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Golfers who love to play mountain courses know that some of the best are in Vail Valley. These courses meander through the valleys dividing the area's soaring peaks. The region is home to more than a dozen courses, and there are another half dozen within easy driving distance. It's all just a matter of where you're staying and how much you want to spend. Some courses are only open to members and to guests at certain lodges.
Sonnenalp Golf Course. This Robert Cupp–Jay Morrish design threads through an upscale neighborhood 13 mi west of Vail. There are some serious elevation changes. Guests at the Sonnenalp Resort get preferred tee times. 1265 Berry Creek Dr., Edwards, CO, 81657. 970/477–5372. www.sonnenalp.com. Reservations essential. 18 holes. 7100 yds. Par 71. Green Fee: $170. Facilities: driving range, putting green, pitching area, golf carts, pro shop, golf academy/lessons, restaurant.
Vail Golf Club. The area's municipal course rolls along between homes and condominiums in East Vail. 1778 Vail Valley Dr., Vail, CO, 81657. 970/479–2260. www.vailgolfclub.net. Reservations essential. 18 holes. 7024 yds. Par 71. Green Fee: $109. Facilities: driving range, putting green, pitching area, golf carts, pull carts, rental clubs, pro shop, golf academy/lessons, restaurant, bar.