Golf courses California Santa Barbara Rancho San Marcos Golf Course

Rancho San Marcos Golf Course

4600 Hwy 154, Santa Barbara, California, 93105
Type: Semi-Private, open to the public
No. Holes: 18
(805) 683-6334
Architect: Robert Trent Jones Jr. (88)
                      
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Detailed description of Rancho San Marcos Golf Course

Rancho San Marcos Golf Course, is a Semi-Private, 18 hole golf course located in Santa Barbara, California.

Originally designed by Robert Trent Jones, Jr. in 1998 - and recently renovated by owner, Ty Warner - this 6800 yard Par 71 course offers stunning views of the Santa Ynez River Valley, distant furrowed peaks and eagles soaring above Lake Cachuma.

The front nine is mostly flat and somewhat average, the back nine is delightful with variety, elevation change, and views of the Santa Ynez Mountains and Lake Cachuma. Two of the holes have forced carries over ravines, doglegs, three pars threes in a stretch of four holes.  

Par for the course is 71. From the back tees the course plays to 6,817 yards. From the forward tees the course measures 5,004 yards. The longest hole on the course is # 6, a par-5 that plays to 629 yards. The shortest hole on the course is # 14, a par-3 that plays to 175 yards from the back tees.

Watch out for # 6, a 629 yard par-5 challenge and the #1 handicap hole on the course. The easiest hole at Rancho San Marcos Golf Course is # 7, a 179 yard par-3.

This course has been reviewed 18 times
Golf Course ranker Photo
Santa Barbara, CA

$31 (cart included), played on Tuesday, December 2018 at 11:30 AM

Excellent course

Would travel: 20-30 Miles, Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: I would play again, Better than average course for the area, Fair priced based on quality and competitive area pricing
 
Price, Pace of Play, Difficulty, Ambiance, Staff, No Houses on Course
None worth mentioning
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 029361
Golf Course ranker Photo, Bill Homyak
Chula Vista, CA

$61 (cart included), played on Wednesday, April 2017 at

Played 36 holes on this course in one day with an UnderPar coupon. My 3'some was first off at 7 in the morning and played in a little over 3 hours. The course is fun, challenging, and very scenic. The greens were pretty good but just a bit firm which made getting the ball to sit down a real test. The course is well maintained and the staff is friendly. The front nine plays in a flat river valley while the back nine climbs a ridge. The fairways are generous but don't stray too far from them as natural vegetation will take its toll on your score. Watch out for hole #15, a dogleg left par 4 that plays up on a narrow outcropping of land and normally has a strong left to right wind sweeping your approach shot into unplayable lies. Fun downhill drive on the scenic finishing par 5 hole. Definitely worth a trip to play this one.

Would travel: 60-120 Miles, Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: Better than average course for the area, Ranks with the best in this price level, Best course in the area
 
Difficulty, Ambiance, Layout, No Houses on Course
None worth mentioning
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 028775
Golf Course ranker Photo
Marina Del Rey, CA

$31 (cart included), played on Sunday, January 2014 at 8am

Used to be great but the fairways are dead. You will be hitting off packed dirt with a lot of dust. Call the course re the conditions. When I asked what happened they admitted that they no longer take Internet reservations because of the conditions. But golfnow still sells cheap rounds... Not worth it.

Would travel: 0-10 Miles, Not Vacation Worthy
Bottom line:
 
Price
Condition of Course, Difficulty, Ambiance, Pace of Play
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 021428
Golf Course ranker Photo
Encino, CA

Guest (cart included), played on Saturday, August 2013 at 6am

They haven't watered the fairways. Course is the worst I have ever played. You have to hit off dirt for every shot in the fairways. Course shouldn't be open until they can grow grass. Not worth it at any price.

Would travel: 0-10 Miles, Not Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: Worse than average course for the area
 
Staff, Pro Shop
Condition of Course, Price
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 021135
Golf Course ranker Photo
Simi Valley, CA

$61 (cart included), played on Sunday, May 2013 at noon

We got a price that was much lower than usual. The day was dry and so was the course. Balls hit into high dry grass resulted in things sticking in your socks. Carts without GPS and not good markings in the course. Sister course to Sandpiper which was a nicer course though more expensive.

Would travel: 10-20 Miles
Bottom line: Bargain priced based on quality and competitive area pricing
 
Ambiance, No Houses on Course
Condition of Course, Layout
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 020024
Golf Course ranker Photo, John Anewalt
San Diego, CA

$76 (cart included), played on Wednesday, September 2012 at 8am

Plenty of water on the course. With an early tee time it is foggy and cool then warms up later. We saw deer and wild turkeys on the course

Would travel: 20-30 Miles, Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: I would play again, Better than average course for the area, Ranks with the best in this price level
 
Layout, Ambiance, No Houses on Course
Food/Bar Facilities
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
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Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 018880
Golf Course ranker Photo
Santa Barbara, CA

$76 (cart included), played on Friday, May 2012 at 10am

Range balls also included with green fees!

Would travel: 30-60 Miles, Not Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: I would play again, Better than average course for the area
 
Difficulty
Price
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
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Pace to play
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Value
Rank ID # : 017748
Golf Course ranker Photo
Mission Viejo, CA

$101 (cart included), played on Sunday, April 2012 at 10am

The course was in absolutely perfect condition. The layout is great and it is one of the most scenic courses I've ever played. It was an outstanding golf course and is now one of my favorites. Probably not a good course for elderly players or duffers, because the course is challenging. In the spring, the rough is thick and next to the rough is knee high grass which will eat golf balls, so bad shots are punished. I read some of the negative reviews about this course and have to wonder if these grumps played the same course? There is plenty of water available on the course and it's cold and clean. The cart girl was out and she was attentive. The club house staff was great and most attentive. And frankly, the course is as scenic as you will ever find. It was just beautiful. I had a great experience and recommend this place to any avid golfer than can hit the ball 200 yards.

Would travel: 0-10 Miles, Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: I would play again, Ranks with the best in this price level
 
Condition of Course, Layout, Ambiance
Pace of Play
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
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Value
Rank ID # : 017546
Golf Course ranker Photo
Santa Barbara, CA

$76 (cart included), played on Tuesday, October 2011 at 10am

Best greens in Santa Barbara County right now, and always great in the Fall - fast and true. Part of a regular rotation of Sandpiper, Montecito CC, Valley Club, Ojai Valley. Highly recommend this often overlooked gem in Santa Barbara!

Would travel: 0-10 Miles, Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: I would play again
 
Condition of Course, Layout, Price, Ambiance, No Houses on Course, Pace of Play
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 016096
Golf Course ranker Photo
Santa Barbara, CA

Member (cart not included), played on Wednesday, April 2011 at noon

I have played this course since its inception and find it to be in as good as condition now as ever. When busy, speed of play can be very slow especially for a single or twosome when following 3 or more. It`s a great walking course; the greens putt true, the tees have just been reseeded and revamped for the better and the staff is friendly and accommodating.

Would travel: 20-30 Miles, Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: I would play again, Better than average course for the area
 
Condition of Course, Layout, Ambiance, No Houses on Course, Staff
Pace of Play, Clubhouse
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 013754
Golf Course ranker Photo
Santa Barbara, CA

$41 (cart not included), played on Wednesday, July 2010 at 10am

Price checked is w/ annual membership. My favorite within 30 miles of Santa Barbara. Greens are fast and true. Plays harder in the winter and spring when rough is allowed to grow. Scenic location. This is a challenging but fair layout. On some holes you pay a big penalty for errant shots. Great practice area.

Would travel: 30-60 Miles, Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: I would play again, Best course in the area, Bargain priced based on quality and competitive area pricing
 
Condition of Course, Layout, Price, No Houses on Course, Pace of Play
Food/Bar Facilities
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 010809
Golf Course ranker Photo
Santa Barbara, CA

$46 (cart not included), played on Wednesday, May 2010 at 10am

Rancho is a terrific course and a good value. I have played it many times and have always found it very challenging and fair.

Would travel: 30-60 Miles, Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: I would play again, Ranks with the best in this price level, Best course in the area, Fair priced based on quality and competitive area pricing
 
Condition of Course, Difficulty, Layout, Ambiance
None worth mentioning
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 010190
Golf Course ranker Photo
Brea, CA

$71 (cart included), played on Wednesday, March 2010 at noon

This course was nmot fun at all, the greens were impossible, the fairways narrow and nothing to help with yardage. The scenery was beautiful but I wouldn't play or recommend this course again at any price.

Would travel: 0-10 Miles, Not Vacation Worthy
Bottom line:
 
None worth mentioning
Difficulty
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 009543
Golf Course ranker Photo
Camarillo, CA

$76 (cart included), played on Friday, September 2009 at noon

For a Robert Trent Jones, Jr. design, this has to be one of the worst cow pastures I've played in years. The reasons why are far too many to mention here, but let it suffice to say that the expense ($120 regularl weekday rate) is far too great for the experience, or lack thereof, offered. The course is in poor condition, and there are ZERO graphical renderings of the course available to players (none in the cart, on the scorecard, or on the tee boxes), to show where to hit tee shots (many are blind). There are no water coolers on the course, and it is brutally hot there in the summer and fall. The signage is poor, and there was no beverage services on the course, even though we saw a girl stocking the cart before we teed off. The pro shop staff is apathetic, and only cares about one thing: getting your money. I highly recommend that all golfers stay away from this money pit. There are many other good layouts to play in the region for far less money. Rancho San Marcos gets a huge thumbs DOWN, and a big jeer to Beanie Baby mogul Ty Warner for purchasing and managing this dog track. What a miserable excuse for a purported top-rated course. Boo!

Would travel: 0-10 Miles, Not Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: Better courses for less nearby, Worse than average course for the area
 
Difficulty, No Houses on Course
Condition of Course, Layout, Price, Ambiance, Staff, Clubhouse, Food/Bar Facilities , Pro Shop
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 008372
Golf Course ranker Photo
Ventura, CA

$76 (cart included), played on Friday, September 2009 at noon

The course is in an area that gets very hot....even so, no water is furnished to the players, and the only water on the course is some kind of fountain that is not even cooled-----water was almost too hot to drink.

However, my biggest complaint was that there was no layout of the golf course provided; so that no one in our group knew how to play the course, stay away from trouble, etc. etc. When we mentioned this to the pro after our round as constructive criticism to which he should should have paid attention and learned something, he was rude and said, "too hard for you?"

Lastly, the fees for where this course is located are way out of line, and there were no amenities provided....also no bag drop area and parking is a long ways from the starting area.

This is definitely not a pleasurable almost $100 golf experience!

Would travel: 0-10 Miles
Bottom line:
 
Condition of Course
Layout, Price, Ambiance, Staff, Food/Bar Facilities
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 008371
Golf Course ranker Photo
Bakersfield, CA

$76 (cart included), played on Wednesday, September 2009 at 8am

Moorpark Country Club is a better value on weekdays. Not as expensive and just as challenging a course.

Would travel: 60-120 Miles, Not Vacation Worthy
Bottom line:
 
Condition of Course
Price
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 008364
Golf Course ranker Photo
Bel Air, MD

$101 (cart included), played on Friday, December 2008 at 8am

With a 7:00am tee time, we easily had lunch and two rounds on this ex-working ranch. Great lay-out and the staff are great. Especially like the open fire pits when you arrive in the early am.

Would travel: 120-300 Miles, Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: I would play again, Ranks with the best in this price level, Best course in the area
 
Condition of Course, Layout, Ambiance, No Houses on Course, Pace of Play, Staff, Clubhouse, Pro Shop
None worth mentioning
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 006200
Golf Course ranker Photo
Santa Barbara, CA

$71 (cart included), played on Friday, May 2008 at 8am

The conditions were good - something that is not always the case

Would travel: 30-60 Miles, Vacation Worthy
Bottom line: I would play again, Ranks with the best in this price level
 
Difficulty, Layout, Price, No Houses on Course
Layout/ Challenge
Fairway conditions
Greens conditions
Course ambiance
Pace to play
Overall rating
Value
Rank ID # : 003441
3.4/5
Based on 18 reviews
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