Summer in Las Vegas means hot temperatures, cool golf deals

By Bill Bowman, Contributor

LAS VEGAS -- Okay, we've all heard -- or experienced -- the horror stories of the Las Vegas heat in the summer.

Bali Hai Golf Club - hole 16
It's a snap to get to Bali Hai G.C. from the Strip for an early tee time.
Bali Hai Golf Club - hole 16Wynn Las Vegas - hole 18Las Vegas Paiute Golf Resort

Yes, it does get hot here.

But you can play golf in that heat. You just have to use common sense (play early).

You'll also find that summer is the ideal time to book a tee time in Vegas if you're looking to save some cash while still playing top-rated golf courses.

As the temperatures rise, the golf rates go down -- way, way down in some cases. You and your buddies can tee it up during the day and save money for other Vegas-type activities.

Does it get any better than that? We didn't think so.

So grab the sunscreen, ice-cold bottles of water, light-colored shirts and shorts, your golf clubs and your buddies and we'll check out a few of the top courses on or near the famed Las Vegas Strip.

The courses

Right on the Strip are two world-class layouts that should be on everyone's must-play list: Bali Hai Golf Club (a Schmidt-Curley design with a great three-hole finishing run) on the south end, and Wynn Las Vegas (a Tom Fazio design with amazing par 3s) on the north side. Both are stunning layouts.

The courses and the staff will make players feel like a high-rolling VIP. At Bali Hai, players get mango-scented cold towels during the round to help cool them off. A nice touch.

Arroyo Golf Club at Red Rock (an Arnold Palmer design), Rhodes Ranch Golf Club (a Ted Robinson layout), Siena Golf Club (developed by Schmidt-Curley) and TPC Las Vegas (Bobby Weed, with help from Raymond Floyd) are all located a stone's throw to the west from the Strip and are all local and tourist favorites.

Centrally located just minutes from the Strip are Royal Links Golf Club (Dye Designs and a tribute to those courses that have been in the British Open rotation) and Desert Pines Golf Club (also Dye Designs with a Carolina flair).

Just south of the Strip is Revere Golf Club (Billy Casper/Greg Nash), which features two 18-hole layouts -- Lexington and Concord -- with rolling terrain and impressive views.

In northwest Las Vegas, about 20 minutes from the Strip but worlds away from the hustle and bustle, is the Las Vegas Paiute Golf Resort. Here you'll find three Pete Dye layouts that are well worth the extra travel time. At the resort, it's just you, the golf courses and the wildlife.

Beat the heat

It can be survival when you're spending four or five hours on the golf course in Las Vegas with triple-digit temperatures. That being said, surviving isn't as tough as you may think, especially if you follow a few simple ideas that should be common sense to anyone who's spent even a little time battling the heat.

Drink water -- and lots of it: You can't be too hydrated, especially on the golf course, where shade can be at a premium. And forget about beer or mixed drinks during the round. Save those for the cool confines of the casino or out by the pool after the round.

Sunscreen: Lather it on liberally and often. One of the best investments players can make is one of those soaker hats. They cool body temperatures, starting with the head, and also provide much-needed shade. Also, a wet, cold towel around the neck does wonders to keep you cool.

After the round

This is the easy part. Head for the resort's pool and relive the round as you and your buddies soak away your worries, soak in the sights and sip on a cold one -- or two.

After all, you're in Vegas, you played golf (at a substantial savings) and you and your buddies have got the rest of the afternoon and night ahead of you. Now's the time that the action off the golf course can heat up as some of the best restaurants and nightspots await.

But remember, if you have another tee time in the morning, moderation (even though that's a foreign word to many who visit here) is the key to surviving on and off the golf course.

So there you have it -- a way to fight through triple-digit temperatures with double-digit golf prices (and even low double-digit prices). So just take 18 holes of golf, add plenty of water and you have the recipe for great golf experiences in Las Vegas.

Bill BowmanBill Bowman, Contributor

Bill Bowman is a Las Vegas-based writer who has more than 40 years in the sports-writing business. He's spent the past 16-plus years covering the golf scene in Vegas and has teed it up for magazine profiles with celebrities including comedian Bill Engvall, actor Jeffrey Donovan (USA's Burn Notice), ESPN personality Colin Cowherd, NASCAR's Kurt Busch, Collective Soul's Ed Roland, the Baltimore Ravens' Jonathan Ogden and many others.

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