We went down to for a round of golf. Except for the , Shoreline is our closest and prettiest local golf course. It’s 20 minutes from Los Altos Hills, in Mountain View, by the bay.
Shoreline is a bird-lover’s paradise, and a bird-hater’s hell. The course is constantly covered with geese. I think they have given up migrating and just live at Shoreline all year round. The golf course, part of Mountain View’s Shoreline Park, is adjacent to beautifully restored bayside wetlands.
The geese go “Grawk.” Sometimes they fly so close overhead you can hear their wings flapping.
On the third fairway, by the pond, I counted 74 geese. Give or take a goose.
During one round of golf I saw eight egrets, several swallows, a few blackbirds, hundreds of LBJs (little brown jobs), six ducks, 13 coots, three sandpipers, one great blue heron, and the geese.
Shoreline is “links” type course—near a big body of water (San Francisco Bay), undulating but not too steep up and down, open to the sky with trees not too tall to block your sense of open space.
It’s a good course for walking, although I doubt many people have ever golfed there without getting goose poo on their shoes. The wetlands are laced with pathways you can walk if you would rather not golf. I guess the pathways would not be exempt from goose poo.
From the golf course, you see bay on one side and mountains on the other. The trees are just tall enough to block the sight of most buildings.
You hear mostly bird sounds, with a subtle background of aircraft noise from nearby NASA-Moffett Field. When you get on the back-back (holes 13 through16) you can hear Highway 101, and see the brick buildings where Adobe used to be before they moved to San Jose.
The air on the course is fresh off the bay, which is a good thing except at low tide when the bay smells like a bay at low tide. You always can count on a breeze.
When I finish a round of golf at Shoreline, I am moaning with exhaustion, from all those strokes I took, and grinning deeply from being in that wide-open refreshing place.
The geese go “Grawk.”