Being an avid golfer living in the Denver area, I’ve been able to play a lot of different golf courses. The unfortunate thing about being a golfer in Denver is that many of the courses are private facilities and traffic getting to any course is no fun. The below list highlights some of the best public golf courses in Denver (within 45 mins). I chose courses within 45 minutes because that is how far I am willing to drive on an average day to play a regular weekend round of golf.
1) CommonGround Golf Club – Aurora, CO – 22 Mins from City Center – Through the use of "width that matters" and strategic placement of features, this Tom Doak design delivers an outstanding experience to all levels of golfers. From the raw beginner, to the most skilled player, CommonGround Golf Course has been designed to maximize the enjoyment of the game for everyone. With a commitment to tradition and excellence, Tom Doak and Renaissance Golf Design have created a masterpiece for the ages that is easy to walk, worthy of the highest level of competition, and most importantly fun to play. Although located in the heart of the city, the urban sprawl surrounding the course is unnoticeable, and the breathtaking views of the majestic front range of Colorado are a sight to behold. Given CommonGround is only about 20 mins from the city, this course is on the top of my list for the best public golf courses in Denver. The daily fee will run you about $66 for you to enjoy this track. Learn more about CommonGround.
2) Arrowhead Golf Club – Littleton, CO – 43 mins from City Center – Nestled in the foothills of Colorado's majestic Rocky Mountains in Littleton, Arrowhead Golf Club's stunning championship golf course, upscale amenities, unmatched event capabilities and superb service offer guests a foursome of reasons to visit. Arrowhead Golf Club's magnificent Robert Trent Jones, Sr./Robert Trent Jones, Jr. designed championship layout serves as the centerpiece to a full-service daily fee property open to the public seven days a week for golf, dining and special events. Their property has been 300 million years in the making, featuring extreme elevation changes, abundant wildlife, and thousands of feet of ancient red sandstone rocks towering majestically above the fairways. Arrowhead is one of the top 10 most-photographed golf courses in the world, has been voted the #1 public golf course in the Denver area, as well as one of America's "Top 75 Public Courses" by Golf Digest. Arrowhead serves as truly the golf experience of a lifetime. This beautiful landscape and course can be played for $129.95 on the weekends. Learn more about Arrowhead.
3) Riverdale Dunes – Brighton, CO – 30 Mins from City Center – The Dunes course, designed by Pete and Perry Dye, is a Scottish style links course, meandering along the South Platte River. Plenty of pot bunkers, mounds and water, and (naturally) the trademark railroad ties, are featured on this consistently top-rated public golf course in Colorado. Rated “One of America’s most affordable courses” by Golf Magazine, “# 1 Public Course in Colorado” by Colorado Golfer Newspaper, “One of America’s Best Courses Everyone Can Play” by Golf Digest, “Top 75 Public Courses by Golf Digest Magazine & Denver’s most affordable course 2014 by Avid Golfer. The Knolls is a traditional park-style layout, but criss-crossed by canals, The Knolls has plenty of hazards, trees, and features many elevated greens. Don’t take this course lightly – good course management is in order here! This is one great dollar value! With a cart, the price of a round tops out at $49 for the Dunes and $33 for the Knolls. Learn more about Riverdale Dunes.
4) The Ridge at Castle Pines Golf Club – Castle Pines, CO – 31 Mins from City Center – The Ridge at Castle Pines North, a premier Troon Golf managed facility, is one of Colorado's most prestigious and upscale public golf courses. Since opening in 1997, The Ridge has received both national and statewide recognition in various publications. The Ridge at Castle Pines North has four sets of tees that measure from 5,000 yards to more than 7,000 yards in length. The Ridge is an award winning example of Tom Weiskopf's fluent, well-proportioned layout that presents players with roomy fairways, sculpted bunkers and large, rolling greens. Carved from a thick forest of Gambel Oaks and Ponderosa Pines in the foothills of the Front Range. The Ridge also traces open terrain where sight lines stretch south to Pike's Peak, Devil's Head, Mt. Evans, and even downtown Denver and Denver International Airport some 30 miles away. Finishing hole 18, you'd swear things couldn't get better until you have a drink and lunch on one of Denver's best patios overlooking the Castle Rock valley below. A round here will set you back $99. Learn more about The Ridge at Castle Pines.
I hope you enjoyed learning about the best public golf courses in Denver. Given Denver can be cold during some points of the year, check out this article about the best indoor golf places in Denver.