THIS REGION OFFERS A GREAT DEAL OF RECREATION, INCLUDING HIKING AND HORSEBACK RIDING IN SUNOL, SWIMMING AND FISHING AT SHADOW CLIFFS AND BOATING AND CAMPING AT DEL VALLE.
starting times and frequent play. Las Positas also has a new nine-hole par-3 links course, an awesome chal- lenge for beginners, seniors and folks who simply want a quick round.
Springtown and More Billing itself as the
Livermore Valley’s “Original Links-Style Golf Course” and “Affordable Golf at Its Best,” Springtown Golf Course is a nine-hole regulation-length course. Go around twice and you have a par 70 that plays 5,723 yards from the blue tees. Nine-hole rates are $16 Monday through Friday and $18 on weekends. Dublin Ranch is the
first and only course in its namesake town, a par-63 layout designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr. The layout has 11 par 3s, five demand- ing par 4s and two par 5s, many of which offer pan- oramic views of the Liver- more Valley and Mt. Diablo. It’s a course that prides itself
on good conditioning, and a round that’s finished in less than four hours. Callippe Preserve in
Pleasanton opened in 2005, and was designed by Brian Costello. With five sets of tees that play from 4,788 to 6,748 yards, the par-72 course appeals to a wide spectrum of players. Five holes are next to sanctuar- ies preserving the Callippe butterfly, the source of the course’s name. The Bridges Golf Club
in the rolling hills above San Ramon is a Johnny Miller design. It has narrow and sloped fairways, a couple of split fairways and fast greens that require extremely accurate approach shots, a miss of which guarantees a three- jack. Par is 72 and from the back tees it has a course rating of 75.0 and a 148 slope. Did we mention Johnny Miller? The Bridges also has one of the best practice centers in the region, an asset to
help prepare golfers for a stern test. For those with access,
Ruby Hill offers a Jack Nicklaus design that is one of the longest courses in Northern California. The private club features an impressive villa-style club- house overlooking the 18th green that boasts command- ing views of Mount Diablo and the surrounding valley.
After-Golf Activities and More This region offers a
great deal of recreation, including hiking and horseback riding in Sunol, swimming and fishing at Shadow Cliffs and boating and camping at Del Valle. Wente Vineyards puts on a killer summer concert series, recently featuring Sheryl Crow, John Fogerty and Foreigner. At The Vine Cinema in Livermore you can watch a movie, get beer or wine with popcorn, or have food delivered to table seating.
Poppy Ridge maintains an active schedule of music nights throughout the summer and fall. Good food naturally fol-
lows good wine. Friends liv- ing near Livermore shared three favorite hangouts: The Underdog Wine
Bar on Tesla Road has a beautiful outdoor patio overlooking the lawn and vineyards, big comfy chairs, tapas plates and live music most evenings. It offers more than 50 wines by the glass, from single vineyard- designated wines of Ruby Hill to a Spanish Rioja. Campo Di Bocce is the place for good food and to play bocce ball with wine-glass-in-hand. It has a gorgeous patio for outdoor dining in the summer and fall. Sauced was a multi-
friend favorite, with its “saucy” ribs, smoked wings and deep-fried Oreos. The owners smoke all their own meat with apple and hickory wood and at times have live music. They also have whiskey on tap, yet another reason why there’s even more to love about Livermore.