Monthly Archives: September 2015


Video/Photo Post: Benham Falls in Bend, Ore.


On an overcast morning during my stay at Sunriver Resort, just outside of Bend, Ore., I decided to look for a hike instead of a golf course.

I was directed to Benham Falls, the trail for which started just on the edge of the sprawling and heavily forested Sunriver property. It turned out be one of the best travel audibles, and hikes, ever.

The hike begins with a tranquil stroll through the forest over a paved trail until at about the 2-mile mark you cross a wooden bridge over the Deschutes River. This is an optimal place to admire the scenery of central Oregon and even glean a little history of the river. There are educational signs posted along the banks about the discovery of the area, logging, etc.

Once you cross the bridge, it’s about 500 yards to that movie moment where you can hear the falls but not quite see them. In another 100 feet or so, you can get close enough to the river to see it turning turbid. Beyond that, you’re free to follow the beauty and power of natural unleashed for miles through towering canyon falls lined with pine trees and giant logs strewn across the river.


Not anticipating there’d be so much to follow and actually see (and I did have a later tee time to keep), I only tracked the falls through the first of its few dramatic and scenic turns in the river, but the trails give you some awesome and varied perspectives to do so. Those natural landings and outcroppings allowed for the videos that follow.

This was the first time I’d hiked a falls, and it made it immediately memorable and among the best I’d taken.

The short list of memorable hikes:

Sweetheart Rock in Lanai
Torrey Pines
Benham Falls
Smith Rock (same trip – more on this in a later post)

So if you get to central Oregon, definitely hike the falls, and those to follow. It surely will be as memorable for you as it was for me.



A Q &A With Dr. Bobby Awadalla, Inventor Of UVO


It’s sun protection in a bottle, but it isn’t sunscreen – it’s a supplement that you drink.

In short, that’s UVO, the new approach to skin protection developed by Laguna Beach dermatologist Bobby Awadalla. The nutrients and other elements in the 30 ingredients that comprise UVO naturally bolster the immune system to provide 3-5 to hours of supplemental sun protection.

After five years of developing the formula, Dr. Awadalla finally released the product this year. It has found regional success that he’s hoping will be national in the near future.

Dr. Awadalla recently look a few minutes to talk about UVO’s development and share some of its success. I will disclose up front that a golf playing partner and I took UVO before a recent round on an 80-85 degree day, didn’t use sunblock, and a suffered no ill effects.

The formula is promoted as Orange Peach, but it tasted more like a tangerine to me. It’s like Gatorade to drink and can be served warm or chilled. As for a taste, I’ll just say that I like it better than my protein shake.
Here’s my interview with Dr. Awadalla.

How did the idea for the product occur to you, and how did you end up looking for the answer on the supplement side?

It began with my frustration over seeing severely sun-damaged people who had skin cancer due to their lack of application of sunscreen. It just boggled by mind that this was still happening.

I did some research of the use of topical medicine to treat skin conditions, include psoriasis. I found that people didn’t use it very consistently, even if they had skin disease.

I thought, maybe we need to rethink this.

What we do every day is drink and eat, regardless of what’s happening in our lives, and there’s a lot of evidence that shows vitamins, anti-inflammatories and phytonutrients protect us from the sun.

After five years of formulation, I came up with good formula to provide skin protection, and that’s now UVO.

What’s the biggest challenge to getting people to use or accept UVO?

The difficult part is educating people who think you can only apply something to your skin to protect you from the sun. This is a new concept and that’s why education is part of the promotion.

How and when did you know UVO worked?

I was comfortable with the science right away because I knew all the time and effort that went into creating it, but it wasn’t until we tested 15 people that we had the studies to prove it.

We tested about 15 people and the studies showed that within 30 minutes you had a 40 percent increase in the amount of UV radiation required to burn. Then we discovered something by accident: UVO worked retroactively to stop a burn from happening and worked to heal the burn, so it works proactively and retroactively.

Burns are mostly an inflammation. The anti-inflammatories in UVO help stop the inflammatory process and soothe the symptoms of sunburn.

Wow. Sunscreen can’t do that.

No. It also has other functions that make it a very versatile product. It stops DNA damage, collagen damage and protects and repairs cell membranes. It also stops free radicles.

You can compare sunscreen and UVO this way: Sunscreen does one thing well; UVO does many things well.

What SPF is UVO the equivalent of? Is the protection the same for everyone or does it vary?

We all have different skin types and we all absorb and utilize supplements differently, so there will be variation. That’s why we say 3-5 hours of protection on the bottle.

UVO will probably never get to the level of a 50 SPF, but even an SPF 5 provides 80 percent UV blockage so having baseline protection makes a difference. Overall most people who drink UVO should have a good experience and experience different levels of protection from it. We encourage people to be conservative in the trial phase while finding out exactly how it works for them.

What groups or demographics have most readily adapted UVO?

We have found that health conscious individuals who live an active outdoor lifestyle love our product. We already have a good following in the skim boarding and beach volleyball communities. We’re just breaking in with the surfers. Beach/water and outdoors sports are huge for us, and we’re already got a following.

We’d really like to see swimmers, paddle boarders – especially stand-up paddle boarders – using it.

Besides your web site – – where can people expect to find the product at retail?

We want to be distributed within the natural food channels, so Whole Foods, Mother’s Market, Sprouts, Gelson’s Market, places like that.

We want to be in pharmacies, so the sun-protection section of CVS, Walgreens, we’d like to be there as well as surf shops, cycle shops and at golf and tennis clubs. We’re already at some of those places, and are looking to expand further in the near term.

How do you see UVO as a fit with golf?

Golf is very right for this product. The normal round takes between 3-5 hours, and golfers don’t like to get sunscreen on their hands / gloves so they can drink UVO to provide supplemental protection for the entirety of their game. Golf is an ideal sport for it.

What are your hopes for growth and use of the product over the next year?

A year from now, I’d like to see the product be national, beyond just being on our web site and around Laguna Beach. We’re spending the next few months really trying to establish ourselves regionally in SoCal. But we definitely want to be national by next summer.

You can find more info. about UVO and the recommended use if it in an FAQ at the UVO web site:


green view

Highlight Hole: No. 13 At Pronghorn Golf Club (Nicklaus Course)

green view

After three days of being treated to some of the best and most beautiful golf central Oregon has to offer, I discovered a golf hole that trumps them all.

The par 4 13th on the Nicklaus Course at Pronghorn Golf Club is a sight to behold, a joy to play and shrine to Oregon golf at its dramatic best. And perhaps best of all, you get a 360-degree appreciation of this magnificent golf hole (more on that in a bit).

new 13

No. 13 is a short dogleg right par 4 played to green guarded by a pond on the right and a massive sand trap in the back. Truth be told, the trap is mostly scenery (you shouldn’t be in there) but it adds a visual accent to the hole akin to the how the beach complements the ocean. In fact, that’s what it looks like: Pronghorn Beach.


The tee shot with tail wind is played over the pond to a generous fairway with a fly-over pot bunker. The approach is the type of shot golfer’s live for.


With likely a wedge in hand, you’re looking at a shot that’s a feast for the golf senses. The backdrop is a massive rockwall with two waterfalls to the right filling a pond that should be taken mostly out of play with a decent drive. A sizeable green gives you ample room for a safe landing in regulation and a shot at a cherished birdie or par. (One caveat about my playing experience: We’ve had absolutely perfect weather; local rumor is that the wind can really blow here.)

A bit like No. 3 at Monarch Beach, the famed par-4 ocean hole, this is hardly the toughest hole on the course – and believe me, Tom Fazio gives you plenty of those – but it’s one you’ll never forget. But unlike No. 3 at Monarch, you get a preview and a post-view of No. 13 at Pronghorn.

You glimpse it for the first time passing by on the front nine – we could hear the excited golf banter on the tee (“Can I just build a house here?) – and then unexpectedly get to experience 13 again on the 18th tee, where you get a bird’s-eye view of the hole.

The view from 18 allows you to appreciate the creek that feeds the waterfalls and tempts you to pull a wedge and try the ultimate flop shot back to the 13th green. But alas, the tee shot on 18 awaits and a close to an extraordinary golf experience that is sure to give you an indelible impression of golf in central Oregon.


Highlight Hole: No. 17 At Tetherow

No. 17 tee

The blog is on a Pacific Northwest swing. You’ll see this content being presented over the next few weeks, if not longer.

Here’s a sample. This is the par 3 17th at Tetherow, a links course in Bend, Oregon. After being treated to repeated stunning uses of the desert topography, towering trees and snow-capped mountain vistas, you can come to the par 3 17th, which is the most gorgeous use of it all.


Carved out of an old quarry, this hole is simply striking from the tee and one you savor as you tee it up from about 165 yards.

Looking back from the green, you appreciate the array of desert autumnal hues.

No. 17 green

What a start to my introduction to golf in central Oregon. You’ll be reading much more about the area and courses in future posts.

MAD Home Page Screeen Shot

Maderas: Welcome To The New

MAD Home Page Screeen Shot

Those who frequent our web site,, have noticed significant changes in the last two months as we’ve been upgrading our site.

The good news is that we’re nearing the end of our technical tweaks and feel the site is functioning in the manner in which we intended when we undertook this necessary process.

Besides trying to stay current and relevant in a time of constant technological evolution, the main thrust of the new site is to try serve all of you best by accommodating all the ways in which people access our site now – desktop, mobile, tablet, etc. is now access-friendly to all platforms, meaning you can book everything from a tee time to a dinner reservation on any device you choose. There’s no telling where technology will take us in a year or two from now, but we believe that our new site will allow us to, as we say in golf, play it where it lies.

This post will highlight the primary functions of the site and should act as your guide to using them. If at any time you should encounter technical troubles, please don’t hesitate to contact me ( as there will always be ongoing maintenance of the site that may require attention. We appreciate your assistance, and patience, with these efforts.

The chief function of the site is to assist you in booking tee times. You can book your rounds with a few simple clicks through a portal, or pull-down menu on mobile, marked Book Tee Times on the home page. After designating whether you a San Diego resident (six months annually of residency required) or a non-resident, you’re able to choose from available tee times and special offers, such as having specially priced Pro V1 golf balls included with your round.

Besides ease of service and ability to peruse your options, there’s a financial incentive for booking through the web site as well, says Maderas Director of Golf Hale Kelly.

“We legitimately have the best rates guaranteed at our web site. You may see the same rate posted on (a host of book sites), but there’s always a booking fee involved. That’s where we can save you money.”

MAD Booking Page Screen Shot

You’re still welcome to call the pro shop at 858.451.8100 but know that the web site is designed to quickly and affordably accommodate you in booking your reservation and in that regard is your best and most efficient option.

In this day and age of the technologically savvy and prudent consumer, we’ve also increased our resources in helping you make your decision to choose our course by showing why we’re regarded as one of the top 100 golf courses in America by Golf Digest.

We’ve updated our digital photography and video content to help you preview the Maderas golf experience to the best extent we can to be on par with the real thing. The blog post you’re reading is also part of an extensive collection of content meant to inform about golf at Maderas and, occasionally, life in San Diego and Southern California at large. You can find a trove of lesson videos from our Director of Instruction Chris Mayson as well as useful and timely articles to keep you current on goings on at Maderas, and around golf, to enhance your experience, be it on the course or in the clubhouse. We regard the blog as an extension of the excellent customer service we aim to provide at Maderas.

That said, here are a few other things you can do at our new site to take additional advantage of the host of amenities and services Maderas provides to its members and guests.

You can:

Book a caddie – Maderas is partnered with Premier Caddie, and our “Caddie Service” tab walks you through the range of caddie options (forecaddie or professional) and caddie services provided by each and also details rates and provides a guide to the gratuity. If you’ve never taken a caddie, it’s an option to consider. It’s simply a different game with the level of service and course confidence they provide.

Reserve rental clubs – Maderas recently updated its rental clubs to the Callaway X Hot line and our “Club Rental” details the set, allows you to service premium clubs for your round and take advantage of receiving a complimentary set of six Supersoft golf balls.


Book a lesson – Our “Maderas Golf Academy” tab is your guide to booking a lesson at Maderas with a member of experienced professional staff. Our page details all the practice resources available at Maderas as well as provides professional pros, contact info. and rates for our pros. Club fitting is also available at Maderas if you’d like to have your equipment as finely tuned as your game.

Peek in on our pros –
The LPGA’s Tiffany Joh is among our staff pros, and she has her own tab to provide you a look inside the life of a pro and glean a little insight into how the pros hone their game at Maderas.


Book a wedding – Maderas is an increasingly popular wedding destination, and our web site has vast and growing resources to assist couples considering Maderas as a wedding venue. We’re constantly updating our content to assist brides and grooms in making this life-changing decision by sharing our services as well as the experiences of others who’ve started their new lives at Maderas.

Shop our virtual pro shop – The Maderas pro shop is virtually represented under the “Golf Shop” tab and allows you to peruse and choose from a limited selection of our apparel and accessories. Also of note, especially around holidays and birthdays, gift cards can be purchased here and have universal use at Maderas.

kobe burger

Dine with us – You can make reservations for The Grille at Maderas, including for our popular Wednesday Burger Night, through our site. You can also survey our ever-changing menu and detailed information about and our fresh and local offerings, including a range of craft beers.

Those are the highlights of the new site, but as you explore you’ll find even more tabs and virtual resources (such as how to get a free round for your birthday) to guide you through your Maderas experience.

If, by chance, there’s something the site doesn’t provide that you feel would benefit your experience, and that of future members and guests, please bring it to our attention. We’re happy to have to have you as a content caddie if you see an area of possible improvement, and we’re also encouraging of you sharing your experience at Maderas with others through the social media channels we make widely and readily available at the site.

But, at present, we believe our Maderas virtual experience is uploaded, upgraded and ready to serve you wherever and however you choose. Thanks for stopping by. We hope to see you at the club very soon.


Four Observations About The Playing Experience At Pauma Valley


There are some calls in Southern California golf that simply must be answered. You don’t turn down a tee time at Torrey Pines South, nor do you tell Sherwood Country Club, or a handful of elite others in the LA area, to hold. I’m guessing the same holds true for Pebble Beach, Pelican Hill, etc., but my caller ID hasn’t put me to that test yet (but line one is open).

Pauma Valley is one of those. You have to know SoCal golf on a certain level to know about Pauma Valley, kind of like that cool club in a tourist town only locals seem to know about it. Pauma maintains a low profile in its mountain surrounds but holds a high profile for, among others, golfers looking to retire with the game or live the lifestyle it offers.

Pauma Valley provides all of that from sun up to twilight and course to clubhouse. It’s a place where you can live the game and get lost in it in quiet isolation from the outside world if you so choose.

And for decades, host of Hollywood celebrities and others have done just that often via the club’s private landing strip, which still does steady traffic.

Intrigued yet? Here’s an overview of the Pauma Valley experience.

pauma 3pauma 4

A True Golf Oasis – Finding Pauma Valley is the first challenge. That’s more easily done in these days of GPS, but you’ll hardly be the first to drive the 76 and wonder if a course actually exists. Even more so than some of the covert country clubs in SoCal, Pauma Valley truly gives you no clue until the gates suddenly appear.

But when you arrive? Pure golf paradise. The stunning mountain backdrop and fountains spouting amongst the greens make an indelible first impression that speaks to any golfer no matter your level of connection to the game.
I don’t know how many courses you remember seeing for the first time … but this will be one of them.

pauma 2par 5

A Fair Test of Golf –
Pauma Valley was Robert Trent Jones Sr.’s first California course project and among his most prized anywhere (I’m told he only ranked Spyglass ahead of it). The word “fair” is a tenant of Jones’ design philosophy and it rings impeccably true at Pauma Valley. Good shots have good outcomes. The rest? Well, it’s best to learn where you can miss at Pauma Valley, but it’s rare that you’ll get a result you didn’t feel was deserved. And sometimes the course even helps you out. I had a shot stop short of a woodchip-base OB boundary that I still can’t believe held up, but it allowed me to salvage par from my best drive of the day.

And unlike some California courses that can have split-personality nines, Pauma is a consistent test, though the back is more elevated and thus the more scenic side of the two. The bunkers at Pauma visually challenge golfers repeatedly but aren’t overly penal compared to some of the other elite courses in SoCal (Torrey South, anyone?).
Also unlike Torrey South, the par 4s are of reasonable distance on a course that can be had with a hot round.

There’s no hole here that seems unconquerable (I nearly parred the No. 1-handicap hole on my first try) and you quickly learn mostly that position it as a premium for success, a true shot-makers golf course.

john wayneNo. 14

Left: The plot of the former John Wayne home. Right: No. 14.

The Legend and the Lore – The first time I played Pauma Valley, I had little insight into its rich history and its celebrity membership over the years. A passing “Oh, that’s John Wayne’s house” on No. 14 was the closest I got to a true history lesson – and that was a bit inaccurate (it’s the plot, yes, but not the house).

I got a more detailed introduction the second time … and even a book on the subject.

You can read tales about the days of Rev. Billy Graham’s time as a member as well as about when a program called “Challenge Golf,” produced by Arnold Palmer, recorded the likes of legends Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player competing at Pauma Valley shortly after it opened in 1961.

These days you’re more likely to hear about Huey Lewis shot in his latest round. But there are always tales to be told at Pauma Valley.

10 teeegreen 10

No. 10

A Mountain Masterpiece of Design – If you truly appreciate course design, Pauma Valley must be seen – and, naturally, played. The way the mountain views unfold around you as the round evolves are the product of a master truly understanding his canvas. The course could not seem more naturally, or artfully, placed in its surroundings. No mountain course along the I-15 quite blends in its surroundings so serenely and pleasurably as Pauma Valley. You are truly at one with your golf environment in the most undisturbed way possible.

The back nine, in particular, starting with the uphill par-4 10th, gives you two courses to enjoy – the one looking forward and the one behind. A 360-view of the course is required to truly appreciate all its nuances and aesthetic touches.

If you’re prone to golf tunnel vision, do yourself a favor and pace yourself here – perhaps walk? – so you’re fully aware of the complete golf experience available to you. The pet peeves of public play – pace, etiquette, etc. – couldn’t be more removed here.

Yet if you really want to be alone with you game, this is a great place to do it and why such pros as Phil Mickelson have found their golf solace here.

A telling detail of the design comes when asking someone about the signature, or their favorite, hole. My host was legitimately stumped, as am I after playing it twice now. I have favorite stretches, but to choose a single hole over another is too much hair-splitting. It’s simply that close amongst a number of worthy candidates.

Wherever you made your last birdie is a likely tie-breaker, and here’s hoping you get that chance soon.

For information about membership at Pauma Valley, or holding a private event, you can contact Scott Shinner at or 760.742.3721, ext. 111.


Video Post: Sushi Made By A Master At Pechanga

During at stay at Pechanga Casino in July, I had the pleasure of meeting Chef Kiyokuni Ikeda, the new head chef at Umi Sushi and Oyster bar.

He graciously agreed to let an amateur videographer study him at work while he made an umi roll, which consists of albacore, tempura shrimp, crab, jalapeno and spicy aioli. The results were, naturally, delicious.

The following videos allow you to study a master at is craft.

You can find all the menu offerings at Umi at

Maderas: Help Us Support Folds Of Honor – And Win


Maderas Golf Club’s drive to assist the military charity Folds of Honor will culminate on Sept. 7 with a raffle drawing for a Titleist golf bag and a foursome at Maderas.

You still have time to enter and can purchase raffle tickets in the Maderas pro shop. The tickets are $5 each or you can purchase five for $20. All proceeds go to assist Folds of Honor in its mission to help equip the children and spouses of those killed or disabled in service with the “means to achieve their academic goals.”

You can learn more at Questions about the raffle promotion or the cause can be directed to the Maderas pro shop at 858.451.8100.

Maderas Golf Club wishes you a safe and happy Labor Day weekend.



Chris Mayson on KUSI: Holes No. 1 and 3 At Maderas

You can score early at Maderas Golf Club and bank some strokes on the front nine that you’re likely to give back on the more difficult back nine.

In his latest video lessons, Chris Mayson shows you how to play holes No. 1 and No. 3, a pair of early birdie opportunities. Consider this your Maderas starter kit.