Aguila GC, Phoenix. Gary Panks, 2000.

A good municipal course built in a surprisingly flat area near South Mountain.

There are some good holes and nice views to be had—the mirror-image eighth and 17th make a good pair of risk/reward short par 4s playing over or around a pond, for example.

And I like the run of holes starting with the par 4 11th, a narrow hole that ends with a green perched above a lone front right bunker. The 12th double back, a long par 4 with no bunkers and a green tucked in a hollow.

After the long 12th, the 13th is just a little hole, less than 15 yards even from the back tees, and under 120 from most other tees. But the green is narrow and falls off dangerously to bunkers on the right.

The 14th is a shorter par 4, moving slightly right, but the green is a tricky target between two bunkers. Finally the 15th is a massive par 5 that starts with a carry over desert to a fairway that bends right to left between a trio of bunkers.

The side-by-side ninth and 18th with a pond between their greens don’t do much for me. Those kinds of watery finishing holes just reek of 90s excess that this muni happily eschews in many other ways.

But if that’s the worst you can say for a muni, you’re doing pretty well. Expect muni maintenance (sometimes great, sometimes … not) and a course that looks entirely artificial and you won’t be disappointed.

Arizona 7th Decile [2019]

#5 green (Credit: Golf Pass)