Surrounded by terrain that begs to be explored, Pronghorn at Juniper Preserve is as intoxicating as the high-desert air. The 7,460-yard Jack Nicklaus golf course provides a perky tour of local geography. Holes play directly toward or frame such features as Smith Rock and the Three Sisters. While it reflects the designer’s typical complexity and no small degree of difficulty, Nicklaus took some risks here in the form of split fairways, blind shots, grassy swales, crowned greens and other architectural prestidigitation, nearly all of which pay off on this unpredictable layout.

Pronghorn at Juniper Reserve, Bend / Photo: Courtesy of Visit Central Oregon

Built atop an undulating lava flow, Pronghorn plays firm and fast with crisp transitions. Pot bunkers dot immaculate fairways. Pod tees float above islands of wildflowers. Canny players will punch run-up shots to some of the canted greens, the surfaces of which are as pure as mountain water—and sometimes protected by it.

The property also boasts an impressive clubhouse designed in the style of the West’s great nation-al-park lodges, a children’s camp and adult-adventure program, a spa and fitness center, and other attractions that will enhance your stay. Golfers with some street cred may also obtain access to the private Tom Fazio golf course, which features a lava tube on the par-three eighth hole that also serves as a wine cave.

Written by: Jeff Wallach
Published: October 2, 2023
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