Interstate 10. del Lago invites all golfers to come and play the course, built by Nugent Golf Associates, the same firm that produced the Tour stop Kemper Lakes.

With 120 feet of elevation change, the club's 1st hole begins at the highest point, then plays down into the valley, coming to the back nine, which runs along Pantano Wash. The course winds its way through the hills and valleys of the high desert, with spectacular and unique views of the backside of the Rincon Mountains and the Santa Catalinas. Except for the 1st hole, which has the course's only forced carry, del Lago is golfer-friendly off the tees. Let the more skilled players play the back tees, which at 7,206 yards, carry a rating of 73.9 and a slope of 135. Par is 72.

The greens are Tif Eagle, a Bermuda hybrid, while the fairways are Bermuda in the summer and overseeded rye in the winter. Seven lakes come into play on six holes, affecting a variety of shots: some drives, several approaches - just enough to put a little spice into the round. Strong bunkering around the greens adds to the challenge. It all ends with a tough uphill par-4, 421-yard finishing hole that has water in play for two shots.