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Some of the best and brightest in golf course architecture were here, plans in hands. Almost all looked south, rolling Palouse hills in view and a championship golf course in mind.

Gene Bates looked east, at vast wetlands divided by a Union Pacific rail line. Where others saw no possibility of negotiating both the tracks, the wetlands, woodlands and natural grasses, Bates saw Circling Raven, a true championship golf course on a magnificent expanse of ground. Rather than battle with Mother Nature, Bates embraced her.

That vision impressed. Coeur d’Alene tribal leadership didn’t hesitate in choosing Bates over the rest, particularly so with his commitment to a golf experience framed in North Idaho beauty, mountains in view and wildlife at hand.

Some dirt was moved, to be sure, but it doesn’t show. The tracks were tunneled in one place, bridged in another. A third crossing comes with a bridge under a trestle. Bates created a golf course spanning 620 acres, including 400 acres of wetlands that come into play on 15 holes. The rest is woodlands or native grasses, and the solitude of a back nine where the only hole you see is the one you’re playing.

Coeur d’Alene tribal members will tell you they are here because this is where the Creator put them, that they’ve always been here, and they will always be here. 

Gene Bates built Circling Raven, it seems, as if he’d always been here. With Circling Raven, it seems he will also…always be here.

Wetlands, woodlands and wide open space. Unforgettable.

From the first smile, the first offering of traditional tribal hospitality, you know you’ve found something special. Circling Raven lies beyond, inviting to golfers of all skills, although not so hospitable in its own nature.

Acclaimed from its beginning among the nation’s 10 “Best New Courses You Can Play,” Circling Raven Golf Club in North Idaho has rung up accolades every year since, consistently among every major publication’s Top 100 public courses in America. It’s been No. 1 (depending on the year) in Idaho, and also among the nation’s top tribal golf courses, resort courses and casino courses.

At 7,189 yards, par 72, a course rating of 75 and a 140 slope, she’s no pushover. Players fall in love with her regardless—for the challenge, for the five sets of tees and for the space. Oh, the space.

“The experience here is unique, there’s no other way to express it,” said Director of Golf Tom Davidson, himself a PGA National Merchandiser of the Year. “We strive for the warm welcome and providing a ‘welcome home’ feeling, but it’s the golf course that impresses most, and some say for a lifetime.”

At Circling Raven, you’ll see no houses along fairways, no condos. You’ll not even see a fountain. You are quite likely to see moose, elk and deer. You’re almost sure to see George and Gracie, our nesting Bald Eagles along the right side of #17.

You can play here, breathe clean air and go. Your heart, however, stays with Circling Raven.



Plan an unforgettable trip to the Coeur d’Alene Casino Resort Hotel and Circling Raven Golf Club. To help plan your stay, call 1-800-523-2464 or check availability online or book your tee time directly.

Circling Raven Golf Club and Coeur d’Alene Casino Resort Hotel
37914 South Nukwalqw (25 miles south of Coeur d’Alene)
Worley, Idaho 83876

Director of Golf, Tom Davidson

  • Top 10 Best New Upscale Courses Golf Digest, 2004
  • America's 100 Greatest Golf Courses Golf Digest, since 2006
  • No. 1 Tribal Course in U.S., Native American Casino Magazine
  • Certificate of Excellence for Exceptional Hospitality, TripAdvisor