Central Washington golf courses affected by wildfires
Gamble Sands is OK, but Alta Lake was hit hard.
Special to The Seattle Times
Gamble Sands, the new golf course outside Brewster by noted designer David McLay Kidd, was undamaged despite Central Washington wildfires and opens Saturday, but Alta Lake Golf Course, about 15 miles from Gamble Sands outside Pateros, was hit hard.
The Alta Lake pro shop and living quarters above it, and a fleet of new golf carts were destroyed in the fire as were more than 50 homes, including co-owner Parker Barth’s new residence. The maintenance building burned the next day when a gas tank exploded.
The facility’s motel is intact but needs repair work.
Barth said the golf course is “green and playable” thanks to emergency measures to keep the back nine watered using power from generators. The front nine, which opened in 1974, is on a well system. Gamble Sands has loaned equipment to help Alta Lake. “The golf course is surviving,” Barth said. “It wants to stay alive.”
Alta Lake is a popular destination for Western Washington golfers on a budget.
Gamble Sands has been featured in national golf publications and is an upscale golf destination. Kidd is best known as the designer of Bandon Dunes on the Oregon Coast. Kidd’s mission with Gamble Sands is a return to an emphasis on playability after years of designing courses criticized as too difficult. Standard greens fees for walkers are $130, or $85 after 2 p.m.
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Sports-information reports contributed