We know what you’re thinking: “a golf club named Bear Creek...probably another Nicklaus homage.” Although Jack certainly has his designs on the south side of Colorado (including Castle Pines) this is not one of them. In fact, it’s the handiwork of another golfing legend, Arnold Palmer. Apparently he and fellow architect Ed Seay were not able to convince the local government to rename the tributary to “King Creek”?
At any rate, players will find a route every bit as heroic and challenging as The Bear’s owns designs, as Palmer and Seay traverse across mountain streams and the mountains themselves. One element that players should pay special attention to is the size of the greens; the small putting surfaces leave little room for error upon approach.
Most daunting is No. 13: Although just 170 yards from the back tees (on a 7,200-yard route), the tees are situated high on a hill, hitting down to a pancake of a green, which is maybe four-times as wide as it is deep, and sits in front of a pond. A par will win most of the time on this hole, as doing the math to figure out the impact of the drop upon the final distance, and then executing the shot, will stump most golfers.
Long day if your game isn't sharp. You can be penalized, even when hitting good shots. That mostly happens hitting into some of the three-tiered greens. You have to get the ball on the tier where the pin is if you want to have a realistic chance at a one/two putt. Three puts abound on this course.
That said, Bear Creek will put every element of your game under pressure. The first four holes are like a punch in the mouth. It isn't always fair, but it is always good. It often isn't in very good shape, much to the chagrin of membership. This course has the potential to be one of the better courses in the state if they made some simple maintenance changes. I give it 3.5 stars, but it would be 4.5 if it were consistently in good shape.
It is a male-only golf club, and caters to those who love to play. Not walkable if you aren't in good shape.