Designed by Tom Doak and set higher into the rocky hills than most of the courses in the region, which tend to reside down within the flatter Palm Springs valley basin, Stone Eagle is a fun layout that features more dramatic elevation variations that most of its neighbors and competitors. Some of the slopes here actually get a little steep, but mostly the terrain is well used with Doak able to shape a dramatic landscape into a series of exciting holes with plenty of magical downhill vistas. The elevated rocky region is full of natural undulation, which it seems the design team simply covered, grassed and incorporated into the design. The bunker shapes are also classically shaped and often merge into waste areas to feel part of the landscape. On the front nine an uphill short par four along a hill and with a trap cut into the slope is particularly notable for its bunkering. The next hole is a drop-shot par three that is less effective.
At times it can be a little difficult to decipher precisely where the golf course heads next, but this is a track full of intelligent holes, sound strategic design and plenty of fun and drama. The vast shared grassed areas and natural pitch and fall of the land give it a somewhat links of the desert type appearance, the greens are similarly interesting though often so boldly shaped they teeter on the brink of being overdone. The opening green is perhaps the most extreme, the series of humps through the long back-to-front putting surface reminiscent of the 10th green at Barnbougle Dunes.
Stone Eagle is a really interesting golf course that is clearly more impressive when compared to the desert layouts in its general vicinity rather than the other great American courses by this acclaimed architect.