Moving east from the coastal regions of Grey Goatee Nation we eventually encounter Spokane, the capital of an empire, if not a state. We’ve learned a few things about Spokane as the Roadies prep for a trip there and points east.
- Spokane does not rhyme with “cocaine”;
- It’s not Seattle, and is really quite okay with it;
- It’s not even Tacoma, and knows enough to know that’s a good thing.
Spokane is the center of a region of the Nation known, with typical local grandiosity, as the Inland Empire. What Spokane can rightfully take pride in is the improbable quality and breadth of affordable municipal golf courses in the city and county. There are too many to play in one road trip, so we’re happy to play a couple city courses, The Creek at Qualchan and Esmeralda.
Slipping over the border bisecting the Empire, we find Idaho, a state of rare and diverse natural beauty, and what do we really know about it? Potatoes.
By god they’re proud of their potatoes, which you can tell by the nicknames of the sports teams for the major universities in the state. For example, the U. of Idaho Potatoes, the Idaho State Potatoes, the Boise State Potatoes … it’s hell on headline writers.
We’re heading for Lake Coeur d’Alene, a huge and ridiculously gorgeous body of water and tourism, near which lie two golf courses, only one of which will be carved up by the likes of us. On Monday, we’ll be playing Circling Raven, which notwithstanding the lack of any potato references in its name has earned a lot of noise as one of the best courses in the Northwest.
It’s a road trip on the way to good golf, right smack in the heart of the Inland Nation.
Day One: Aug. 5, The Creek at Qualchan, Spokane, Wash.
Day Two: Aug. 6, Esmeralda Golf Course, Spokane, Wash.
Day Three: Aug. 7, Circling Raven Golf Course, Worley, Idaho